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Although the Chevy Traverse has only been around for just over a decade now, in that time it has established itself as one of the premier SUVs on the market and remains a popular choice for many drivers. This means that when you are shopping for a used Chevy Traverse, you will have a lot of options to choose from with plenty of different used models available. Despite the fact it has only been around for just over 10 years, there have been two generations for the Traverse so far, with distinct options and features between them, so finding the right one is still important.
The Chevy Traverse is a full-size, crossover SUV, rather than a traditional SUV option. That means that it is built in a unibody style upon a car platform, instead of using a body-on-frame design on a truck platform like a non-crossover SUV. A full-size model like this will typically utilize the body-on-frame design, but with a unibody, you are able to get a lot of features and a level of performance from a used Chevy Traverse that you might not easily find elsewhere.
Choosing the right used Chevy Traverse for what you need can be tricky, but it really comes down to recognizing the features and options that are right for you, and then finding a model that checks all of your boxes. The first generation for the Traverse debuted in model year 2009 and ran through 2017, so most of the used models you find will be from this generation. Two engines were available during this time and while front-wheel drive has been standard, all-wheel drive has been an available option, so you will find some used models with that drivetype.
The second generation of the Traverse kicked off for 2018 and continues to this day, so if you find more-recent models, then they will be from this generation. Different engines have been available recently, including a turbo I4, and a 9-speed automatic transmission makes driving a second-generation used Chevy Traverse a lot of fun. These are the models that you will find coming off a lease right now, which have been treated incredibly well and are in absolutely gorgeous condition. With numerous trim levels available in both generations, you will find a lot of options and freedom to get just what you need when shopping a used Traverse.
Finding the right vehicle for what you need can be tricky, but there are a lot of reasons to pick a used Chevy Traverse, starting with its impressive size and powerful performance. Although the Traverse delivers the nimble performance of a crossover SUV, as a full-size model, it provides you with a tremendous amount of interior room for both passengers and cargo. The Traverse has three rows of seating that offers room for either seven or eight people, depending on how it was configured when bought new. There are two seats in the front, as you would expect, and a three-person bench in the third row––the second row can be either a bench or a pair of seats, so you can find a used Chevy Traverse that works for your particular needs.
All of that interior room is great for passengers, but it is also fantastic for loading up with all the gear and items you need for either work or play. A used Chevy Traverse is a fantastic option for big families, since you get so much space inside for family members, as well as plenty of cargo space for major grocery trips, running errands, and handling everything else you need to do. You can also put all that interior cargo space to good use for your recreational activities, making the Traverse a perfect choice for loading up for long road trips, going camping, or doing some tailgating on the weekend.
Since you can find a used Chevy Traverse with AWD, this is also a fantastic option for dealing with rough weather and other tricky road conditions. Whether you like to head out into the wilds for some hiking or camping, prefer to stay around town, or both, the Traverse gives you the performance you need to be able to get wherever you have to go. When looking at a used Chevy Traverse from the second generation, you can find all of the amazing technology and safety features you want, since they will be from the last few years. And if you find a model with the impressive High Country trim, then you can get some stunning luxury features that make the Traverse a far more sophisticated option than you might expect.
When it was launched, the 2009 Traverse had a 3.6-liter engine that produced 288 horsepower/270 lb.-ft. of torque. On lower trim levels, the single-outlet exhaust system Traverse only produced 281 horsepower/253 lb.-ft. of torque. This engine pairs to a six-speed automatic transmission, and sends power to either the front wheels (FWD) or all the wheels (AWD), depending on the model that’s chosen. EPA estimates stand at 16 mpg city/23 mpg highway for AWD, and 17 mpg city/24 mpg highway for FWD.
Overall, the performance strikes a nice balance between power and fuel-efficiency for a full-size crossover SUV.
In 2010, not much changed. The Traverse still provides balanced performance, great ride quality, spacious seating (eight passengers), lots of cargo space, and top safety scores. Truly everything consumers want and more from a full-size crossover.
In NHTSA crash safety tests, the Traverse scored 5/5 stars in head-on/side-impact collision categories, and a top rating of Good from the IIHS in frontal-offset/side-impact tests. Some of the standard features found on the Traverse are antilock disc brakes, traction/stability control, front seat side-impact airbags, and side curtain airbags. You’ll also get GM’s OnStar service, which includes turn-by-turn navigation, and hands-free phone connectivity.
In 2011, heated cloth seats became available in the Traverse LT, and the audio system had its USB input relocated. Other than that, the interior remains the same, and it’s still the real selling point for the vehicle.
