Size matters in today’s automotive world and many of the most popular picks have the lavish dimensions to prove this. Roomy crossovers are hot sellers, and you can find midsize models with the kind of spacious three-row seating that was once the sole provenance of minivans and full-size SUVs.
The drawback to this trend is that larger vehicles often come with poorer fuel economy. Gas prices may be cheap right now, but what goes down eventually comes back up, and it makes sense to always keep your fuel bill in mind when making a purchasing decision.
Redesigned for 2018, the Chevrolet Traverse delivers a package that satisfies both sides of this argument. The current Traverse is roomier than its predecessor, and it comes with a longer wheelbase that increases legroom for those in the second and third rows. Passengers enjoy generous accommodations, and cargo doesn’t have it too bad, either: The Traverse provides an impressive 98.5 cubic feet of cargo capacity with its second and third rows folded.
Mileage doesn’t suffer at the hands of this growth spurt. In fact, a new 9-speed automatic transmission helps the Traverse improve its fuel economy by up to 4 mpg combined.
The Traverse makes a strong case for bigger being better, but that doesn’t mean it’s free of flaws.
Here are eight great traits of the 2018 Chevrolet Traverse… along with one weakness you should keep in mind before committing to a purchase.
More and more midsize SUVs these days offer third-row seating, but in many cases, adult passengers aren’t exactly going to be lining up to spend time in these cramped quarters. Third rows are often best left to kids who aren’t big enough to have an issue with the tight legroom.
The 2018 Traverse takes a different approach, delivering a third row that’s actually got enough legroom for adults. With a healthy 33.7 inches of legroom on board, the Traverse provides third-row seating that’s relatively kind to fully grown stems.
People usually have a reason for selecting certain vehicle types. With subcompacts, it’s all about affordability. With hot hatches, performance is king. And with midsize SUVs like the Traverse, buyers often care a great deal about cargo capacity.
The Traverse graciously bears the weight of these expectations, and it’s one of the top choices in its segment if you’re looking for superior cargo capacity. There’s 23 cubic feet of capacity with all seats in place, and this swells to a magnanimous 58.1 cubic feet with the third row folded. With both the second and third rows down for the count, cargo space blossoms to a palatial 98.5 cubic feet.
If you’re looking for an SUV than enables Home Depot shopping binges, this is it.
Many of us don’t consider ourselves to be particularly flexible, and extreme dexterity is usually reserved for ballerinas and Olympic gymnasts. For this reason, it can be a real hassle to access the rearmost seating of the typical three-row SUV.
The engineers and designers at Chevrolet have heard the anguished protests of your stiff and unyielding joints, and they’ve responded by giving the Traverse functionality that simplifies access to the third row. The 2018 Traverse comes with a split-folding second-row seat that can tip up and slide forward, even with a forward-facing child seat strapped in. This amenity gives you the room you need to easily perch yourself in the third row.
Driver-assistive technology has made things like blind spots a non-issue. This technology is your hard-working guardian angel on the road, seeing obstacles that you’re unable to view and issuing a warning if there is danger ahead.
New items are always being added to the lineup of useful driver aids, and the 2018 Traverse is available with some of the most cutting-edge choices in this tool kit. The Traverse helps make you a better driver with available blind-spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, forward automatic braking, adaptive cruise control, and lane-keep assist with lane departure warning. And it gives you support when parking by providing an available surround-view camera and rear parking sensors.
A rearview camera is standard, and there’s also an available rear camera mirror. This feature uses a rear-mounted camera system to feed images to the vehicle’s rearview mirror, providing you with a wider rearward perspective than you’d get by merely relying on the mirror’s reflection.
If you’re in the market for a sprawling midsize SUV like the Traverse, there’s a good chance that you’ve got one or more sprawling teenagers living under your roof. If they’re of driving age, it’s a situation that can create lots of worry and fear. As a parent, you want to make sure your kids are making smart decisions on the road, even when you’re not with them in the vehicle.
That’s where the Traverse’s standard Teen Driver feature comes in. This amenity works to enforce many of the sage guidelines you’ve passed on to your young driver.
You can use the Teen Driver feature to automatically mute the Traverse’s stereo until front-seat passengers have been safely buckled in. This feature will also activate all of the vehicle’s available driver-assistive technologies, ensuring that your teen has the support to make the safest choices. Chevy’s Teen Driver tool can also be used to generate a report card that analyzes your child’s driving behavior, providing you and your teen with information that can help identify areas for improvement.
If you’re a busy parent or pet owner, it’s all too easy to hurry out of the vehicle to run an errand and forget about the child or pet you’ve got seated in the back row.
The Traverse comes with a feature that issues a chime after you’ve turned off the vehicle if the system determines that a rear door was opened at the start of your journey. This chime lets you know you need to check the back seat for pets or passengers.
Remember when features like Wi-Fi hotspots were limited to high-dollar luxury cars? Those days are behind us. Every year, this kind of connectivity becomes more and more accessible.
The 2018 Traverse helps families everywhere stay online on the road with standard Apple CarPlay/Android Auto smartphone mirroring and a Wi-Fi hotspot featuring 4G LTE connectivity. These amenities help you to easily keep in touch even when you’re behind the wheel.
Driving in a snowstorm or pelting rain can be a harrowing experience. The 2018 Traverse comes with a feature that helps you tweak performance in ways that can help you drive more safely and securely in rough weather.
Called Traction Mode Select, this amenity allows you to choose performance settings designed to handle challenges such as snow and towing. On models equipped with available all-wheel drive, Traction Mode Select comes with an Off-Road setting that boosts handling on grass, gravel, and dirt.
In recent years, active safety features have become more and more accessible. These days, there are even budget-priced cars that offer a healthy assortment of driver aids on their base models.
Sadly, the Traverse is not part of this movement to democratize driver-assistive technology. While this Chevy offers a bevy of helpful active safety features, many of the most desirable amenities—such as forward collision alert and front automatic braking—are available only on the top trim levels. This is unfortunate, since it places this life-saving technology out of reach for those buyers with the tightest budgets.
If you need a midsize crossover that’s roomy enough to meet the needs of a busy family, the 2018 Chevrolet Traverse has got you covered.
For the gangly teen in your life, the Traverse has a third-row seat with enough legroom to handle growing limbs, and its standard Teen Driver feature can assist with essential Driver’s Ed.
Family transportation has always been serious business. And the Traverse is more capable than ever of taking it all in stride.