August 1, 2002
GM to offer Avalanche without body cladding
Detroit, Michigan – In the first quarter of 2003, General Motors will offer a version of its Avalanche four-door pickup truck without the extensive plastic body cladding on the side and rear of the vehicle.
The Avalanche without cladding will look more like a traditional pickup truck, but will offer the same unique folding panel and removeable rear window that allows the bed to be extended from 5’3″ to 8’1″, as well as the same equipment packages and options as the original versions. However, the Avalanche without cladding will be available with a new optional soft top for the cargo area.
The Avalanche North Face edition and three-quarter-ton versions of the Avalanche will not be offered without body cladding. Avalanches with body cladding will have darker cladding for the 2003 model year.
All 2003 Avalanche models will include new safety, comfort, convenience and performance improvements.
New creature comforts for the 2003 Avalanche include rear-seat entertainment systems with a DVD player and flip-down screen. A custom-designed Bose audio system is also available with a new, high-powered, six-channel amplifier and six speakers.
New optional brake and accelerator pedals can be adjusted rearward in unison by nearly three inches for better positioning and comfort, and they are available with a memory feature. An eight-button steering wheel control is available to personalize several functions (trip calculator, fuel data, etc.), and provides safe access to all entertainment systems. New power outside rear view mirrors fold against the vehicle for easier vehicle passage through narrow spaces; the power mirrors also tilt for easier curb viewing when parallel parking.
A new multi-zone manual-control heating, ventilation and air conditioning system (standard) allows the driver and front passenger to adjust the temperature to their own comfort. The battery-rundown protection now automatically turns off the headlamps and park lamps in addition to the interior lights after 10 minutes if left on inadvertently.
Improved performance for the 2003 Avalanche includes better brake performance, better “pedal feel” and quieter operation. Avalanche’s Autotrac 4WD system gets improved fuel economy when in 2WD, as well as improved “driver feel” during parking-lot and other low-speed maneuvers. A new electrical architecture enables the driver information centre to monitor and report as many as 34 vehicle system functions. New service indicators include “Ice Possible” and “Door Ajar.” The standard engine continues to be a powerful 5.3L V8 with 285 hp and 325 lb-ft of torque.
Safety enhancements for 2003 include a passenger-sensing system and dual-level air bags. The automatic passenger-sensing air-bag system automatically deactivates the passenger-side air bag under certain conditions to protect children. The dual-level air-bag system is a supplemental restraint system designed to detect vehicle deceleration and, based on the deceleration data, provide an appropriate amount of air-bag inflation. Dual-stage air bags are designed to help reduce the occurrence of inflation-induced injuries by deploying the air bag less forcefully in lower-speed crashes.
The 2003 Avalanche already complies with 2005 federal seat standards for child restraint anchorages. The LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) system for child seats is provided in the front-passenger side seat and second-row center and passenger side seats.
The 2003 Avalanche offers three new exterior colours: Charcoal Gray Metallic, Arrival Blue Metallic and Yellow (interim availability). The North Face Edition has a new medium gray interior.