The Tahoe's highlights are its responsive powertrain, quiet cabin, and good low-speed ride. But fit and finish are unimpressive, the third-row seat is very tight and handling is cumbersome.
Alerts
There are 6 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Road Test Results

Performance
Acceleration Acceleration Acceleration tests are conducted on a smooth, flat pavement straightaway at the track. Time, speed, and distance measurements are taken with a precise GPS-based device that’s hooked to a data-logging computer.
0 to 60 mph 0 to 60 mph (sec.) The time in seconds that a vehicle takes to reach 60 mph from a standstill with the engine idling.
Transmission Transmission Transmission performance is determined by shifting smoothness, response, shifter action, and clutch actuation for manual transmissions.
Fuel Economy Fuel Economy We perform our own fuel-economy tests, independent of the government's often-quoted EPA figures and the manufacturers' claims. Using a precise fuel-flow measuring device spliced into the fuel line, we run two separate circuits to represent city and highway consumption.
CR's Overall Mileage CR's Overall Mileage CR's overall mileage is a composite of measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course and highway cruising; and CR's 150-mile test trip of mixed driving, if tested. In recent road tests, we've discontinued the 150-mile trip test.
CR's City Mileage CR's City Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course.
CR's Highway Mileage CR's Highway Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed highway cruising.
Annual Fuel Cost Annual Fuel Cost The cost and amount of fuel used in 12,000 miles and is calculated from CR's overall mileage.
Braking Braking The braking rating is a composite of wet and dry stopping distances and pedal feel. Braking distance is from 60 mph, with no wheels locked.
Emergency Handling Emergency Handling Several factors go into the rating, including the avoidance maneuver speed and confidence, as well as how the vehicle behaves when pushed to its limit.
Comfort / Convenience
Ride Ride Our expert judgment of how well the suspension isolates and absorbs road imperfections and how steady it keeps the body on various road surfaces.
Noise Noise Our expert judgment of the vehicle's interior noise level in everyday driving.
Front Seat Comfort Front Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the front seat is for drivers of various heights.
Rear Seat Comfort Rear Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the rear seat is for two passengers to sit across.
Interior Fit and Finish Interior Fit and Finish An expert evaluation of the interior quality and craftsmanship.
Trunk/Cargo Area Trunk/Cargo Area Our rating is based on the amount of luggage or cargo space that a vehicle has in the trunk or cargo area.

Owner Reports

Worse Better
Reliability History Reliability History The reliability charts are based on responses on hundreds of thousands of vehicles from our latest Annual Auto Survey. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below. The results are presented relative to the average model that year. Extra weight is given to the more serious areas such as major engine or transmission problems. Based on this data and further analysis, we predict reliability for the latest year. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
NA
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
NA
2007
2008
2009
2010
NA
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
Reliability Trouble Spots
Engine Major Engine Major Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.
NA
Engine Minor Engine Minor Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.
NA
Engine Cooling Engine Cooling Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.
NA
Transmission Major Transmission Major Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.
NA
Owner Satisfaction Owner Satisfaction To learn about satisfaction, CR has collected survey data from our annual survey on more than half a million vehicles. Our subscribers provide great insights into their satisfaction by answering one simple question: If they had it to do all over again, would they definitely buy or lease the same model? In addition, respondents also rate their cars in six categories: driving experience, comfort, value, styling, audio, and climate systems. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
Driving Experience Driving Experience Includes acceleration and handling
Comfort Comfort Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride
Value Value Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?
Styling Styling How it looks inside and out
Safety Equipment
ABS standard. Side air bags standard from 2000-2002, available until 2006, standard from 2010. ESC available from 2003, standard from 2005. Head protection air bags available in 2007, standard from 2008.
Road Test

The Tahoe's highlights are its responsive powertrain, quiet cabin, and good low-speed ride. But fit and finish are unimpressive, the third-row seat is very tight and handling is cumbersome.

