All-new 2018 Chevrolet Traverse redesign puts the emphasis on spaciousness

Introduced at last year’s Detroit Auto Show, the 2018 Chevrolet Traverse impressed with the new design’s massive interior space. Now that the Traverse has been on dealership lots for a while, the stylish midsize crossover is no less impressive.

What’s new for 2018

As an all-new model, the Traverse unibody crossover is redesigned inside and out, adding third-row legroom and cargo space, as well as a new suite of technology features. There are two trim new levels for 2018. The FWD-only Traverse RS adds blacked out wheels and accents, but the biggest differentiator from the other trims is its 2.0L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine. Conversely, the High Country trim, only available with AWD, is the most luxurious, with a starting price north of $50,000 and a standard feature list that includes all available safety and assist tech.

2018 Traverse engines

There are two engines in 2018 Traverse models. Most trims use a 3.6L V6 which makes 310 horsepower at 6,800 rpm and 266 lb-ft torque at 2,800 rpm. The RS trim’s 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder engine delivers less horsepower but more torque, with 257 hp at 5,500 rpm and 295 lb-ft at 3,000 rpm. Both engines are paired with 9-speed automatic transmissions.

2018 Traverse tech

All Traverse models have Traction Mode Select that allows the driver to select the driving mode for different road conditions. All trims also come standard with GM’s StabiliTrak Electronic Stability Control System with Traction Control. If needed, based on steering and vehicle travel, the Stabiltrak makes brake and engine torque adjustments to keep help maintain traction and driver control. This system cuts in automatically if it detects traction loss.

The Traverse has a fairly safety and driver-assistance feature list, but most are only available on the top trim levels.

All Traverse times have active aero shutters to cut front resistance, for incremental fuel economy improvement. GM’s Teen Driver tech, standard for all trims, allows the owner to activate all safety features and configure the crossover’s speed, radio volume, and seat belt use for specific drivers and send alerts if the driver doesn’t comply with the settings.

The Traverse has a fairly rich safety and driver-assistance feature list, but most are only available on the top trim levels. Adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go, for example, isn’t even available as an option for any but the High Country, the most expensive trim. To clarify safety and assistance feature availability, the tables below indicate which features are standard (in bold), optional, or not available for each of the seven 2018 Traverse trims.

How to choose a 2018 Chevrolet Traverse

The seven Traverse trims, from the least to most expensive, are differentiated in the text and tables below.

2018 Chevrolet Traverse L

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The base model 2018 Traverse L is available in FWD only, starting at $30,925. The L has few available options but comes sufficiently equipped for buyers who don’t care about a lot of luxury but want a reasonably priced, eight-passenger, three-row crossover. Standard features for the L and all higher-level trims include three-zone automatic climate control, power windows, keyless access with push-button start, 18-inch aluminum wheels, power-adjustable heated side mirrors, and a driver information center with a 3.5-inch monochrome display.

Tire pressure monitoring is standard as are a rear-vision camera, high-intensity discharge (HID) headlamps, GM’s Teen Driver utility, six USB ports, a digital display compass, and steering wheel controls for audio, phone, and cruise control. The Traverse’s standard MyLink infotainment system has a 7-inch display radio system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support and, like all trims, includes OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hot spot capability with a trial subscription.

2018 Chevrolet Traverse LS

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The $2,170 price bump from the base L model to the 2018 Traverse LS  adds deep-tinted glass, and the choice of FWD, ($33,095 to start), or AWD ($35,095 starting price). The LS trim also opens the Traverse option list, which is largely closed for the L.

2018 Chevrolet Traverse LT Cloth

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The first of two LT models, the 2018 Traverse LT Cloth starts at $35,595 with FWD and $39,395 for AWD. The LT includes a raft of upgrades and changes from the LS including a reduction in passenger capacity to seven because of the LT’s standard second-row captain’s chairs. The LT trim adds turn signal indicators to the side mirrors plus fog lamps, roof rails, and a trial subscription to the SiriusXM Satellite Radio All-Access Package. Other changes for the LT include an 8-way power driver seat with power lumbar control, heated front seats, a universal home remote controller, remote start, and a 3-spoke leather-wrapped steering wheel.

2018 Chevrolet Traverse LT Leather

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Stepping up comfort, convenience, and standard safety features, the 2018 Traverse LT Leather trim starts at $42,195 with FWD and $41,95 for the AWD model. Convenience features include a power liftgate with programmable height adjustment, remote start, and a 120-volt power outlet on the rear of the center console.

