What is It?
Four-door, five-passenger midsize SUV. Notable features on test vehicle: dual-zone climate control, multiselectable four-wheel drive with low range, seat heaters, rear climate controls, HomeLink, multifunction steering wheel, OnStar, cargo-area air compressor, headlamp washer, XM Satellite Radio, and rear DVD-entertainment system.
What We Like
Adding a touch of luxury, the eight-way driver and passenger seats make it relatively easy to find a comfortable position, and the adjustable lumbar support is a spine coddler. There's plenty of headroom for the entire group, and all of our editors appreciated the XM Satellite Radio. GMC also has done an admirable job at keeping the cabin quiet, even over rough terrain.
What We Don't Like
Welcome to the rolling migraine: There are myriad surface textures that are supposed to match but don't and are all vying for attention. The dashboard air vents appear as afterthoughts, and the fake wood trim looks as though it was ripped from a Ranger bass boat. The front seats are fairly flat and are in need of additional side bolstering. The front-passenger seat's a tough pill to swallow if you're tall, as the bottom portion of the hard plastic center stack flares into the leg well (right where your knee would normally rest), necessitating the passenger to either endure a sore left knee or twist his torso toward the door. Other objections: when the front cupholder's in use, it blocks access to the 4WD switch; and the rear bench seat is as flat as a park bench and offers minimal thigh and lateral support. Want a rear armrest? Bring a pillow from home.
How it Works
When the Envoy was introduced a few years ago, its interior design was edgy and a good twist in its day. Now, however, the design is already beginning to look dated, and the combination of hard- and soft-touch materials doesn't mix well--especially the air-vent pods that look like blatant afterthoughts. True, it won the Golden Calipers, and it was the best of the best when it made its debut, but it's in dire need of freshening.