Seating
3 front, 3 rear, 3 third
Drive Wheels
4WD , Rear
Warranty

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
4-door SUV
Transmissions Available
  • 4-speed Automatic
Engines Available
  • 4.8-liter V8 (275 hp)
  • 5.3-liter V8 (285 hp)

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2002 Chevrolet Tahoe owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

Accessory belts or pulleys

"A/C tensioner broke and made noise. Known problem w/ these trucks."

C D., TN (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)
Oil leaks

"rear main seal was leaking and had it replaced when I had transmission replaced"

M Z., TX (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.2-L V8)

"Oil pan gasket was replaced"

Anonymous, OR (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

"Just some small oil leaks associated with age"

Anonymous, WA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

"Replaced oil pan gasket. Oil still leaking"

W F., NC (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

"Large enough oil leaks that I had to go into the shop two or three times to find and repair them. Total costs resulting in four to $500."

John P., MD (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 4.7-L V8)

"Rear main seal replacement was necessary"

Anonymous, OR (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

"Had to replace leaking rear main seal - $1200!"

C D., TN (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Antilock system (ABS)

"ABS failed and we simply disconnected it"

Stewart W., WI (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 4.7-L V8)

"ABS control module failed. Had to remove and send off for repairs and then reinstall"

Anonymous, AK (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

"Check engine light indicated ABS braking system needed work. Held off on repair for about two years"

Anonymous, MD (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 4.7-L V8)

"There's a history with the ABS & emergency brake lights to come on."

Wesley F., FL (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

"This is KNOWN issue among dealers and the YouTube community with GM Trucks of this vintage. The ABS sensor is built into the hub, and over time it starts turning the ABS on when braking and this increases the stopping distance. This happens on dry roads and can be very unsettling. It nearly caused an accident and the stopping distance increases and if you don't plan for this you will rear end the car at the stop ahead. It's an expensive repair because you have to replace the entire wheel bearing assembly to eliminate the problem."

Bradley F., MN (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)
Normal routine brake wear

"rear brake line corroded and leaked. New rear calipers replaced due to rusty bleed screws"

Anonymous, IL (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)
Premature brake wear

"The rear brakes wear out in 20,000 miles consistently and have since the vehicle was new. I have tried all the recommended fixes with no results. I'm told consistently that it's a design flaw from GM. I simply have to replace the rear brake pads every 20,000??!!"

Mike B., CO (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.2-L V8)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

A/C compressor

"Compressor failed and replacement lasted 11 months"

Anonymous, MN (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

"Clutch rubber projections wore off"

S Z., NJ (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.2-L V8)

"A part went bad and had to be replaced in order to have cool a/c"

Anonymous, GA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)
Refrigerant leaks

"Weak cooling capacity, turned out to be caused by a leak in the rear A/C"

Anonymous, MI (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.2-L V8)

"Last summer my wife advised me that the air conditioning is not blowing as cold as it used to. We added Freon to it but still does not blow very cool when the truck is idling"

Anonymous, GA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

"ongoing issue - numerous refrigerant recharges over the years"

Anonymous, NY (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.2-L V8)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Fuel pump

"Was weak at 135000 miles and had to crank engine awhile before it would turn over"

M Z., TX (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.2-L V8)

"The fuel pump fails to hold it's prime. I found that if you turn the key off and on a few times it pumps fuel back to the engine and it will start and run. If it sits for more than ten min you lose fuel pressure and have to re-prime. I did this for two years and then installed an after market pump. (The check valve in the OEM pump must be defective if it wears out before the pump does. Even doing it myself the pump was over $300. This is a $1000 job in a pro shop."

Bradley F., MN (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

"Fuel pump failure"

Anonymous, CA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

"It would have been very expensive to repair in a shop as you have to drop the fuel tank. Husband & brother in law did the work."

Anonymous, (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

"This is the second time that the fuel pump failed since I owned the vehicle."

Fred K., CA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)
Sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor)

"Some sensors are so touchy that in order to pass a smog test the vehicle must be driven MANY miles at a consistent speed to reset them. If you have to slow for traffic you must start over. We had to drive about 40 miles very late at night to reset them. Waste of time & fuel! There should be a better way!"

