The 2018 model of the Chevrolet Traverse has a standard powertrain carrying a 3.6-liter V6 engine. The unit produces 310 hp and 266 lb-ft of torque. The power is mated with a nine-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive can be configured for all trims except for the RS and High Country trims. The RS trim is only available in front-wheel-drive and comes with its own 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 engine with 257 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. The top-of-the-line High Country trim is only available in an all-wheel-drive configuration. For Chevy’s midsize SUV, the six-cylinder powerplant can haul smoothly even when the vehicle is fully-occupied. From a standstill, the auto can reach 60 mph in about six and a half seconds. With the powertrain upgrades for this year, it has no problem in merging with highway traffic or overtaking at high speeds. The handling displays composure in going through corners, and there is enough grip at reasonable speeds. Despite not being the most athletic, the steering is accurate enough to help the auto maneuver around better. The weight of the steering also requires a little amount of effort. Calling upon the brakes is a reliable experience, as shown by the stability under heavy braking. The firm pedal helps in the ease of use, too. Meanwhile, the stopping force is predictable and it inspires confidence in controlling this heavy family carrier.
The L and LS trims of the Traverse come standard with LED running lights, xenon headlights, heated mirrors, engine stop-start, keyless entry, automatic climate control, Bluetooth, 4G LTE, Wi-Fi, six USB ports, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and an infotainment system with a 7-inch touchscreen. The L is different from the LS trim because it is built-to-order. The LT Cloth trim builds on the base trim and includes mirror-integrated turn signals, power-adjustable driver seat and second-row captain’s chairs. The Convenience and Driver Confidence package includes a power liftgate, remote engine start, heated front seats, digital instrument cluster, upgraded 8-inch touchscreen display and several advanced safety and driver aids. The Trailering package includes a trailer hitch and a heavy-duty cooling system. The LT Leather trim builds on the previous trim and includes an auto-dimming rearview mirror with a rearview camera display, power-adjustable passenger seat, 120V power outlet and a ten-speaker Bose sound system. The RS trim has the different powertrain but is similarly equipped as the LT leather trim. Unique exterior appointments distinguish the RS trim from the rest. The Premier trim includes features from the LT trims and adds LED headlights, auto-dimming side mirrors, hands-free liftgate, ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, a power-adjustable steering wheel and driver seat memory settings. The Driver Confidence II package adds more advanced safety and driver aids. The Trailering package and adaptive headlights are inclusive when specifying the Premier trim in all-wheel drive. The top-of-the-line High Country trim comes with all the bells and whistles and adds an auto-locking rear differential and a power folding third-row seat. It is exclusively an all-wheel-drive model.
The 2018 Traverse was tested by the NHTSA and it earned four stars in the frontal crash test, five stars in the side crash test and four stars in the rollover test. Overall, it achieved a five-star safety rating from the NHTSA. Standard features for safety include a rearview camera and a teen-driver monitoring system. Advanced safety and driver aids are optional features which include rear parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, a top-down parking camera system, forward collision alert with pedestrian detection, low-speed automatic braking, lane departure warning and intervention and automatic high beams.
The 2018 Traverse has a length of 204.3 inches, a width of 78.6 inches, a height of 70.7 inches and a wheelbase of 120.9 inches. The Traverse has been redesigned for the 2018 model year and is now in its second generation series. The 2018 unit is longer and it appears stockier than the 2017 model. Wheels come standard at an 18-inch diameter and 20-inch wheels are optional. The tint of the glass is what separates the L and LS trims. The roof rails and sunroof are only available for the LT and higher trim levels. The RS trim and the Redline Edition package for the Premier trim feature black exterior appointments.
The doors open wide and entering the cabin is not a hassle. For all three rows of seats, headroom is generous even for the tall passenger. The legroom for the first and second row has more than enough allowance for movement, but the third row feels tight with how it compresses the legs of the passengers. Fortunately, the second-row seats can slide to adjust the legroom. There is room for up to eight people inside, but opting for the Captain’s Chairs for the second row reduces the seating capacity by one. The seats have a comfortable cushion that does not flatten out on long drives. However they are on the flatter side, and the first-row seats could use more lateral support. Leather quality may not be the best but it appears good enough to last. The ride quality leans more towards comfort because of how the suspension is set up. It remains poised on smooth pavement and bumps. Potholes have minimal transference to the body while the noise from the wind and road is not a nuisance to the interior ambiance.
Behind the third row of seats is 23 cu-ft of space, and behind the second row of seats is 57.8 cu-ft of space. Folding down the second and third rows opens up 98.2 cu-ft of space for cargo.