XL-7

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2008 Suzuki XL-7 Overview

Although it's not as big a player in the midsize SUV market as many of its more-popular competitors, the 2008 Suzuki XL-7's long-term transferable warranty and budget pricing appeal to families. The '08 XL-7 is Suzuki's largest crossover SUV, available in either front-wheel or on-demand all-wheel drive, with either two or three rows of seating. After a major overhaul last year, this year's version receives minor changes, most notably a less-expensive Base model and standard remote start (which also starts the climate control and heated seats), as well as a navigation system in the Limited and a standard sunroof in the Luxury trim.

Four trims are available for the 2008 Suzuki XL-7. The Base trim is nicely equipped with power features and a CD player, but comes only in two-row, five-passenger form and only in front-wheel drive. Mid-range Premium and Luxury trims add rear climate control, heated power seats, and leather upholstery, and are available with either two or three rows. The top-of-the-line Limited adds a navigation system, foglights, larger wheels, and a rear spoiler. It is only offered in the three-row, seven-passenger configuration. A new option this year for the Limited is a rearview camera. All trims earn five stars in crash tests and are outfitted with four-wheel ABS brakes, traction and stability control, rollover sensors, and dual front and side curtain airbags for each row. There is only one engine choice â?? a 3.6-liter, 252-hp V6 with variable valve timing. It's matched to a five-speed shiftable automatic transmission.

The XL-7's second row split-folds and tumbles 60/40, and in seven-passenger models the third row splits 50/50 and folds flat. With both rows down, the '08 XL-7 holds 95 cubic feet. The third row drastically cuts down on cargo space when up, from 49 cubic feet in the 5-passenger model to only 14 cubic feet. Another nice feature is a flat-folding front passenger seat, if you need to fit long objects. A roof rack is standard, and the midsize SUV is rated to tow 3,500 pounds. A decent price and a long list of convenience features makes the 2008 XL-7 attractive to families on a budget. Owners say the engine is powerful and smooth, though it can be noisy. No off-road capability, a cramped third row, and blind spots are downsides.

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XL-7

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