We test a lot of tuners. After a while, patterns emerge. It's simple: Too many aftermarket outfits don't take the time to test and develop their products, to ensure that they deliver an improvement.
Last year, we tested a Joe Gibbs Performance (JGP) Silverado, a truck that quantified its performance gains by beating up on the factory-engineered Chevrolet Silverado SS. This is rare and impressive, especially when you consider it cost less than the Silverado SS. When the Gibbs guys called again, we asked, "When and where?"
Even though Joe Gibbs has returned to the NFL as a coach this year, he hasn't given up his penchant for all things automotive; enter the Joe Gibbs Performance Tahoe. It comes with the standard Chevrolet 5.3-liter V-8 mated to an automatic transmission and is offered with an available ($5460) supercharger package that'll pump up the power by 100 horses (to 395). Just like its JGP-supercharged Silverado sibling, it'll outrun a Silverado SS in the quarter mile, generating a 14.65 at 91.56 pass. Those numbers are also good enough to outrun a 4.4-liter BMW X5 or a Porsche Cayenne S, European competitors that cost thousands more.
The JGP Tahoe is based on a stock Tahoe LS or LT in either 2WD or 4WD configuration. The first step is the JGP Package ($8800), which includes a Gibbs-designed front fascia w/foglamps, rockers and spats, D-pillar covers, and rear bumper cover, all finished in monotone (as is the front grille). The suspension consists of Gibbs-spec 20x8.5-inch Hyper Silver wheels with Goodyear Eagle LS P275/55R20 tires, and the suspension itself was lowered two inches. They combine for improved handling while maintaining ride civility and compliance. The package also includes a Gibbs-engineered stainless-steel cat-back exhaust with dual tips as well as trucker-belt-buckle-size die-cast door and tailgate badges. Inside, you'll find a Gibbs-designed and logoed instrument cluster, along with logo-embroidered floormats and a dash plaque noting the unit's limited-production status.