$11,154 - $13,871

2015 Chevrolet Trax Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2015 Chevrolet Trax was new.


Performance: 7.1

Reviewers agree that the all-new 2015 Chevrolet Trax’s sharp handling and easy maneuverability make it a great SUV for city driving. However, they say it can be slow from a stop, and its engine is noisy. Test drivers also report that the transmission is slow to shift. The Trax earns some of the best fuel economy estimates in the class.

  • "Considered on its own merits, though, the Trax drives pretty well, with sharp steering and an agile feel that should endear it to most drivers." -- AutoTrader
  • "The smoothness of this powerplant begins to wane just before 5000 rpm, at which point the noise and the character turn unpleasant and stay that way to the 6500-rpm redline. However, this engine-also shared with the lighter Sonic sedan and hatchback-is reasonably responsive, and its turbocharger operates with little lag. Unfortunately, it provides less punch than you might hope for, and the 0-to-60 estimate of 9.2 seconds-for the quickest and lightest front-wheel-drive configuration-is pretty poky." -- Car and Driver
  • "Extremely maneuverable in almost every situation, the Trax proved itself quite capable while attacking the urban jungle." -- Left Lane News
  • The Trax may be sportier than the similar Buick Encore but not quite at the level of competitors like the Fiat 500L, Nissan Juke or Mini Cooper Countryman." -- AutoWeek

Acceleration and Power

The 2015 Chevrolet Trax has a turbocharged 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 138 horsepower. A six-speed automatic transmission is standard. With front-wheel drive, the Trax earns an EPA-estimated 26/34 mpg city/highway, which are some of the best numbers in the class.

According to most test drivers, the Chevrolet Trax’s engine delivers modest power and adequate acceleration. Some say the Trax can be slow off the line. Auto writers complain that the engine is noisy and the six-speed automatic transmission can be reluctant to shift.

  • "The only available transmission is the six-speed 6T40 Hydra-Matic, which can take its sweet time to downshift." -- Car and Driver
  • "While this combination offers adequate acceleration, it suffers the usual ‘turbo lag’ both from a stop and when stabbing the throttle at speed; in both cases, it takes a beat before power comes on strongly." -- Consumer Guide
  • The mandatory 6-speed automatic transmission isn't always perfectly smooth or swift, but it calls up adequately sprightly acceleration on demand, with the turbo's low-end punch providing an advantage over naturally aspirated alternatives." -- AutoTrader
  • "The 138 hp from the 1.4-liter turbocharged inline-four never gave any indication that it needed to work hard, and the six-speed automatic felt nicely geared. On paper, the weight and power characteristics might suggest the Trax would always be a step behind everything else on the road, but this never materialized and the trucklet more than held its own. Driven within reason, its power should prove adequate." -- AutoWeek
  • We found the Trax to be an eager performer, offering decent acceleration but with a fair amount of protest from underhood while exercising the skinny pedal on an uphill grade. Otherwise, it quieted down after reaching touring speed." -- Left Lane News

Handling and Braking 

Reviewers praise the all-new 2015 Chevrolet Trax for its nimble handling through turns and say its tight turning radius makes it easy to maneuver in small spaces. They also agree that the Trax does a good job of smoothing out road imperfections. Front-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is available.

  • "The Trax we drove felt ready for emergency maneuvers, and it never felt like it was close to getting out of control even when making some rather tight turns on wet roads." -- AutoWeek
  • "As you might expect for a general-purpose vehicle, the Trax understeers solidly. Its light-effort, rack-mounted electric power steering, however, provides ample feedback, and this little crossover SUV remains composed even on bumpy roads." -- Car and Driver
  • "The small size of the Trax pays off when driving in the city. It's easier to park and maneuver in tight spaces, benefiting not only from its size, but from excellent forward visibility, light low-speed steering and a tight turning circle (36.7 feet versus the Equinox's 40.2)." -- Edmunds
  • "When the road did smooth out, the Trax shined bright as it rode each curve effortlessly. Handling the Trax was a breeze and parking the small SUV during a few different occasions was very easy as well." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The ride is supple enough, even with the optional 18-inch wheels, and the cabin stays respectably quiet except for some booming engine noise north of 4,000 rpm." -- AutoTrader

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