1998 Chevrolet S10
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1998 Chevrolet S10 Review
A leader in compact pickups.
Reviewed by Automotive on
The 1998 Chevrolet S10 is a compact pickup manufactured by GM and sold under the Chevrolet marque. The Chevrolet S-Series lineup also features an SUV version, called the S10 Blazer, and an electric version, made available as a fleet vehicle. The 1998 Chevrolet S10 is part of the second generation of the S-Series lineup.
Engines: 4.3-liter V-6, 2.2-liter four-cylinder
Transmissions: four-speed automatic, five-speed manual
Models: Chevrolet S10, Chevrolet S10 LS, Chevrolet S10 ZR2
The sheet-metal material and the interior of the Chevrolet S10 were redesigned in the 1998 model year. Second-generation dual airbags made their debut this year in the S-10, with a reduced force of deployment.
In this model year, Chevrolet upgraded the base, four-cylinder engine with Vortec technology, and four-wheel disc brakes were installed in the four-wheel-drive versions of the S10 for better braking performance. Trucks with automatic transmission were outfitted with a smoother transfer case.
This year also marks some common changes across all models. These changes include new automatic headlight control, radios, and a standard theft-deterrent system.
The 1994 redesign of the S10 pickup was a response to the market demand for more compact and ""car-like"" trucks. Chevrolet generally does an impressive job following market trends, and was able to produce a small-scale version of the S10 without compromising its unique identity and appeal as a practical machine.
The S10’s exterior was redesigned this model year too, with a modified rear bumper and a new front-end. The new, thick, horizontal chrome bar and the thin, horizontally-stretched headlights below the hood help buyers identify the classic layout of Chevy trucks.
The ZR2 package will appeal to the senses and preferences of off-road enthusiasts. It gives the 1998 Chevrolet S10 a wider and taller stance, tougher suspension, aggressive tires, and special wheel flares.
The interior of the 1998 Chevrolet S10 has been revised, but the overall available space is still the same. Headroom up front is quite good, and the seats are supportive yet comfortable. The driver’s seat is a bit too low, and as a result, the steering wheel and cowl seem too high.
The rear bench of the 1998 Chevrolet S10 can theoretically fit three people, but for all practical purposes it allows just one. Even the rear jump seats of the extended cab models allow only one adult to sit comfortably, and only for short trips.
The dashboard looks cheap and uses brittle-looking plastic. The low-height windshield might appear to obstruct visibility, but it works surprisingly well thanks to the huge mirrors.
Performance & Handling
The 1998 Chevrolet S10 is available with a 2.2-liter, four-cylinder engine that can be combined with a five-speed manual or electronic four-speed automatic transmission. This engine delivers 120 horsepower (hp) and 140 lb-ft of torque.
The truck comes with an optional 4.3-liter, V-6 engine that delivers varying power outputs based on the arrangement: when combined with the two-wheel-drive (2WD) model, it delivers 170 hp. The four-wheel-drive (4WD) version comes with the standard engine, but the rated power output increases to 180 hp. With the ZR2 option, the engine can deliver up to 190 hp (4WD) or 180 hp (2WD).
Regardless of the engine, the 1998 Chevrolet S10 feels like a solid truck with pleasant, easy drivability. However, the V-6 certainly offers better acceleration than the base engine. The automatic transmission changes gears smoothly, although downshifts for power bursts can be delayed at low speeds.
Although the base, four-cylinder engine is available with both manual and automatic shifts, the manual gearbox is the better choice. While all models of the 1998 Chevrolet S10 absorb most bumps with ease, they tend to hop over sharp ridges and bumps with an empty cargo bed.
There are no crash tests scores available for the 1998 Chevrolet S10.
EPA Fuel Economy
- Spacious interior
- Good acceleration
- Good ride quality on 2WD models
- Responsive handling
You Won't Like
- Poor fuel economy
- Poor ride on 4WD models
- Lack of rear bench room
A leader in compact pickups.
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