Chevrolet Lumina APV

Chevrolet Lumina APV (1990-1994)

Chevrolet Lumina APV (1994-1996)

The Chevrolet Lumina APV was a van that was manufactured by Chevrolet, a GM division in the model years 1990 to 1996. The sister models of the Lumina APV were the Pontiac Trans Sport and Oldsmobile Silhouette.


The first attempt by General Motors to build a van to compete with the Dodge Caravan and Plymouth Voyager, the Chevrolet Astro and GMC Safari his twin, did not manage to Chrysler's almost complete dominance of the van market in the late 1980s essential to change, we launched a second attempt. The Lumina APV was released as part of a planned complete Lumina series, which then but actually consisted of a sedan and this same van. APV stands for " All Purpose Vehicle" (all-purpose vehicle). The car itself was very transformable and featured many technical innovations, but the unfamiliar " spacey " exterior could not convince the van customers. The car had a monocoque frame and has shared components with the GM A platform.

Technology and innovations

The cars were in the now-defunct GM plant in Tarrytown (New York) assembled and based on the GM U platform, which consisted of a galvanized truss frame made ​​of steel ( " Space Frame "), which was combined with fiberglass body parts that are resistant were against rust and minor damage. This manufacturing technique was developed for the Pontiac Fiero and was used by GM largely for the products of its Saturn division.

The Lumina APV was available as a seven-seater, with the rear seats five very light ( 15.4 kg ) were and can be combined in the hold. As of 1994, there were desired fixed built-in child seats, which opened the possibility to make two of the rear seats with a train on an attached lever from adult to child safety seats.

The Lumina APV was available only one of the three sister models as vans. He had rubber mats instead of carpets, no rear seats and painted plastic inserts in place of the rear side windows.

The cars were equipped with optional self-leveling, which was behind a small compressor from inflatable shock absorbers. The cars could be regulated regardless of the load to the correct level. In addition to a supplied hose, tires or sports and play equipment made ​​it possible to inflate.

As of 1994, there were remote controlled power sliding doors, a GM innovation that can be found today in almost all vans.

In the model years 1994 and 1995, a traction control was available with the 3.8 -liter V6 engine.

Moderate Sales Success

The design of these vans was very controversial. When the Chevrolet Lumina APV and its sister models were designed, no one had the marketing of sporting Vans tested, but at GM, it was thought that this could be a large market segment. The vans were constructed so that they were lower and sleeker than any comparable cars from other brands in this market. The extremely long and flat sloping windshield and the resulting large distance from the lower edge caused an unusual ride until the driver had gotten used to the changed dimensions. Car Magazine named the new Vans because of their typical side view " Dustbusters " (vacuum cleaner ).

First, a thin 3.1 -liter V6 engine was used, which gave only an output of 120 hp ( 88 kW) and is not easily did with the heavy car.

1992 Lumina APV and got the its sister models in addition to desire a 3.8 -liter V6 from Buick with 170 hp (125 kW). This engine developed significantly more torque and accelerated the car better at what they did to the bestmotorisierten vans of their time to the Ford Windstar, with its 200 hp (147 kW) 3.8 L V6 came out strong in the model year 1996.

In response to the criticism by the buyer to the avant-garde styling of the vehicles (and very modest sales figures), the evaluations of potential buyers, publications in motor magazines and even malice in the commercials from Chrysler, it was decided in 1994, the Lumina APV and the Trans Sport a facelift bestowed allow. The nose was shortened by 3 " (75 mm) and the A-pillars were no longer painted black to give the car a more conventional appearance. Additionally, there was an edge in the interior instrument panel, in order to reduce the apparent distance to the lower edge of the windscreen.

The production of these vans was discontinued in 1996 and the plant in Tarrytown, which existed since 1900, closed and demolished.

The Lumina APV was replaced by the venture, a brand new vehicle with a conventional steel monocoque frame and ordinary styling that deliberately copied the look of the class leader Dodge Caravan / Plymouth Voyager.

Year by year


  • Customer complaints about the enormous dashboard reflections in the windscreen include the installation of a black carpet on the dashboard instead of the previous plastic surface.


  • This year, the 3.8 -liter V6 engine with 125 kW of Buick was new to offer in conjunction with an electronically controlled four -speed automatic transmission 4T60 -E.
  • The mounted in the bulkhead radio antenna mast disappeared and was replaced by a roof antenna between tin roof and headliner.
  • The fixed rear view mirrors have been replaced with movable, which also turned out even larger.
  • The brakes were enlarged and fitted as standard with ABS.


  • A remotely operated, electric sliding door has been announced but not produced until the following year.
  • A revised center console with larger switches for the air conditioning and large shelves has been added.


  • The styling of the car was revised and shortened the nose by 75 mm, used the headlights of the Pontiac Bonneville and the A-pillars are no longer black, but painted in body color, so that the car can see the competitors products of similar.
  • To allow the distance between the instrument panel and the lower edges of the windshield to appear smaller, the instrument panel is provided with an additional edge.
  • The electric sliding door (see 1993) was introduced as an extra in the production.
  • Built-in child seats in the second row of seats were available on request.
  • Also on request, there was a traction control.
  • The darkened rear windows were even more strongly colored.
  • An airbag on the driver's side was standard.


  • Electric door locks that unlock with the parking function of the automatic transmission and automatically lock at any other position of the selector lever, were introduced as a standard feature on the optionally available door lock package.


  • Last year of production. The APV was replaced by the venture.
  • The 3.1 -liter V6 and the 3.8 liter V6 fell from the manufacture and the 3.4 -liter V6 with 180 hp (132 kW) and a torque of 277 Nm became the only available engine.
  • The traction control was no longer available.