The 2013 Traverse FWD LTZ proved to be a great car to drive for the holidays. It was spacious enough to transport all those gift packages, luggage, food, and beverages necessary for family gatherings—and still have room for the family.
The Traverse also has what engineers call an “athletic new design” with a more expressive front end.
My test model came in a crystal red tintcoat with light and dark titanium inside. There is seating for seven passengers, with a captain’s chairs providing room to maneuver between seats.
I always appreciate a vehicle that remembers how I like things.
The third row has a split bench seat, and the most important seat—the driver’s—has a power seat adjuster and 8-way power recline with memory settings. I always appreciate a vehicle that remembers how I like things.
Other comfort and convenience features include air conditioning with tri-zone auto climate control, storage system for the rear cargo, heated and cooled seats for driver and front passenger, tilt and telescopic steering column, and leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls.
• Available Side Blind Zone Alert and Rear Cross Traffic Alert systems (standard on LTZ) use radar to watch spots the driver may not see and provide visible and audible warnings to help prevent collisions.
• Standard head curtain side air bags with rollover protection for outboard occupants in all seating rows. In addition to providing protection in moderate-to-severe side crashes, the roof-mounted head curtain air bags will deploy in a rollover to help provide increased occupant protection and containment.
• StabiliTrak electronic stability control with rollover mitigation technology is standard on all models and incorporates full-function traction control.
• Standard rearview camera system is designed to provide the driver with added capability to view what is in the rearward path of the vehicle.
• Standard four-wheel-disc brake system with ABS featuring smooth, quiet operation, longer pad life, and more resistance to brake pulsation.
• Seatbelt pretensioners reduce forward movement during a collision, and are standard on the front safety belts along with load-limiting retractors that help limit the belts’ impact on the occupants’ chest. The dynamic locking latch plate locks to hold the occupants’ pelvis in place.
• LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) child seat attachment system is included in outboard second-row seating positions.
• Tire pressure monitoring system is standard on all models.
• Strong body structure to absorb crash energy and provide a protective “safety cage” around occupants.
• Standard hill start assist brakes help reduce the tendency of a vehicle to roll forward or backward on a hill after the brake pedal is released by momentarily retaining pressure on the brake discs.
In addition there’s universal home remote, rear seat audio controls, headphone jacks, Bose premium audio system, and a 6.5” color touch radio. The test model is equipped with Chevrolet MyLink, and Sirius XM/HD XM radio. It is also equipped with the best possible feature for road trips—OnStar turn-by-turn directions.
The front seats have head restraints that can be adjusted for greater comfort, and the front passenger seat includes eight-way power with leather trim. New wood trim treatments are standard on LT and LTZ models.
The Traverse has flexible seating with class-leading people- and cargo-carrying capacity, entertainment, and other features. Second-row seating comes with a pair of captain’s chairs or a three-passenger bench. Each incorporates Traverse’s child-friendly, second-row SmartSlide feature that enables access to the third-row bench seat with one hand, and is easy for children to operate.
The third-row seat can comfortably accommodate three adult passengers. Traverse’s 24.4 cu ft (691 litres) of cargo room behind its third row is larger than that of many sport utility vehicles. Traverse also has easy-to-operate safety belts, up to 12 cup holders, and an available rear-seat entertainment system.
The 2013 Chevrolet Traverse FWD LTZ has a 3.6-liter SIDI V6 engine with brake assist and hill start—two more favorite features. Thanks to its direct injection, the engine has front fog lamps, 20” aluminum wheels, power rear liftgate (another beloved feature), remote vehicle start, and ultrasonic rear park assist.
The engine produces 288 HP and 270 lb-ft of torque. Its direct injection fuel delivery helps produce power similar to many V-8 engines, using regular unleaded gasoline. EPA fuel economy estimates of 17 mpg city/24 mpg highway for the front-wheel drive Traverse are highly competitive with other three-row crossovers, utilities, and minivans.
For 2013, Traverse enhanced its safety reputation with the industry’s first front-center side air bag, providing additional restraint to drivers and front passengers in far-side impact crashes where the affected occupant is on the opposite, non-struck side of the vehicle.
OnStar is standard on all Traverse models. It uses GPS and cellular phone technology to automatically call for help in the event of a crash. OnStar subscribers also can use the service to be Good Samaritans by sending help to other motorists, and to call for help in other non-crash emergencies.
For 2013, Traverse is offered in LS, LT, and LTZ models (with two LT packages: 1LT and 2LT), in both front-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive configurations. It is built in Lansing, Michigan.
The manufacturer’s suggested retail price for the test model Traverse is $40,425, but options including the color touch navigation system, trailering equipment, rear seat entertainment, red tintcoat, and destination charges brought the total price for the Crossover SUV to $44,410.
Jo Ann Holt is a journalist and car columnist based in Dallas and a member of Texas Automobile Writers Association (TAWA).
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