CC Capsule: Plus-Sized Hips On A Suburban

I’ve recently been on a business trip to Las Vegas, which of course gives me a chance to see some vehicles outside the usual circle of my small city. Most people go to Vegas to gamble, get drunk and perhaps see the shows. I didn’t manage to do any other those things but did get to make a few curbside spots. One even had some nice, wide hips …

There are, of course, lots of exotic cars like this wild green Lamborghini. More limousines than you could shake a stick at, what seemed like the bulk of Cadillac Escalade production. Exotics aren’t really my thing, but I did come across a few vehicles and even some parked in my hotel parking lot that might just interest our crowd.

Perhaps the most unique one was this dually Suburban. General Motors, of course, didn’t make these straight from the factory, but conversions were available, with a number sold new as a dealer conversion.

There are two ways to go about getting yourself a dually Suburban. One is to get some fender flares, wheels and a set of wheel adapters. You can then bolt up the dual rims to your stock axle. This can be done on the lighter 1500 model but the results are likely for looks only. I’d imagine it causes some extra stress on the wheel bearing as well.

This example has taken the other path and started with the heavier duty 2500 and swapped in the proper pickup truck dually axle. The front wheels have been swapped for heavier duty ones as well.

The fenders are fiberglass but oddly not the same as the dually pickup. As you can see the fuel door of the Suburban requires some consideration. Surprisingly there are still companies offering conversion parts just in case you have a hankering to reproduce this one.

This one makes a bid for being the ultimate Suburban with the powerful (in torque at least) 6.2L diesel engine but falls a bit short being two wheel drive instead of four.

So why the heck would anyone want a dually Suburban? Well it is likely the ultimate nine passenger towing machine with the dual rear wheels providing extra load capacity and stability. People often forget back in the early 80s the number of crew cab pickups around was quite small compared to today and most of them were owned by a construction or oil company. So if you wanted to tow something big and bring the family the dually Suburban was the answer.

If you do a search for dually Suburban there is a surprising number of conversions out there. If you can cast your minds back a few years the bad guys in the movie Twister used a fantastically sinister looking dually Suburban.