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GMC Savana

Overview
Review
OVERVIEW

2015 GMC Savana – 2500 RWD 4-Dr Cargo V8 Auto Trans (Base Trim)

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RATINGS

Editors Overall Rating

What is this?
This rating is provided by our team of editors based on their extensive professional expertise on Trucks, SUVs, Vans, and Wagons.
We liked
  • Classic, American Styling
  • Cutaway, Passenger, and Cargo Models
  • Available Diesel V-8
We disliked
  • Poor Interior Materials
  • Cargo Space Limited By High Floor
  • Efficiency (Or Lack Thereof)
PRICING Fair Market Pricing
What is this?
Fair Market Price is an estimate of a “fair” price that any given new vehicle can be purchased for. This national estimate, updated monthly, reflects recent market conditions (supply and demand) plus a reasonable dealer markup.
$27,701
Finance
Estimated monthly
payment:
Lease
Estimated monthly
payment:
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MSRP
$29,555
MPG
10 / 15
City/Hwy
ENGINE
4.8L V8
HORSE POWER
285 hp
@ 5,400 rpm
TORQUE
295 ft lb
of torque @ 4,600 rpm
See all Photos, Ratings, Pricing and Specifications
If you insist on a diesel V-8–powered van, your options are down to two: the GMC Savana and its Chevrolet Express mechanical twin.
Many of the benefits of the Savana lie with truck body builders who use machinery that’s accustomed to body-on-frame designs, and many of the Ford E-Series’ former customers are switching to General Motors to avoid paying for new tools to build the unit-body Transit van. Additionally, the Savana is available with the aforementioned Duramax V-8, as well as a series of reasonably powerful gasoline V-8s.
However, the heavy, old-school Savana is very inefficient. Although the EPA doesn’t rate the fuel economy of ¾- or 1-ton trucks, the old Savana ½-ton posted numbers far worse than its newer competition from Ford, Ram, and Mercedes-Benz. Its body-on-frame design and relatively low roof make for a smaller cargo opening and load area than its competitors.
However, for those who need a body-on-frame design or a big, torquey diesel engine, there’s something to be said for the distinctive, but dated Savana.

REVIEW

First Test: 2011 GMC Savana 3500 Cargo Van

General Motors' Old-School Work Van

Allyson Harwood
Apr 20, 2012
Photographers: Nick Bailey
The Savana and Express twins haven't changed much in the last few years, and there are no changes for the 2012 model year. But it had been a while since we last tested a Savana, so we were happy to get behind the wheel of this 3500 cargo van. The 3500 package offers a lot of utility for buyers. Its Gross Vehicle Weight Rating is an impressive 9600 pounds; it can tow 10,000 pounds; and on the 135-inch wheelbase like our tester's, it has a payload capacity of 4187 pounds. With the 3500, a Duramax turbodiesel is an available option, and that's the engine we tried out.
Photo 2/19   |   2011 GMC Savana Front Three Quarters
The Duramax is an excellent engine, getting the van up to 60 mph from a stop in 8.6 seconds. Response is quick, and keeping the Savana at freeway speeds is easy. While it's a shame that this Duramax is a detuned version of the one in the Silverado HD (the van loses 137 hp and 240 lb-ft of torque compared with the Silverado HD), having the more powerful engine isn't necessary -- but it would be fun. The transmission works well with the turbodiesel, but the van's steering is imprecise. The Savana came to a complete stop from 60 mph in 140 feet.
Photo 3/19   |   2011 GMC Savana Doors Opened
"BARE BONES -- Being that it's a working van, the interior is practicaly devoid of amenities. More room for cargo."
The interior is pretty sparse, as you would expect in a cargo van, but considering its $44,620 as-tested price tag, we would've expected more equipment for the money. It did come with power locks (but there was no key fob control of them) and windows, tilt wheel and cruise control, glass on the passenger side and on the rear cargo doors, disc brakes, heavy-duty tow option, and a locking rear diff. However, there are no tie-down hooks on the cargo floor -- the van has a spacious 284.4-cubic-foot cargo volume, but no way to secure goods to the floor. There aren't power mirrors or a glove box, and that price doesn't include fancy leather seats.
The Express and Savana are some of the top-selling cargo vans out there, with about 39 percent of the segment, but things are changing quickly, with the Ford Transit coming soon and the Ram version of the Ducato on the horizon. In addition, the much more refined NV and Sprinter have already raised the bar for full-size vans. With all the activity, GM risks being the only one that hasn't made any big improvements, and it's going to get tougher to stay competitive.
Photo 7/19   |   2011 GMC Savana Rear Cargo View
If GM wants to battle in the rapidly changing van market, one of the things it can do is offer value. While a key aspect of that is to keep the purchase price low (the 1500 vans start at just over $25,000), it's also important to keep option prices reasonable as well. A 3500-series van's price starts at about $32,000. In the case of this van, by the time it was equipped with a diesel and a few convenience packages, that went up to nearly $45,000. What GM has on its side is that its cost of ownership may prove to be lower than that of the newcomers to the van party, and that may be enough to overcome the relatively high price of admission and the onslaught coming from all directions.
Photo 8/19   |   2011 GMC Savana Front Seats

