This week I bring you the all-new 2018 Chevy Traverse, a large SUV meant to compete with the likes of the Ford Explorer, Toyota Highlander, and Honda Pilot.
The new Traverse is sleeker on the outside than the previous version, featuring a new front fascia with fog lights and a new rear look with a built-in spoiler and dual exhaust. The 20” wheels look terrific and overall, you see styling cues from the popular Chevy Tahoe and Equinox SUVs.
Under the hood, you’ll find a 3.6-liter V6 engine and a 9-speed automatic transmission that is putting out 310-horses. My review vehicle is all-wheel drive, but two-wheel drive is standard. There is also a 2-liter turbocharged engine available.
The 2018 Traverse comes in six trim levels. Starting at the bottom, there is an L, LS, LT, Premier, a new sporty RS model, and I am reviewing the High Country, which is the top-of-the-line luxury edition.
You can tell as soon as you enter the cabin that the High Country has a premium interior. Stitching is everywhere and a mix ofe soft touch materials really set everything off. The interior is not only super nice, it is functional.
The gauges are bright and colorful and in the center of them is a driver information center that operates from the steering wheel, which is heated and power adjusting.
I love the center stack with a couple of cup holders and a wireless phone charger. On the right side of the console is a slot for a tablet or small laptop, yet still accessible to the driver. You can manually shift the transmission from the top of the gear shifter and next to that is a knob to change the drive modes.
Above the center console is the Chevy MyLink system, which operates by an 8” color touch screen. From there, you operate the Bose sound system, navigation system, Bluetooth, Apple and Android connections, and it comes with 4G LTE connectivity. You can also project your phone onto the screen.
Also from there, you operate OnStar, many of the settings, and you can get real-time weather information. This is where the rear camera with cross-traffic alert is housed. Also cool, with the push of a button, the touchscreen raises to reveal a hidden compartment.
The power, heated and air-conditioned front seats are extremely comfortable, and the Traverse has a ton of headroom, even with the dual-pane moon roofs overhead.
Moving to the second row, my review vehicle has captain chairs making this a 7-passenger, but you can get a bench seat too, giving it seating for 8. The third-row seat is as roomy as any I’ve seen without going all the way to an SUV the size of large ones like Tahoe and Suburban.
To get to the third-row seat, the right side second-row seat tilts and slides forward allowing easy access, and it is simple to operate. It would even work great with a child seat strapped in, without the child in it of course.
When you go around to the tailgate, it is power and works hands-free by waving your foot under the bumper. There is actually very good cargo area behind the third-row seat, and there is more storage underneath. It is clear GM set out to make the new Traverse extremely roomy. With all the seats folded down, there is whopping 98.2 cubic feet of storage.
The High Country comes extremely well equipped and everything you see comes at no charge including keyless entry and remote start.
On the safety front, Traverse has it all. You get rear park assist, lane change alert, blind spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, and forward collision alert with automatic braking.
Some features I really like include Teen Driver, so you can monitor and control your kids or a valet parker. It also has the rear seat reminder. If you open either of the back doors, when you get where you are going, it will remind you there may be something in the back seat, like a kid or a pet. The rear view mirror is pretty amazing, too. It works like a normal mirror, but with the flip of a switch, it turns into a wide-angle rear video camera. This is really useful if you have three people in far back seat blocking your vision.
The Traverse rides and handles really well for its size, is very quiet inside, and you can choose from four different drive modes with the all-wheel system. One of those modes is for trailer towing, which keeps the gears lower for pulling loads of up to 5000 pounds.
Fuel economy is good for a 4400-pound SUV. It is rated at 17 in town, 25 on the road, and 20 overall. The one negative about this vehicle is the start/stop feature, which cannot be disabled.
Price-wise, this ultra-loaded Traverse High Country comes in with a sticker price of $52,995, which I consider to be a good buy based on the terrific interior, vast amount of room, and high level of standard equipment. I think Chevy has a real winner here.
2018 Chevrolet Traverse High Country
- What I liked most: The roomy interior, interior quality, and driving characteristics.
- What I would change: Please, let me turn off the start/stop system.
- MSRP: Base price $52,000. As equipped $52,995.
- Fuel Economy: 17-city/25-highway, 20 combined.
- Odometer reading when tested: 1800 miles.
- Official Color: Satin Steel Metallic.
- Weight: 4362 Pounds.
- Length-Width-Height: 204.3” long/78.6” wide/70.7” high.
- Fuel Tank Capacity: 21.7 gallons with filler on the driver’s side.
- Towing Capacity: 5000 pounds.
- Spare Tire: Yes, but a compact one.
- Final Assembly Point: Lansing, Michigan.
- 2018 Traverse in a few words: Super roomy, very enjoyable SUV. Great value.
- Warranty: 3-year/36,000 mile bumper-to-bumper, 5-year/60,000 mile power train warranty with roadside assistance, two free maintenance visits, and courtesy transportation.
- Manufacturer’s website: Chevrolet
Photo Credit: Chevrolet