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MSRP: $21,300 - 29,100

6.8

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 5.9
Performance: 5.9
Interior: 6.5
Safety:
This rating isn’t available yet for the current model year. In the meantime, last year’s rating of 8.8 for safety is being used to calculate this vehicle’s overall score.
TBD
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2020 Chevrolet Trax Review

The 2020 Chevrolet Trax has a weak engine, a harsh ride, and an unremarkable interior. For these reasons, it ranks poorly among subcompact SUVs.

Pros & Cons

  • Easy maneuverability
  • User-friendly infotainment system is standard
  • Interior quality is a mixed bag
  • Lackluster engine
  • Stiff ride

Is the Chevrolet Trax a Good Car?

The Chevy Trax is not a very good subcompact SUV. It has underwhelming engine power, dull handling, and an uncomfortable ride. Interior quality is nothing to write home about either, and seat comfort, cargo space, and fuel economy are merely adequate.

The pint-size Trax does, however, dole out easy driving maneuverability, and it features modern, intuitive infotainment technologies.

Should I Buy the Chevrolet Trax?

With its small size, tight turning radius, and muted acceleration, the Trax is best for those who don't need a lot of space and do most of their driving in the city. This Chevy has a good number of standard features and a starting price that is about average for the class, but there's little reason to buy the Trax over any number of class competitors.

The Honda HR-V, for example, has ample passenger and cargo room, along with a long list of optional active safety features. The Mazda CX-3 boasts athletic driving dynamics and a high-end interior.

Compare the Trax, HR-V, and CX-3 »

Should I Buy a New or Used Chevrolet Trax?

The Chevrolet Trax debuted for the 2015 model year, and it has seen few major changes since. That means a used Trax will be similar to a new Trax but will likely cost much less. If you decide to go used, look for a 2017 model. That's when Chevy added Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to the standard features list and refreshed the interior and exterior styling.

For 2020, Chevy updated the infotainment system and retired the Midnight Edition from the Trax lineup. Aside from some trim and features shuffling, there have been no other notable changes.

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2017 Trax, 2018 Trax, and 2019 Trax reviews to help make your decision. Also, check out our Used Car Deals page to learn about savings and discounts on used cars.

Compare the 2018, 2019, and 2020 Trax »

We Did the Research for You: 41 Reviews Analyzed

We analyzed 41 Chevrolet Trax reviews – along with reliability ratings, fuel economy estimates, and more – to help you decide if the 2020 Trax is the right new car for you. This 2020 Chevrolet Trax review incorporates applicable research for all models in this generation, which spans the 2015 through 2020 model years.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our team has more than 75 years of combined automotive industry experience. To remain objective, we don't accept expensive gifts or trips from car companies, and an outside team manages the advertising on our site.

How Much Does the Chevrolet Trax Cost?

The 2020 Chevrolet Trax starts at $21,300. The midlevel LT trim starts at $23,200, and the top-of-the-line Premier trim costs $27,600. All models feature a turbocharged four-cylinder engine and a six-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is a $1,500 upgrade in any trim.

The Trax's base price is about average for a subcompact SUV, but it's a little more expensive than some primary rivals. The Mazda CX-3 starts at $20,390, and the Honda HR-V starts at $20,620. The Toyota C-HR retails for $21,145.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great deals at your local Chevrolet dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Chevrolet deals page.

Chevrolet Trax Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Chevrolet Trax or Honda HR-V?

The Honda HR-V is one of the roomiest subcompact SUVs. It has an adult-friendly back seat and one of the largest cargo holds in the class, besting the Trax in both of those areas. The HR-V also has a slightly more upscale cabin and more engaging handling than the Trax. Both SUVs have weak engines, but the HR-V has superior fuel economy. While every Trax comes with an infotainment system and smartphone integration, you'll have to upgrade from the base model to get those features in the HR-V. Still, the Honda is the better buy.

Which Is Better: Chevrolet Trax or Mazda CX-3?

Thanks to its sharp and agile handling, the Mazda CX-3 is unmatched in its class when it comes to driving fun. The CX-3 also has impressive engine power and great fuel economy, in contrast to the Trax's weak acceleration and mediocre EPA estimates. Both the CX-3 and the Trax come standard with an infotainment system, but Chevy's is a little more user-friendly. You'll get a nicer interior and a few more standard driver assistance features with the Mazda though. Where the CX-3 suffers is in practicality – its second row is cramped, and it has one of the smallest cargo areas in the class.

Which Is Better: Chevrolet Trax or Toyota C-HR?

