The community thinks...
Flat nose rear drive throwback by Musician Hauler on 07/05/2011. Trim: 1997 GMC Safari SLX, Owned 8 years.
Pros: Durable, affordable,& reliable transportation for lots of stuff and or people. Inexpensive parts. Easy to work on for Do-it-yourselfers. You won't hurt it going over curbs or on dirt/gravel/rough roads. Cheap to insure and license too.
Cons: Uh, not many for me. It's a bit sluggish with the AC on. CD player would be nice.
Overall review: Find a newer one with a tow package and a CD player. Avoid AWD, insurance is higher as is maintainence.I have had no trouble with mine. Bought it used w/ 59k miles in 2003 from a GM dealer. It's the 2wd version with a tow package(extra oil cooler and trans cooler). I immediately had the transmission fluid, the anti-freeze and had the differential lube changed. I would put this van up against any other. You can load it down with people and stuff and it actually handles better because of the truck frame and suspension. The dealer put brakes on it before I got it, and I just did put new ones on the front in 2010. If you drive it easy, tires & brakes will last just fine. 4.3 liter V-6 is one of GM's best motors, it's not fast but is very sturdy and has good torque and cruising power. 75 mph all day long with a full load. Fuel economy? I get 19 most of the time and as much as 23mpg on the highway.
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