2011 GMC Savana 3500 Cargo Van
Base price $42,275
Price as tested $44,620
Layout Front engine, RWD, 2-pass, 3-door van
Engine 6.6L/260-hp/525-lb-ftV-8 turbodiesel, OHV, 4 valves/cyl
Transmission 6-speed automatic
Wheelbase 135.0 in
Length w width x height 224.0 x 79.2 x 81.5 in
Curb weight 6240 lb
GVWR 9600 lb
Payload Capacity 4187 lb
Towing Capacity 10,000 lb
0-60 mph 8.6 sec
Quarter mile 16.6 sec @ 81.9 mph
Braking, 60-0 140 ft
EPA city/hwy fuel econ Not rated
On sale in U.S. Currently
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2015 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$29,555
10 / 15
4.8L V8
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2014 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$27,710
15 / 20
4.3L V6
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2013 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$25,750
15 / 20
4.3L V6
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2012 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$25,090
15 / 20
4.3L V6
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Truckin news
Factory Fresh - 2012 GMC Savana Cargo Van
The Perfect Work or Project Van
Maxwell MatthewsonSep 1, 2012

2011 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$24,985
15 / 20
4.3L V6
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Motor Trend Motor Trend
2011 GMC Savana 3500 Cargo Van First Test
Staying the Course
Allyson HarwoodApr 27, 2012
Truck Trend
Truck Trend Magazine
truck reviews
First Test: 2011 GMC Savana 3500 Cargo Van
The Savana and Express twins haven't changed much in the last few years, and there are no changes for the 2012 model year. But it had been a while since we last tested a Savana, so we were happy to get behind the wheel of this 3500 cargo van.
Allyson HarwoodApr 20, 2012
Truck Trend
Truck Trend Magazine
news
GMC Savana Sales up 54%, Due in Part to the Home Improvement Industry
GMC has announced that sales of its full-size workhorse Savana van are up 89 percent in May and up 54% this year to date.
Christian SeabaughJun 13, 2011
Truck Trend
Truck Trend Magazine
news
Chevy and GMC Now Offering LPG-Powered Cutaway Vans From the Factory
General Motors has announced today that it is partnering with Knapheide Manufacturing to offer Liquefied Petroleum Gas-powered Chevrolet and GMC cutaway vans direct from the factory
Scott EvansFeb 15, 2011

2010 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$24,655
15 / 20
4.3L V6
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Truck Trend news
GM's CNG Option for Chevrolet Express, GMC Savana Priced at $15,910
CNG Chevrolet Express and CNG GMC Savana factory option has been priced and it starts with an MSRP of $15,910.
Benson KongSep 2, 2010
Truck Trend
Truck Trend Magazine
news
GM to Add CNG and LPG Compatibility for 2011 Chevrolet Express, GMC Savana Full-Size Vans
General Motors has listened. The Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana full-size vans will be compatible with CNG and LPG straight off the assembly line for the 2011 model year.
Rory JurneckaMay 19, 2010
Truck Trend
Truck Trend Magazine
news
Recall Roundup: Nissan Recalls Frontier, Pathfinder, and Xterra Again, GM to Fix Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana Vans
After recalling nearly its entire truck and SUV lineup earlier this month, Nissan has a fresh notice for the 2010 model year Frontier, Pathfinder, and Xterra. Also, GM will be alerting Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana customers of a potential engine fire issue.
Benson KongMar 29, 2010
Truck Trend
Truck Trend Magazine
truck reviews
Truck Trend's Best In Class 2010: Passenger Van
This year, we've added full-size vans here. Minivans are functional, but there are plenty of Truck Trend readers who are much more interested in big vans.
The Editors of Truck TrendMar 12, 2010
Truck Trend
Truck Trend Magazine
news
New 6.6-liter Duramax Diesel for Chevy Express/GMC Savana Vans
GM recently allowed brief drives in the next-gen meaner, cleaner Duramax diesel engine, albeit in the lighter-duty G-van (Chevy Express/GMC Savana) application.
Frank MarkusAug 12, 2009

2009 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$24,365
15 / 20
4.3L V6
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2008 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$23,070
15 / 20
4.3L V6
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2007 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$22,255
14 / 18
4.3L V6
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2006 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$21,645
14 / 18
4.3L V6
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2005 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$22,860
15 / 20
4.3L V6
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2004 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$22,800
15 / 20
4.3L V6
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2003 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$23,105
15 / 20
4.3L V6
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Truck Trend truck reviews
2003 Chevrolet Express/GMC Savana Van
With so much riding on truck sales these days, it appears General Motors has decided to up the an...
John M. ClorNov 19, 2002
Motor Trend
Motor Trend Magazine
Motor Trend
2003 Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana
In its quest for truck sales dominance, General Motors has been refreshingly aggressive in bolstering its pickup and SUV lineup over the past few years. But the General also knows the key to sustaining an increase in market share is rooted in incremental sales across the entire product spectrum. And
John M. ClorNov 8, 2002

2002 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$22,570
14 / 18
4.3L V6
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2001 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$21,144
14 / 18
4.3L V6
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Truck Trend truck reviews
Full-Size Van Showdown: 2001 GMC Savana SLT vs. 2001 Ford E-150 Traveler
Enter the '01 GMC Savana SLT (as well as its sister van, the Chevy Express LT) and the Ford E-150 Wagon equipped with the Traveler Package.
John M. ClorFeb 19, 2010

2000 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$20,724
15 / 18
4.3L V6
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1999 GMC Savana

SPECIFICATIONS
$20,059
15 / 19
4.3L V6
VIEW ALL SPECIFICATIONS
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