Let’s sum things up this way:    I’ve got a friend who’s sold high-end German vehicles for the past four or five years.    She jumped in….and before she even pushed “start”, said “This is nice”.

 

And a couple of miles later, she simply capped it off with a soft “Wow….I like it!”  And I think she’s right.

 

This is the all-new for ’18 Chevy Traverse with a much more muscular and chiseled exterior, and a more luxurious and feature-filled interior.

 

This Traverse no longer screams “Mommy-Mobile”.   In addition to its’ athletic looks, it’s 310 HP,  3.6 liter V-6 gives the ’18 Traverse the hustle and muscle to tow up to 5,000 lbs.

 

Much like Chevy’s Tahoe, the similar-sized Traverse gives you the choice of either 7 or 8 passenger three-row seating….but at close to a 10K savings.   If you don’t need all the towing power of the V-8 powered Tahoe, Chevy’s new Traverse is a viable option….and one that’ll get you an EPA-rated 18 city / 27 hwy MPG’s.

 

Pricing is roughly from 30 to $50,000, with six different versions available.   Our low $40’s list price LT test vehicle didn’t leave much out…with heated leather and second row captain’s chairs.

 

Add another 3K and change, and pick up ventilated front seats, heated rears, heated steering, wireless charging and more.   And from there to 50K you can just add luxury….more luxury….all the way up to excess.

 

While looks, handling and performance are all a step up from the previous Traverse, technology is perhaps becoming GM’s middle name.

 

The ’18 Traverse was my first experience with a rear camera mirror.  I predict that this’ll become a government-mandated industry standard in a few years.  GM has it today.   While you still have the option of selecting a standard rear-view mirror, you also can select a TV-camera view, which gives the driver a clear and much-wider-angle view of everything behind….and a lot in your blind-side, too.

 

But while giving the driver a much safer look behind, you need to switch back to standard rear-view mirror view to see what your rascals in the second and third rows are up to.

 

And while not necessarily “technology” per se, Chevy offers a few more quite cool things.

 

Under the load floor “secret storage”.   Check.

 

Hands-free tailgate.    Check.

 

Child-seat-friendly second row.   Check.

 

But here’s one that not too many competitors have:   A secret storage compartment behind the in-dash monitor.   Big enough for a wallet or small purse, this secret space behind the 8” in-dash screen is lockable via a 4-digit pin…making it all but valet-proof.   Pretty cool.

 

And then there’s Chevy’s Teen Driver Mode….which automatically mutes the sound until ALL seat belts are fastened and then engages ALL lane departure and other alerts….and then provides Dad or Mom a “report card” on your precious one’s travels.    Big Brother?   Yes.    Life-saving?    Yes.

 

If you need to tow over 5,000 pounds, look at a Tahoe or one of its’ competitors.

 

But if seating 7 or 8 in whatever level of luxury and tech you’re comfy paying for…and towing up to 5,000 lbs is more like you…Chevy’s new-for-’18 Traverse might just be worth a look.

 

dscn9611 Auto Nsider Review: 2018 Chevrolet Traverse

(Bob Jackson – CBS Local)

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