An attractive and eye-catching two-tone color scheme, chrome trim, brushed aluminum, and simple to operate/easy-to-read gauges are present. While there’s still a few low-quality plastics floating around, they don’t dominate the cabin by any means. Some might complain the audio and climate control buttons are too similar and small, but the smaller size helps save space in the cabin.
Besides, there’s plenty of room for passengers and storage alike. With seating for up to eight, and 24.4 cu. ft. of storage space behind the seats — 116.4 cu. ft. when seats are folded down — it has a cabin that’s more spacious than most others in the segment.
Since there were no major changes for 2012, let’s discuss the trim levels available.
The Traverse comes in LS, LT, and LTZ trim levels. The standard equipment for the LS includes eight-passenger seating, split-folding second-and third-row bench seats, air-conditioning, full power accessories, OnStar, 17-inch wheels, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, and a six-speaker sound system with a CD player. If you consider CDs to be outdated, then satellite radio and an auxiliary audio jack will suit your fancy.
The midrange and range-topping trims add even more features, such as second-row captain’s chairs (on the sub 2LT trim), rearview camera, 10-speaker Bose sound system with USB/iPod interface and rear audio system controls, Bluetooth, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.
Those are only a few of the features, and some of the ones found on the LTZ can be added on to the lower trim as stand alone optional features.
Multiple changes came down the pipe for the Traverse during the 2013 model year, such as refreshed exterior styling, improved interior materials, and even a new electronics interface. Additional safety features have been tagged on as well, bumping the overall safety score of the Traverse up to 5/5 stars in the NHTSA.
Although it’s almost completely redesigned, you can still tell it’s a Traverse. The signature split grille design by Chevy is gone, replaced by a front-end that looks a lot better for a crossover of this size, giving it a much more stalwart appearance compared to the previous generation. The new design also has a slimming effect for the Traverse, making its predecessor look extremely bloated. It also has a sharper and more defined rear-end.
The inside also got a nip-tuck treatment. Sculpted surfaces and shapes all run throughout the cabin, creating a more tight-knit, collected feel. The new MyLink infotainment screen sits proudly at the top of the center stack, and offers a touchscreen experience that’s better than the previous models, with more user-intuitive functionality and features.
In 2014, safety was again updated. Now, forward collision-alert and lane-departure warning systems are found on the LTZ trim. Forward collision-alert uses sensors to detect any vehicles or objects in front of the Traverse, and provides an audible alert, allowing you to take evasive maneuvers if required. The lane-departure warning system works in a similar manner as forward collision alert, and provides you an audible warning if you are unintentionally leaving your lane. It senses this by detecting if you signaled to leave your lane or not.
Performance, cargo capacity, passenger space and the technology all remain the same. With the balanced performance and large interior representing the Traverse’s strong suit.
Models equipped with the MyLink infotainment system get Siri Eyes Free voice control technology.
This is a feature that’s meant to work with the in-dash audio command center. In this case, the MyLink touchscreen. For iOS users, they can hook their phones up via Bluetooth connectivity and use voice commands to do things like receive or make calls, play music, send and receive texts audibly, access maps, set reminders and a whole lot more.
Along with having the Siri Eyes Free technology, the rear seat entertainment system proves a real winner with backseat passengers.
The Chevy Traverse is currently in the early years of its second generation. So if you're shopping for a used Chevy Traverse, you not only will find it is, at the very oldest, a 2018 model, but there's a good chance the vehicle will be a Certified Pre-Owned Chevy.
For a Chevy to be considered for certification, it needs to be within six model years of the current release, have no more than 75,000 miles, have a clean title, pass a vehicle history report, and pass a 172-point inspection. A Certified Pre-Owned Chevy comes with several added benefits over buying a standard, used vehicle. This includes a 6-year/100,000 mile powertrain limited warranty, a 12-month/12,000 mile bumper-to-bumper limited warranty, plus a host of other benefits. This helps make buying a used second-generation Chevy Traverse a potentially valuable investment on your part.
General Motors officially announced the all-new second-generation Chevy Traverse during the 2017 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. It went on sale several months later in July. With the update, the Traverse moved away from the rounded shape of the first generation and took on a squared nose face more in line with other Chevy SUVs, such as the Tahoe (while also taking some design pointers from the company's midsize SUV, the Acadia).
