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What’s New for 2018?
The 2018 Chevrolet Traverse is a fully redesigned model. It is built on an updated platform and includes all-new mechanics and electronics, as well as a new engine. Its interior and exterior styling has also seen a full redesign. In short, the new Traverse can be considered a completely different model from its predecessor.
Top 10 Reasons to Buy a 2018 Chevrolet Traverse – The Pros
1. Spacious Seating
The Traverse is a big car, and comes with a lot of seating space as a result. The front seats are very spacious, and the middle row is available in either a bench or a set of two captain’s chairs, with both options providing lots of head, shoulder and legroom. The third row is slightly smaller, but is easy to access, and can easily fit adult passengers, though not as comfortably as the second or third rows.
2. Lots of Cargo Space
Thanks to its size, the 2018 Traverse can offer a large cargo area in addition to its spacious seating. There is 23 cubic feet of room even before folding down the third row, making it one of the largest cargo areas in the class. There is also lots of extra storage throughout the cabin that is both convenient and expands the car’s total available payload.
3. Car-like Driving Feel
Despite its size, the 2018 Chevrolet Traverse handles itself very confidently, and is very easy to drive. The steering is optimized to make the car easy to control, the suspension absorbs the road nicely and the new nine-speed automatic transmission keeps acceleration jerks to a minimum. It may not be thrilling, but it is very functional.
4. Above-average Mileage
The V-6 engine that the 2018 Traverse comes equipped with delivers a good amount of power without requiring a lot of fuel. At 310 horsepower, it is fairly average when it comes to V-6 offerings in the class, but its 18 miles per gallon in the city, 27 mpg highway and 21 mpg combined economy values are solidly in the upper half of the mid-size SUV segment.
5. Plenty of Standard Equipment
Unlike some other mass-market models, which lead with a stripped down price leader trim line, even the most basic Traverse has plenty to offer. A 7-inch infotainment system with a highly-rated interface, three-zone climate controls, keyless start and a rearview camera are just some of the features that come standard on the base L. It is not, however, available with all-wheel drive, forcing buyers who want it to upgrade to the more expensive LS.
6. Excellent Infotainment System
Chevrolet’s new version of the MyLink infotainment system has been getting stellar reviews, and is standard on all Traverse models. It’s crisp full-color graphics, displayed on a sizeable screen, make it easy to navigate its straightforward menus, while Bluetooth, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, voice-commands, a whole rack of USB ports and in-car Wi-Fi provide it with an incredible range of functionality.
7. Standard HID Headlights
The standard HID headlights on the 2018 Traverse are not just a good styling decision, but help improve the car’s safety as well. Just like the tough small-overlap front crash test became the big safety concern a few years ago, poor headlight performance has been keeping many of the recent car models from exclusive safety pick lists. Thanks to its standard HID arrays, the new Traverse won’t be one of them.
8. Lots of High-end Safety Options
The Traverse has been marketed as a very family-friendly car, and it is equipped to back up that claim. In addition to the standard rearview camera and HID headlights, it can also be equipped with active lane control, a forward collision warning with either full- or low-speed automatic pre-collision braking and a radar-based blind spot and rear cross traffic monitoring system, among others. Another great standard feature is the Teen Driver system, that allows parents to put limits on the car’s performance or audio volume, as well as notify them when a car exceeds a certain range or triggers its active safety alerts.
9. Good Interior Quality
For a mass-market model, the 2018 Traverse exhibits a good variety of nice materials and above-average build quality, making for a pleasant cabin and suggesting good reliability in the future. As one moves up the different trim levels, each one offers some material and interior styling improvements, and the leather-equipped models definitely have a premium feel to them.
10. Premium High Country Model
High Country is Chevrolet’s luxury sub-brand, and the 2018 Chevrolet Traverse High Country delivers on that promise with a gusto. It is richly detailed in suede and wood accents, and has luxury grade leather upholstery over the seats and many contact surfaces.
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Reasons Not to Buy a 2018 Chevrolet Traverse – The Cons
1. Boring Exterior
Despite a full redesign, the 2018 Chevrolet Traverse still does not have an exterior that stands out from among the competitors. With many very good-looking competitors in the class, it feels unimaginative and a little outdated by comparison.
2. Only One Engine
The V-6 is, for now, the only engine available on the Traverse, but most other cars in the segment usually offer a four-cylinder option, as well as hybrid or diesel alternative powertrains. There is a turbocharged four-cylinder on the way for the Traverse, but it won’t be available until next year and is limited in availability.
3. Expensive Top Models
The Traverse Premier and High Country models are very nicely equipped, but are quite expensive in comparison to the rest of the models in its class. While priced to compete with some of the cheaper luxury SUV offerings, they short of the standards of that class.
How It Stacks up to the Competition
The primary competitors for the 2018 Chevrolet Traverse are other mid-size SUVs. The Traverse is one of the top vehicles in the class, with other notable vehicles including the Toyota Highlander and the Nissan Murano. The Highlander is distinguished by the sheer amount of safety features it offers standard and it has a hybrid model, but it is more expensive than a Traverse and doesn’t offer as much space. The Nissan Murano has very sporty styling and driving feel, and is very comfortable and nicely appointed, but it is missing the third row that adds to the versatility of the Traverse.
The 2018 Chevrolet Traverse is a solid improvement on the model, and offers a solid choice to anyone looking for a three-row SUV without too many frills. If the rather simple exterior styling is not an issue and the V-6 engine is a good choice for one’s driving style, the excellent space, equipment and driving performance are all decisive points in the Traverse’s favor.
• Why buy a 2017 Chevrolet Traverse? w/ pros vs cons