$13,197 - $20,046

2013 Chevrolet Traverse Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2013 Chevrolet Traverse was new.


Performance: 7.9

Reviewers say the 2013 Chevrolet Traverse has a comfortable ride, car-like handling and strong brakes, which make it a solid crossover. While it isn’t the most powerful in its class, the Traverse offers good fuel economy and has respectable tow ratings.

  • "The 2013 Chevrolet Traverse clearly is a comfortable city cruiser." -- Road and Track
  • "The other traditional Lambda strengths of good road noise insulation, a smooth ride, and generous three-row room carry over." -- Truck Trend
  • "Steering is par for the course in the class; the ride is nicely damped and visibility is acceptable." -- AutoWeek
  • "Of all the big CUVs we've tested, this is one of our favorites. The Traverse drives like a much smaller vehicle and exhibits impressive stability, a smooth and comfortable ride, and remarkably quick reflexes." -- Kelley Blue Book (2012)

Acceleration and Power

The 2013 Chevy Traverse has a 3.6-liter V6 engine in all trims. The engine makes 281 horsepower on the LS and LT models, while a dual exhaust system on the LTZ trim helps boost horsepower to 288. The engine is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. All trims can be equipped with all-wheel drive. The Traverse gets an EPA-rated 17/24 mpg city/highway with front-wheel drive, which is competitive for the class. The Traverse can tow up to 5,200 pounds.

Reviewers say the Traverse’s V6 engine is adequate for daily driving, but struggles on hills and in passing maneuvers on the highway. One test driver thinks the V6 in the Traverse would be better served in a lighter vehicle. Most critics note that the transmission shifts fairly smoothly.

  • "Because the Traverse weighs nearly two and a half tons, it never threatens to lift off the pavement and take flight, but on the other hand it has adequate power and reasonable throttle response." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "GM's 3.6L V6 is a fine engine, but given its high-winding nature, it's more at home in a lightweight like the Cadillac ATS." -- AutoWeek
  • "Despite its 281 hp, the V-6 still has to do a good amount of work to get the Traverse's 2.5 tons moving. Strained isn't exactly the right word, as it gets up to speed quickly enough, but it relies on revs more than you might expect for a vehicle of this class." -- Truck Trend
  • "The Traverse's drivetrain shines even among large crossovers, which aren't slowpokes these days. Its standard six-speed automatic shifts quickly, if sometimes roughly, and highway kickdown happens with little delay." -- Cars.com (2012)

Handling and Braking

Reviewers say that the 2013 Chevrolet Traverse is surprisingly nimble for a heavy SUV, but is far from sporty. The Traverse’s size shows when maneuvering in tight spaces. Overall though, critics think the Traverse is easy to drive because of its comfortable ride, responsive steering and strong brakes.

  • "It proved surprisingly nimble with a load of four passengers and luggage on the back roads outside San Francisco on which we drove it, handling the turns without undue drama." -- Truck Trend
  • "Driving the Traverse on a tight winding road reminds you that this is a vehicle that weighs nearly two tons, and mass is a difficult to hide. On the flip side though, driving the Traverse in the city reminds you of what a comfortable ride it provides for the everyday commute, and this has even been improved upon for 2013." -- Road and Track
  • "From the comfortable driver's seat, it's no more difficult to place the Traverse in its lane or point it into a turn than it is to drop an envelope into a mail slot." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "Traverse is a large vehicle, but it's reasonably agile with little lean in corners. Accurate steering and responsive brakes contribute to making Traverse easy to maneuver despite its size." -- Consumer Guide (2012)

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