Traverse LT Leather driver and passengers ride in comfort with leather-appointed seating surfaces, a 6-way power front passenger seat with power lumbar control, and heated driver and front passenger seats. The LT Leather also upgrades the driver information center with 4.2-inch diagonal, multicolor display and adds an inside rearview auto-dimming rear camera mirror with full camera display.

A segment of the Traverse’s passive safety and driver assistance suite is standard on the LT Leather and above, include 360-degree surround bird’s-eye view, side blind zone and rear cross traffic alerts, and rear parking assistance with an audible warning.

The LT Leather’s infotainment system upgrades to the Chevrolet MyLink radio with navigation, an 8-inch diagonal color touch-screen with motorized power up/down and hidden storage, and a 10-speaker Bose Premium 10-speaker sound system with a Richbase woofer in the center console.

2018 Chevrolet Traverse RS

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The Traverse RS is a new model this year. Cast as the “sporty” trim, the Traverse RS is the sole model with the 257-hp 2.0L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine. The RS is only available with front-wheel drive and starts at $43,095. The other differences in the RS from the LT Leather trim are a blacked out exterior with a black chrome grille, a black Chevy bowtie, and dark painted 20-inch wheels.

2018 Chevrolet Traverse Premier

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Formerly the top model, the 2018 Traverse Premier is now the second most luxurious trim, but it’s not lacking. Starting at $45,495 for the FWD version and $48,395 with AWD, the Premier has LED D-Optic bifunction headlamps, a hands-free power liftgate, a heated steering wheel, ventilated front seats, and heated second-row outboard seats.

The Premier also has wireless device charging, a dual-outlet exhaust with rectangular tips, driver memory settings for the driver seat, mirror, and steering column settings, and auto-dimming outside mirrors.

The Premier trim’s $1,845 (list) Redline Edition package option adds black wheels with red accents, black exterior accents, dark taillamps, a two-panel sunroof, and a trailering package with heavy-duty cooling and a trailer hitch.

2018 Chevrolet Traverse High Country

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A new trim and available with AWD only, the 2018 Traverse High Country (starting price $53,095) has the highest luxury level and the brand’s full technology suite. All High Country models have unique Loft Brown leather trim plus 20-inch polished wheels, D-Optic headlamps, and power-fold third-row seats. The line leader’s drivetrain is unique as well, with an all-wheel-drive system with an automatic locking rear differential. Chevy’s trailering package includes a heavy-duty cooling system and a trailer hitch.

Other High County standard features include adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go, automatic high beams, forward collision alert and following distance indicator, front pedestrian braking, lane keep assist with lane departure warning. The High Country is the only trim with adaptive cruise control – it’s not even an option on other trims. A power sunroof and power-folding third-row 60/40 split-bench seat are also standard with the High Country.

