2020 Chevrolet Traverse
The mid-size, three-row SUV segment continues to show strength, even as the market slowed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It shows that families still want a great vehicle to go to places – even after this is over.
The edge on this segment relies on not only how many people you can fit inside. Rather, it comes down to if they have enough space and comfort across all three rows.
The last generation Chevrolet Traverse was known for good third row space. This current generation model not only have the task to match that reputation, but to improve upon it.
We got the chance to drive a 2020 Chevrolet Traverse to find out if this is the right family vehicle for you.
The Traverse offers a bold, but handsome design. It starts with a large grille area with chrome horizontal trim that dominates the front clip. Perhaps it seems that the headlights should be larger. Still its bold front end gives way to a sculpted profile and a nicely done liftgate area.
Our tester is the LT model with all-wheel-drive. The standard 18-inch alloy wheels seem a bit small on this vehicle. However, it all seems to fit to this mid-level model.
The LT trim level has two options: Cloth or Leather. Our tester was the former with yards of cloth between all three rows. The front seats are large, yet they were a bit uncomfortable at some points. The backrest seemed a bit too flat, while there was bolstering that provided adequate support. Second-row space was set by two captain’s chairs in our tester, enabling greater access to the third row. A second-row bench seat for three is standard.
The third row can fit two adults, but not for long journeys. They are perfect for growing children. However, the sliding mechanism for third row access is located only on the passenger side. Though this model had the second row captain’s chairs, we do not recommend that children use the opening between the two seats to exit the third row properly.
However, the Traverse offers very large cargo hold. It starts from a generous 23.0 cubic feet behind the third row to a massive 98.2 cubic feet with both the second and third rows folded down.
The instrumentation has a set of two smallish dials for the speedometer and tachometer, bridged by a split area with the fuel and temperature gauge on top and the digital information screen on the bottom. The center stack is dominated by the infotainment screen with the climate controls down below. For tall drivers, some controls might not be visible to spot, such as the headlights. We also found the gear lever having a long travel for some drivers.
Power came from a 310-horsepower 3.6-liter V6 that provided smooth power on the highway and in the city. This engine is connected to a nine-speed automatic transmission and the all-wheel-drive system. We experienced a fuel economy with an average of 22.6 MPG.
We liked the ride quality of the Traverse. The smooth ride is great whether there are seven or eight on board or just one. You can thank the long 120.9-inch wheelbase for making sure we are comfortable on the highway. Handling was stable with some lean and roll experienced in some turns and on-ramps. One thing we were concerned about was maneuverability. When we tried some parking, the Traverse felt wider than it looks – measured out to the mirrors at 78.6 inches.
Steering is actually pretty decent in terms of feel and response. The turning radius was fine for the size, as well on-center feel. Braking was good, however. The pedal feel is solid with good normal and panic stops from the four-disc system.
The 2020 Chevrolet Traverse lineup starts at $30,995. Our LT Cloth tester came with a sticker price of $41,020. Traverse customers have a choice of seven different trim levels.
As we stated before, the mid-size, three-row SUV segment is a strong one these days. The Chevrolet Traverse is up against some stiff competition, including the Kia Telluride, Hyundai Palisade, Volkswagen Atlas, Ford Explorer, GMC Acadia, Dodge Durango, Toyota Highlander, Nissan Pathfinder, Subaru Ascent, Mazda CX-9, Honda Pilot, and Mitsubishi Outlander.
However, you have to know what you want and how you want your family to be comfortable on the road. That is where the Chevrolet Traverse wins in offering superior space for up to eight people across three rows. If this is your choice for your next family vehicle, make sure your decision is based on interior space and ride quality as your priorities. You may just have a good vehicle in your stable.
Story Credits: CarSoup Editors