2015 Chevrolet Tahoe Z71 edition introduced at Texas State Fair

Article by Andrew Christian, on September 25, 2014

At the Texas State Fair, GM introduced the 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban Z71 editions. Available on the 2015 Tahoe and Suburban LT models with 4WD, the Z71 adds a new front skid plate, 18-inch wheels wrapped in off-road tires, a new grille, fog lamps, front tow hooks, front parking assist, running boards as well as the ‘Z71’ badge inside and out.

The new editions will go on sale this fall and will also get the OnStar 4G LTE with built-in Wi-Fi hotspots, wireless phone charging capability and hands-free liftgate operation.

For those who don’t know, the hands-free liftgate and wireless phone charging are included in the Luxury Package offered on the LT models, while LTZ models get them as standard.

Besides the Z71 package, the 2015 Tahoe and Suburban models arrive with an updated coil-over-shock independent front suspension design, while the rear gets a five-link coil-spring suspension design.

The four-wheel-disc brake system features Duralife brake rotors as well as automatic locking rear differential that provides better traction and comfort.

Press Release

Chevrolet Introduces 2015 Tahoe and Suburban Z71

Chevrolet introduced Z71 editions of the 2015 Tahoe and Suburban today at the Texas State Fair. They go on sale this fall.

Synonymous with off-road performance, the Z71 package adds a front skid plate, off-road tires mounted on 18-inch wheels, a unique grille, running boards and "Z71" identification inside and out. Fog lamps, front tow hooks and front parking assist are also included.

The Z71 package is available on 2015 Tahoe and Suburban LT models with 4WD, with vehicles produced starting in October. Those vehicles also benefit from additional content added midway through the launch year, including OnStar 4G LTE with a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot, wireless phone charging capability and hands-free liftgate operation.

OnStar with 4G LTE with a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot is standard on LT and LTZ models. It provides a mobile hub for drivers and passengers to stay connected. The hotspot is on whenever the vehicle is on and comes with a three-month/three gigabyte data trial (whichever comes first), after which the customer can purchase additional data.

The hands-free liftgate and wireless phone charging are included with the available Luxury Package on LT models and they're standard on LTZ. The hands-free liftgate feature allows a customer with a keyless entry fob to open and close the liftgate by waving his or her foot under a sensor beneath the rear fascia.

With the wireless phone charging feature, a magnetic inductive charging system allows users to place their phone on a small mat in the vehicle, where it charges without the need to plug it in.

Designed for greater capability

The new Z71 package complements a chassis and suspension system engineered to deliver a quieter, more-controlled ride. It all starts on a stronger, fully boxed, perimeter frame, which supports payload and trailering capability that body-frame-integral crossovers and SUVs can't match.

All models – 2WD and 4WD – feature an updated coil-over-shock independent front suspension design. At the rear is a five-link coil-spring suspension design, which enables optimal ride and handling through more precise tuning. Additional chassis and suspension features include:

  • A wider rear track that contributes to a more planted stance
  • Shear-style body mounts, which reduce body shake and enhance the feeling of structural stiffness and improve damping performance when compared with previous compression mounts
  • Eighteen-inch standard wheels are a half-inch wider than previous models, reducing tire flex for improved cornering performance
  • New, electric variable-assist power steering system enhances fuel economy and tailors steering assist to vehicle speed
  • New four-wheel-disc brake system with Duralife™ brake rotors that offer up to double the service life
  • Available automatic locking rear differential that provides greater traction when needed and greater driving comfort when it's not.

Tahoe and Suburban LTZ models feature third-generation magnetic ride control – a real-time damping system that delivers more precise body motion control. It "reads" the road every millisecond and changes damping in just 10-15 milliseconds in shocks filled with a magneto-rheological fluid containing minute iron particles. Under the presence of magnetic charge, the iron particles align to provide damping resistance almost instantly.

Z71: A legacy of capability

Chevrolet has long used the Z71 designation as the order code for 4WD or off-road suspension packages on its full-size trucks and SUVs – much like Z28 originally denoted a specific suspension package on the Camaro.

In 1988, the first official special Z71 package appeared on Chevrolet's new-generation full-size pickup trucks, melding capability-enhancing components such as special shocks and chassis protection equipment with visual distinction, including the iconic Z71 rear fender decals.

As Chevrolet introduced new-generation full-size SUVs for 2000, a special Tahoe Z71 marked the end of production for the previous-generation models. Z71 packages were offered on Tahoe and Suburban in 2001 and have remained in production for most of the last 15 years. On some models, the package was available with 2WD suspensions as well.

In 2013, Z71-equipped models accounted for 10 percent of Tahoe and Suburban sales.

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