• Feb 6th 2008 at 11:33AM
  • 33
click above for more high-res live shots of the 2009 Chevy Traverse

As was previously mentioned, Autoblog is here at the 2008 Chicago Auto Show, doing our best to bring you up to speed on all the latest live reveals. We made it down to the GM booth early in the morning for the official debut of the 2009 Chevrolet Traverse, and it was pretty much exactly as we expected: another Lambda crossover, platform mate to the GMC Acadia, Saturn Outlook and Buick Enclave. Looks-wise, the Chevy Traverse is not the least attractive Lambda (looking at you, Outlook), but the Acadia and Enclave have it beat. Though Chevy claims that it used styling cues from the Malibu midsize sedan in the Traverse's design, we don't think they work as well on a CUV of this size. Especially note the grille, which apes the current Chevy design language to a tee. As Alex mentioned, the headlights look a little mean in pictures, but less so in real life. We like the upswept rear quarters, which remind us of the Enclave - by far the best looking Lambda. Other than that, everything remains status quo, with the 3.6 liter V6 engine, 6-speed automatic transmission, your choice of front-wheel or all-wheel-drive and seating for either seven or eight.

The presentation that GM put on for the Traverse was much less agreeable than the actual vehicle. Involving a family of two parents and their four children (all actors, for sure) reciting a contrived script, it reminded us of a high school play, though thankfully was much shorter.


Chevrolet Announces the All-New 2009 Traverse

New Crossover Features Bold Styling, Sophisticated Details and
Best-in-Class Fuel Economy from a Direct-Injected 3.6L V-6

CHICAGO – Introduced at the Chicago Auto Show, the 2009 Chevrolet Traverse is an expressively styled, well-equipped crossover that gives customers people-hauling and cargo-carrying capability typically found in larger SUVs.

With styling cues inspired by the acclaimed '08 Chevy Malibu, the Traverse delivers refined details with strong proportions and the bold front-end appearance found on all new Chevrolets. Traverse will start production in the third quarter of 2008 at GM's Spring Hill, Tenn. manufacturing facility.

"We think the Traverse is the right vehicle at the right time," said Ed Peper, Chevrolet general manager. "It has great looks, utility and safety, with a driving experience typically found in smaller vehicles. But it delivers this with three rows of seating – including a third row that fits adults – and class-leading cargo space. The Traverse is following the formula that is bringing Chevy back to a new generation of consumers – great styling, loads of class-leading features and tremendous value."

The '09 Traverse is offered in LS, LT and LTZ models, in both front-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive configurations. Product highlights include:

* Distinctive design that highlights the new face of Chevrolet
* Optimized aerodynamics that enhance fuel economy and reduce wind noise
* Four-wheel independent suspension system
* StabiliTrak electronic stability control system
* Family of 17-, 18- and 20-inch wheels
* Second-row Smart Slide seat feature, for easy access to the third-row seats
* Rear-seat entertainment system with second-row controls
* Six standard air bags, including side curtain air bags that deploy over all three seating rows
* OnStar with Turn by Turn Navigation and Direction Download (with navigation system)
* XM Satellite Radio with XM NavTraffic, a real-time traffic feature (with navigation system)
* Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity
* Cruising range of more than 500 miles (800 km)
* Exceptional attention to detail and strong build quality

Sleek, sophisticated design

The Traverse casts a unique profile with a sleek, smooth and flowing design that characterizes the new, global face of Chevrolet. Elements such as chrome-ringed grille inserts, available projector-beam headlamps and large wheel-and-tire combinations highlight the vehicle's finely honed attention to detail.

Taut body lines and minimal overhangs convey the image of a smaller vehicle, reinforcing the Traverse's feeling of a large vehicle that drives smaller, while tight tolerances between body components – enhanced by the vehicle's unitized body structure, which enables wraparound, single-piece fascias – emphasize a highly precise build quality.

"The Traverse delivers a design that is unexpected from Chevrolet," said Michael Burton, director of design for the exterior. "Many of the details are typical on higher-priced vehicles, but the Traverse brings them to a level that is accessible to more customers."

Some of the upscale design details include:

* Deep-set grille inserts with chrome-ringed trim
* Turn signals integrated in the outside mirrors
* Expressive taillamps
* Rear spoiler integrated over the tailgate window
* Roof rails designed to enhance the sleek appearance when a roof rack is not in place
* 20-inch Ultra-Bright aluminum wheels (standard on LTZ models)
* Dual, bright exhaust outlets
* Panoramic, power-operated sunroof

"The headlamps, for example, are more than merely projector beam units; they are integrated in stylized housings that are rich and detailed, reinforcing the high-tech features found throughout the Traverse," said Burton.