Anonymous, (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

12V power plug

"It was part of the module related to the highlights, dimmer switch, turn signal addressed in question before. It is all related"

Anonymous, AL (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 4.7-L V8)
Body control module

"driver(left front) electric window motor module failed and had to be replaced"

John F., NY (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.2-L V8)
Exterior lights (other than headlights)

"multiple lights blowing out after multiple replacements. not a fuse issue. replaced multiple lights in their entirety and appears to be working fine again. approximately $600 to fix. note this includes headlights"

Anonymous, SC (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe 4.7-L V8)
Headlights

"The problem turned out to be the power plug located within the turn signal, headlight dimer switch module located on the steering wheel column"

Anonymous, AL (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 4.7-L V8)
Wiper motor or washer

"Reservoir leaked, front windshield pump failed"

David B., OH (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling)

"Paint is peeling in a few areas, mainly the tailgate/hatch back. I have never driven a car with paint peeling before. I know it is old, but rust is expected, not b\peeling paint"

Sue B., MI (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT)

"Clear coat peeling of & white spots on hood & Roof"

Anonymous, CA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

"The paint around the lock on the hatchback door peeled off and exposed white, my Tahoe is Royal blue so it shows badly"

Sue B., MI (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe)
Rust

"Rusting on rear bummer and panels below doors"

Stewart W., WI (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 4.7-L V8)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

Locks and latches

"Passenger side door would not unlock from the inside"

David B., OH (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)
Mirrors

"LF and RF mirrors both fogged over to the point I could not see out of them and needed to be replaced."

M Z., TX (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.2-L V8)
Sunroof

"The sunroof motor was repaired once, but is too costly to continue to do so p repeatedly. Living in Michigan it was not used that much that it should have died twice"

Sue B., MI (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT)

"Th sunroof malfunctioned soon after warranty and was too expensive to fix, so dealer unhooked the wiring so it would not accidentally get opened, because it would not close.;;"

Sue B., MI (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Alignment

"It was a routine alignment that needs to be done on all cars periodically"

John F., NY (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.2-L V8)
Power steering pumps and hoses

"Power steering pump went out. Was able to drive without power steering but it was very difficult and dangerous."

Ron B., CA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)
Wheel bearings

"4 wheel drive wheel bearings cannot lube. I also do not like the fact that the oil change shops say they lube the zerk fittings on the front end. they do not do it as they say they did. I have to get under the car myself to do it. I might as well get under it myself at 75 yrs to change oil!!!"

S Z., NJ (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.2-L V8)

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

What Owners Say

Alternator

"Alternator stopped charging. Needed to replace."

Anonymous, CA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)
Battery (not hybrid or electric)

"Replaced dead battery."

Anonymous, CA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

Transmission rebuild or replacement

"The transmission was slipping in first gear and also would not go into fourth gear."

Fred K., CA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

What Owners Say

Cylinder head

"A number of exhaust manifold bolts broke on both sides which required that the cylinder heads be replaced."

Fred K., CA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Exhaust leaks

"It developed a leak in the flange between the manifold and the exhaust pipe"

Anonymous, BC (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

Radio

"Radio volume goes completely off without reason. Instruments lights go completely dark when auto headlights come on"

W F., NC (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Differential

"Had major noise from differential requiring replacement of bearings, ring and pinion gears. $2400"

David V., UT (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Air or water leaks

"passenger side water leak from windshield rubber seal, loosened headliner under visor & bypassenger door"

Anonymous, CA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

What Owners Say

Water pump

"Water pump failed which meant it was leaking and needed to be replaced."

Fred K., CA (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.2-L V8)

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

What Owners Say

Coolers and lines

"Lower 1/2 of radiator was corroded and heater hose plastic connections all needed to be replaced due to overheating and leaking."

M Z., TX (2002 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.2-L V8)
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