Chevrolet launched a new crossover at the 2008 Chicago Auto Show. The company capitalizes on its success with the new Malibu by offering similar design cues on the 2009 Traverse. Chevrolet claims high build quality, with good fit and finish, showing that it can build cars competitive with the imports.
Chevrolet rolled out the Traverse at its press conference on February 6, 2008. A little large for a crossover, the Traverse is powered by a 3.6-liter V-6 engine. Chevrolet claims a range of more than 500 miles, achieved by having a 22-gallon gas tank.
As part of its attempt to compete better with imports, Chevrolet went for high interior quality in the Traverse. This picture shows nicely stitched leather seats, although the console looks similar to what we've seen on other GM cars. The big shifter controls a six-speed automatic. You can also see a tweeter mounted to the A-pillar.
Buttons on the right side of the steering wheel show audio controls and a phone button. The Traverse gets Bluetooth cell phone integration, the first indication that GM is adopting the technology on a wide scale. In the past, GM cars relied on OnStar for hands-free calling.
We've seen this navigation and stereo interface on previous GM cars, and we like the tabbed screen design. As a new feature for Chevrolet, this system features live traffic through XM satellite radio. The press release also mentions OnStar turn-by-turn directions, which seems superfluous when you have a navigation system.