Built up north in Lansing, Michigan, 2018 models of the Chevy Traverse models come with two engine options. The first is a 3.6L V6, and the second is a 2.0L Turbo I4 engine. Both of these engines use a 9-speed automatic transmission.
With the release, Chevy chipped away 111 pounds off the previous generation's weight, all while maintaining the 8-seat design. However, as General Motors was set on releasing the return of the Chevy Blazer, it pegged the Traverse as a midsize crossover SUV, when during the first generation it had identified as a full-size SUV.
The second-generation Chevy Traverse has five different trims available. The entry-level trim is the L, followed by the LS, LT, Premier, and, as is the case with most Chevy vehicles, the High Country is the top-tier trim. With the update, all trims can be purchased as either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, except for the base L trim (only available in FWD), and the High Country (only available in AWD).
As noted, the L is the base trim and comes standard with a 3.6L V6. It also uses a 7-inch touchscreen Chevrolet MyLink infotainment system that runs both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The LS trim offers all of the same standard features while adding on a tinted glass design, as well as the option to include AWD. There are two LT trim packages. One is the LT Cloth, and the other is the LT leather. Both of these options feature 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, although the Leather trim adds leather seating and upgrades the sound system to a Bose premium audio sound system.
The Premier trim builds on the LT Leather and adds LED projector-beam headlamps, a dual-outlet exhaust, some added leather features, and heated front seats, plus wireless charging for mobile devices. Lastly, the High Country only comes in all-wheel drive, features a tow package, several safety upgrades, a power-folding third-row seat, and IntelliBeam auto front high beam assist headlights.
With the 2018 release of the second-generation Chevy Traverse, there were also two appearance trims available. The first is the RS, which built on the LT Leather trim but added several black bowtie designs, a new fog lamp bezel, larger 20-inch aluminum wheels, black roof rails, and window trims, it also replaced the 3.6L V6 with the turbo I4. The Redline Edition was also available for the Premier trim and offered several additional color options, a dual SkyCape panoramic moonroof, black mirror caps and door handles, 20-inch black gloss wheels with red stripes, plus several other decorative enhancements.
As 2018 marked the release of the all-new second-generation Chevy Traverse, the 2019 release came with very little in the way of changes or upgrades. The body essentially is the same, and all the trims are available as well. Chevy did take the Havana Brown Metallic paint color off the market and replaced it with a slightly different Saddle Brown Metallic. Chevy also provided an additional color package for the LS through Premier trims called the Blackout. This package blacked out every color, including the rims, and added new black elements within the vehicle. The 2019 model year also marked the final year Chevy would offer the 2.0L engine.
The 2.0L Turbo I4 engine would be discontinued about halfway through the 2019 model year, so you will most likely find a 3.6L V6 engine on a used 2019 Chevy Traverse. If you manage to find a Traverse with the 2.0L engine, it will get about 255 horsepower and up to 295 lb-ft of torque. The 3.6L V6 gets about 310 horsepower and 266 lb-ft of torque in all second-generation models through 2020.
Much like the 2019 release, there isn't much in the way of new features found on the 2020 Chevy Traverse. As it is the current model, you also will likely not find many used options, at least until the 2021 rolls off the assembly line, which should happen mid-way through 2020. There will likely be some additional tweaks on the 2021 model as it will mark the fourth year of the current generation, which typically comes with some facelifts and a slight refresh.
As for the 2020 year, though, you will no longer find the I4 turbo engine on any model. So if you have your heart set on this particular engine, you will need to either opt for the 2018 or find a 2019 with it. For the 2020 year, most of the changes are found in the interior of the SUV, including the removal of Chevy's old MyLink system. In its place, Chevy is bringing in the Infotainment 3 system. There is also a brand new teen driving system that comes standard on all trim packages. One of the features found on this particular system includes a buckle-to-drive feature. This means when the teen driver system is activated the vehicle will not start without the seats buckled.
2020 models have the ability to tow up to 5,000 lbs when properly equipped. Not bad at all for an SUV with only a 3.6L V6 engine. You'll also find available safety features like forward collision alert, front pedestrian braking, automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist with lane departure warning, and rear cross traffic alert. All of these features work to keep you safe and on the road.
As for fuel efficiency? This model offers a generous 18 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway. Excellent for an SUV that can tow 5,000 lbs and carry eight passengers. One of the highlights of this model is a maximum cargo capacity of 98.2 cu.ft. with all the rear seats folded down. If you need your second-row of seats, you can get up to 57.8 cu.ft of cargo space, and with all seats up, you'll still have 23 cu.ft. to make use of.
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