Like the Trax, the Toyota C-HR places near the bottom of our subcompact SUV rankings. Still, this Toyota offers a few clear advantages over the Trax, including a better predicted reliability rating and a longer list of standard driver assistance features. If those are important to you, the C-HR is the better choice. The Trax, on the other hand, has a roomier back seat and more maximum cargo space. Neither crossover is particularly engaging to drive, and they both have a so-so interior quality.

Compare the Trax, HR-V, and CX-3 »

Trax Interior

How Many People Does the Trax Seat?

The Chevrolet Trax seats five people. The front seats are slightly constricted because of the narrow cabin, though there's sufficient rear-seat space, even for adult passengers. All the seats are generally comfortable, but you might find the cushions a little hard. Bolstering and support could also be better.

Like many entry-level cars and SUVs, there aren't a lot of fancy seating amenities or upgrades. Standard fare consists of cloth upholstery, a four-way manually adjustable driver's seat, and a two-way manually adjustable passenger seat. You can spring for deluxe cloth upholstery, a combination of cloth and synthetic leather upholstery, full synthetic leather, heated front seats, and a six-way power-adjustable driver's seat.

Trax and Child Car Seats

The Trax has two complete sets of LATCH car-seat connectors for the rear outboard seats and a tether anchor for the middle seat. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the system the second-highest rating of Acceptable for ease of use.

The lower anchors are set deeply in the seats, but there's enough room to maneuver and attach the car-seat straps with little effort. The tether anchors are easy to find, but you might confuse them for other hardware.

Trax Interior Quality

The Chevy Trax's interior is a mishmash of quality. There are some nice design touches, but overall it doesn't stand out from the rest of the class. You'll notice some obvious hard plastic surfaces and materials, and a fair amount of road and wind noise infiltrates the cabin.

Trax Cargo Space

You'll get 18.7 cubic feet of space behind the back seat of the Trax. The second row folds down almost completely flat to open up a maximum of 48.4 cubic feet.

The Trax's cargo volumes are slightly below average for the class, but they're a little better than what the Mazda CX-3 (12.4/44.5 cubic feet) and Toyota C-HR (19/36.4 cubic feet) offer. The Honda HR-V has one of the largest cargo holds in the segment, with up to 24.3 cubic feet of space behind the rear seat and a maximum of 58.8 cubic feet.

Trax Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

All Trax models come with the Chevrolet Infotainment 3 System, which is straightforward and easy to use. The 7-inch touch screen has clear graphics and an intuitive menu structure. It also includes standard Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone integration, along with a Wi-Fi hot spot.

Optional features include satellite radio, remote start, proximity keyless entry, a sunroof, and a seven-speaker Bose premium stereo.

Read more about interior »

Trax Performance

Trax Engine: Underpowered and Weak

The Chevy Trax makes 138 horsepower from a turbocharged four-cylinder engine. It has enough pep to scoot you around town at low speeds, but it feels underpowered on the highway. Acceleration is slow even when you hit the throttle hard, and the unrefined six-speed automatic transmission doesn't help matters. It can sometimes hesitate to shift, resulting in loud engine noise – and not the good kind.

Trax Gas Mileage: About Average

The 2020 Trax gets an EPA-estimated 26 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the highway. When equipped with all-wheel drive, this Chevy returns 24 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway.

Fuel economy is unremarkable for the class. Both the Honda HR-V and the Mazda CX-3 are among the segment leaders in this area. The HR-V gets up to 28 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway, while the CX-3 gets up to 29/34 mpg city/highway.

Trax Ride and Handling: Tightly Wound

The Trax requires little effort to steer, and a tight turning radius makes it highly maneuverable in close quarters. Aside from that, there's little steering feedback. This crossover also has a stiff ride that feels even harsher as you travel over bumpy or broken pavement.

Read more about performance »

Trax Reliability

Is the Chevrolet Trax Reliable?

The 2020 Chevrolet Trax has a predicted reliability rating of three out of five from J.D. Power. That rating is considered average for all new cars.

Chevrolet Trax Warranty

Chevrolet covers the Trax with a three-year/36,000-mile basic warranty and a five-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty.

Read more about reliability »

Trax Safety

Trax Crash Test Results

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 2020 Trax an overall crash test rating of five out of five stars. The Trax received five stars in the frontal and side crash tests and four stars in the rollover evaluation.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has not yet tested the 2020 Trax. The nearly identical 2019 Trax earned the highest rating of Good in five IIHS tests and the second-highest rating of Acceptable in the passenger-side small overlap front test. 2019 Trax models equipped with the optional front crash prevention system received the lowest rating of Basic for the effectiveness of those features.