Passive Safety/Driver Assist Features 2018 Traverse L  2018 Traverse LS 2018 Traverse LT Cloth 2018 Traverse LT Leather
Rearview camera with backup assist gridlines Standard Standard Standard Standard
Blind spot monitoring with cross-traffic alert Optional Optional Standard Standard
Low speed forward automatic braking Not available Not available Not available Not available
Adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go Not available Not available Not available Not available
Auto high-beam headlamp  Not available Not available Not available Not available
Lane-keeping assist, lane-keeping alert Not available Not available Not available Not available
Pre-collision assist with pedestrian detection Not available Not available Not available Not available
Parking assistance — rear Optional Optional Optional Standard
360-degree camera  Not available Not available Not available Standard
 Following distance indicator Not available Not available Not available Not available
Passive Safety/Driver Assist Features 2018 Traverse RS 2018 Traverse Premier 2018 Traverse High Country
Rearview camera with backup assist gridlines Standard Standard Standard
Blind spot monitoring with cross-traffic alert Standard Standard Standard
Low speed forward automatic braking Not available Optional (FWD), Standard (AWD)  Standard
Adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go Not available Not available  Standard
Auto high-beam headlamp Not available  Optional (FWD), Standard (AWD)  Standard
Lane-keeping assist, lane-keeping alert Not available  Optional (FWD), Standard (AWD) Standard
Pre-collision assist with pedestrian detection Not available  Optional (FWD), Standard (AWD) Standard
Parking assistance — rear Standard Standard Standard
360-degree camera Standard Standard Standard
 Following distance indicator Not available Optional (FWD), Standard (AWD) Standard
Trim 2018 Traverse L 2018 Traverse LS 2018 Traverse LT Cloth 2018 Traverse LT Leather
Base price 4×2 $30,925 $33,095 $35,595 $42,195
Base price 4×4 Not available $35,095 $39,395 $44,195
Drive wheels FWD FWD/AWD FWD/AWD FWD/AWD
Base engine  3.6L V6  3.6L V6  3.6L V6  3.6L V6
Base horsepower 310 hp @ 6,800 rpm 310 hp @ 6,800 rpm 310 hp @ 6,800 rpm 310 hp @ 6,800 rpm
Base torque 266 lb-ft @ 2,800 rpm 266 lb-ft @ 2,800 rpm 266 lb-ft @ 2,800 rpm 266 lb-ft @ 2,800 rpm
Transmission 9-speed automatic 9-speed automatic 9-speed automatic 9-speed automatic
Fuel Regular gas  Regular gas Regular gas Regular gas
Fuel capacity 4×2 19.4 gallons 19.4 gallons 19.4 gallons 19.4 gallons
Fuel capacity 4×4 Not applicable 21.7 gallons 21.7 gallons 21.7 gallons
Fuel economy 4×2 18 mpg city/27 mpg highway/21 mpg combined 18 mpg city/27 mpg highway/21 mpg combined 18 mpg city/27 mpg highway/21 mpg combined 18 mpg city/27 mpg highway/21 mpg combined
Fuel economy 4×4 Not applicable 17 mpg city/25 mpg highway/20 mpg combined 17 mpg city/25 mpg highway/20 mpg combined 17 mpg city/25 mpg highway/20 mpg combined
Base wheels 18-inch 18-inch 18-inch 20-inch
Body style 4-door SUV 4-door SUV 4-door SUV 4-door SUV
Passengers 8 8 7 7
Third-row seating 3 3 3 3
Storage behind third-row seats 98.2 cubic feet 98.2 cubic feet 98.2 cubic feet 98.2 cubic feet
Storage behind second-row seats 58.1 cubic feet 58.1 cubic feet 58.1 cubic feet 58.1 cubic feet
Storage behind first-row seats 23 cubic feet 23 cubic feet 23 cubic feet 23 cubic feet
Max Towing capacity 4×2 5,000 pounds 5,000 pounds 5,000 pounds 5,000 pounds
Max Towing capacity 4×4 Not applicable 5,000 pounds 5,000 pounds 5,000 pounds
Seat upholstery Cloth Cloth Cloth Leather
Trim 2018 Traverse RS 2018 Traverse Premier 2018 Traverse High Country
Base price 4×2 $43,095 $45,495 Not available
Base price 4×4 Not available $48,395 $53,095
Drive wheels  FWD FWD/AWD AWD
Base engine 2.0L Turbocharged 4-cylinder 3.6L V6 3.6L V6
Base horsepower 257 hp @ 5,500 rpm 310 hp @ 6,800 rpm 310 hp @ 6,800 rpm
Base torque 295 lb-ft @ 3,000 rpm 266 lb-ft @ 2,800 rpm 266 lb-ft @ 2,800 rpm
Transmission 9-speed automatic 9-speed automatic 9-speed automatic
Fuel Regular gas Regular gas Regular gas
Fuel capacity 4×2 19.4 gallons 19.4 gallons Not applicable
Fuel capacity 4×4 Not applicable 21.7 gallons 21.7 gallons
Fuel economy 4×2 20 mpg city/26 mpg highway/20 mpg combined 18 mpg city/27 mpg highway/21 mpg combined Not applicable
Fuel economy 4×4 Not applicable 17 mpg city/25 mpg highway/20 mpg combined 17 mpg city/25 mpg highway/20 mpg combined
Base wheels 20-inch 20-inch 20-inch
Body style 4-door SUV 4-door SUV 4-door SUV
Passengers 7 7 7
Third-row seating 3 3 3
Storage behind third-row seats 98.2 cubic feet 98.2 cubic feet 98.2 cubic feet
Storage behind second-row seats 58.1 cubic feet 58.1 cubic feet 58.1 cubic feet
Storage behind first-row seats 23 cubic feet 23 cubic feet 23 cubic feet
Max Towing capacity 4×2 1,500 pounds 5,000 pounds Not applicable
Max Towing capacity 4×4 Not applicable 5,000 pounds 5,000 pounds
Seat upholstery Leather Perforated leather Perforated leather
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