On-Road Dynamics
GMC Envoy

What is It?
Double A-arm independent front suspension with struts and anti-roll bar/ five-link solid-axle rear with shocks, anti-roll bar and electronically controlled air suspension. Hydraulically assisted rack-and-pinion steering. Four-wheel disc brakes with ABS.

What We Like
Long highway jaunts in the GMC are a dream. A consummate pillow barge, nary a large road irregularity is transmitted to the cabin, and the optional rear air suspension keeps everything on an even keel, even with a loaded cargo area.

What We Don't Like
Soft. Floaty. Elastic. All are appropriate adjectives to describe the Envoy's Novocaine-like suspension. At the track, senior road-test guru Chris Walton drove the Envoy through the slalom like a 14-foot Bayliner caught in a turbulent sea--crashing down on its suspension at every gate, tail wagging in search of traction. Similarly, the steering also felt as though it had recently seen the dentist. Road feel is minimal at best, accompanied by more slop than there should be. Emergency braking allowed a clunky ABS to rear its head, as the Envoy darted left and right with the system's pulses. The Michelin Cross Terrain tires may have been whisper quiet on the pavement, but presented marginal grip in the twisties and sub-standard off-road performance.

How It Works
For the masses that'll use the Envoy as a daily kid hauler and weekend lugger, GMC's midsize SUV will fill the bill. On the other hand, if you're used to a vehicle providing a sense of road feel and steering feedback, the Envoy will lull you to sleep.