Trax Safety Features

The Trax comes standard with a rearview camera. Optional driver assistance features include forward collision warning, lane departure warning, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and rear parking sensors.

Read more about safety »

Trax Dimensions and Weight

The Chevrolet Trax is 13.9 feet long. Its curb weight ranges from 3,124 to 3,344 pounds.

Where Is the 2020 Chevrolet Trax Built?

General Motors builds the Chevrolet Trax in Mexico, South Korea, and China.

Which Chevrolet Trax Model Is Right for Me?

The 2020 Chevrolet Trax is available in LS, LT, and Premier trim levels. All models come standard with a turbocharged four-cylinder engine and a six-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is optional. Chevrolet Trax AWD models cost an additional $1,500.

The base Trax LS features a nice list of standard equipment, including an infotainment system with Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, and a Wi-Fi hot spot. However, it's worth the extra $1,900 to jump up to the midrange LT. You'll get convenience features such as satellite radio, cruise control, and remote start, as well as access to optional packages that can add driver assistance features, a sunroof, a Bose stereo, proximity keyless entry, and a power-adjustable driver's seat.

The Trax Premier is basically a fully loaded model, and it features forward collision warning and lane departure warning, which aren't available in lower trims.

Chevrolet Trax LS

The 2020 Chevrolet Trax LS starts at $21,300. Standard features include cloth upholstery, a four-way manually adjustable driver's seat, power windows and locks, a two-way manually adjustable passenger seat, a 3.5-inch digital driver information display, and a rearview camera. The standard Chevrolet Infotainment 3 System comes with a 7-inch touch screen, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, Bluetooth, a Wi-Fi hot spot, a six-speaker stereo, and two USB ports.

Chevrolet Trax LT

The Chevrolet Trax LT retails for $23,200 and adds deluxe cloth upholstery, satellite radio, cruise control, remote start, a household-style power outlet, and heated outside mirrors.

The $450 Convenience package includes deluxe cloth and synthetic leather upholstery, a six-way power-adjustable driver's seat, proximity keyless entry, and push-button start. The Sun and Sound package costs $1,400 and comes with a sunroof and a seven-speaker Bose premium stereo. For $495, the Driver Confidence package adds rear parking sensors, blind spot monitoring, and rear cross traffic alert.

The Trax is also available in a Redline Edition for another $1,350. This appearance package adds black-painted wheels and various other black body accents.

Chevrolet Trax Premier

The Chevrolet Trax Premier costs $27,600. This model includes synthetic leather upholstery, a six-way power-adjustable driver's seat, heated front seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, proximity keyless entry, push-button start, a seven-speaker Bose premium stereo, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a sunroof, and fog lights. Also included are rear parking sensors, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, forward collision warning, and lane departure warning.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Chevrolet dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Chevrolet deals page.

See 2020 Chevrolet Trax specs and trims »

The Final Call

The 2020 Chevrolet Trax is easy to drive and boasts cool standard features, but that's true of many other rivals. No matter what you're looking for – lots of space, an upscale cabin, engaging handling – you'll probably find it in higher-ranked subcompact SUV.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "The Trax has a few redeeming qualities. It is easy to get into, generally affordable, and the tall ride height and large windows give drivers the expansive outward view preferred by SUV owners. Unfortunately, the benefits are vastly outweighed by its drawbacks. Passenger comfort is hampered by a harsh ride quality and narrow, unsupportive seats. The rear seat is a little claustrophobic, and there's less cargo room than in a Volkswagen Golf hatchback. … There are a number of desirable small crossovers, and we suggest driving any of them before settling on the Chevrolet Trax." -- Edmunds
  • "The Trax excels as an urban runabout. It has relatively generous interior space while still being small enough to make parking easy, a slightly raised driving position for good outward vision, offers advanced safety features, and comes with Apple CarPlay/Android Auto." -- Kelley Blue Book (2019)
  • "In creating its cute-ute, Chevy's strategy appears to have been to produce a mere placeholder beneath the Equinox using a model cheaply cobbled from the underwhelming, built-to-price Sonic. From that mediocre measure, the Trax is a success. The … Trax is a tiny, upright crossover that aims to attract the young and young at heart. And while it shares its basic bones with more refined Buick Encore, the plodding Trax is a disposable, forgettable appliance." -- Consumer Reports (2018)

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