Like the exterior, the Traverse's interior is a confluence of refined styling, technology and attention to detail. The instrument panel has a dual-cockpit design that is a hallmark of Chevrolet's heritage; it flows into the door panels, creating a sleek, highly detailed appearance. The instrument panel is mounted in a "low and away" position that enhances outward visibility.

The instrument panel houses a pair of large gauge binnacles that are accented with bright trim rings; and for so-equipped vehicles, the available navigation system screen is integrated prominently at the upper-center of the instrument panel.

The Traverse's interior can be configured for seven or eight adults, including two front bucket seats, a 60/40-split second-row bench (three passengers) or two second-row captain's chairs (two passengers) and a 60/40-split third-row bench seat. Perforated leather seats and second-row captain's chairs are available. The third-row seat is capable of comfortably seating adults while simultaneously providing best-in-class storage space behind it.

Great amenities

Complementing the Traverse's exterior and interior designs is a comprehensive roster of standard and available amenities that enhances the driving experience for the driver and passengers alike. They include:

* Rear ultrasonic parking assist
* Rear-view camera
* Outside mirrors with spotter mirrors
* Power liftgate
* Extended-range remote vehicle start
* Heated windshield fluid
* DVD entertainment system
* DVD navigation system (with OnStar Destination Download and XM traffic routing)
* Heated and cooled front seats
* XM Satellite Radio with XM NavTraffic, a real-time traffic feature
* Heated, power-adjustable outside mirrors with blind-spot mirrors
* Power folding outside mirrors with integrated turn signals
* OnStar (with one year of Directions & Connections service) with Turn by Turn Navigation and, with the navigation system, Direction Download.

GM's Five-Year/100,000 Mile Powertrain Limited Warranty continues to make GM a better choice for customers. GM's coverage focuses on the complete ownership experience and includes other provisions that competitors do not offer, including transferability to the next owner, more complete coverage of parts, and coverage for new and certified used vehicles. In addition, GM offers complementary programs such as courtesy transportation and roadside assistance.

I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.

    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      This will steal mostly from the Outlook. They will probably sell for around the same priced and are both equally the uglier Lambdas. Though this kind of looks more attractive than the Outlook.
      • 7 Years Ago
      If you read the comments you can see why GM produces multiple vehicles off the same chassis. Appearance is near the top of everyone's shopping list. Some like the Acadia, some the Traverse and others the Enclave. People who knock GM for doing it have never tried to sell a $30,000 appliance to a picky American consumer!
      • 7 Years Ago
      the crossover market is growing by leaps and bounds. chevy needs one of these types of quality vehicles in their portfolio, unless you're towing a boat, a family doesnt need a Tahoe or Yukon. and the mini-van is dead.

      these GM crossovers are just right!
      • 7 Years Ago
      Yeah it is really going to hurt the Outlook. I like the looks better and it is going to be a couple of grand cheaper. Saturn is going to have to lower the price to match this one. I like the look of all three, but I think Autoblog has this one right.

      I agree that the real life pictures make it look a ton better.
      • 7 Years Ago
      This thing is going to sell like crazy. It is very sharp with nice lines and design cues that are carried forward from the Malibu inside and out. Great job GM!
      • 7 Years Ago
      No, don't fix the axle ratios first. (3.39 & 3.16)
      and what is with the really low output direct injected engine.
      281hp@6400, 253ft-lbs@5500 (single outlet)
      286hp@6400, 255ft-lbs@5500 (dual outlet)
      vs. current
      270hp@6600, 248ft-lbs@3200 (single outlet)
      275ph@6600, 251ft-lbs@3200 (dual outlet)
      • 7 Years Ago
      IMHO the Outlook is the best looking of the bunch overall, other than the Enclave. I really like how the Acadia looks (we're actually considering getting one), but the tail lights are heinous. The Traverse looks good from the front, but the tail end is easily the ugliest of the bunch! I'm also not a fan of the tunnels around the gauges in the dash. They did give the instrumentation in the Traverse the best coloring of the bunch though.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Nope different platform. The BRX is europe. This thinks is like twice the size. The new SAAB 9-4 and Caddy will be on the Theta platform not the Lambda.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Sweet ride. If Chevy can sell these at similar price/trim levels as the new Malibu then they'll never be able to keep up with demand.
      • 7 Years Ago
      All Lambdas are looking good so far. Chevy Already has the Traverse on it's website. Traverse Looks MUCH Better with these live pics.
      • 7 Years Ago
      not bad is all i can say. very bland and the interior design ergonomics doesn't make sense like the location of the cupholders.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I'm guessing that Chevy is the first to get the DI engine but the higher horsepower 300+ DI will be reserved for the Acadia Denali and Enclave Super since the V8 program for Lambda is dead.
    • Load More Comments