The Chevrolet Traverse dukes it out with a slew of competing three-row crossovers from just about every mainstream brand in North America. Having racked up more than 1.1 million sales during the 2019 calendar year, it’s a wildly popular segment in the United States, and it’s still growing.
The Traverse is built on the extended-wheelbase version of the GM C1 platform which it shares most directly with the Buick Enclave. Other General Motors models that ride on the same platform include the Chevrolet Blazer, GMC Acadia, and Cadillac XT6. The Chevy faces no less than ten rivals in its competitive set, and it’s ready to haul families and all their gear, thanks to being larger than most of its rivals. Just how big and spacious is it compared to its adversaries? Let’s crunch some numbers and find out.
The 2020 Chevrolet Traverse rides on a 120.9-inch wheelbase, which is the longest in its segment as we can see in the chart below. The Chevy also boasts an overall length of 204.3 inches, a width of 78.6 inches and a 70.7-inch roof height.
These dimensions make the Traverse the longest overall, in addition to being one of the widest and tallest. Its closest rival in sheer girth is the Dodge Durango. It’s even slightly longer than the full-size, body-on-frame 2020 Chevrolet Tahoe SUV, although the latter is roughly two inches wider and as taller (and the all-new 2021 Tahoe grows compared to the outgoing model, but that’s a tale for another time).
|Model||Wheelbase (in.)||Length (in.)||Width (in.)||Height (in.)||Front Track (in.)||Rear Track (in.)|
- *with roof rails
The Traverse’s exterior dimensions pay off when it comes to passenger space, with generous amounts of head room, leg room and shoulder room.
In its segment, the 2020 Chevrolet Traverse ranks above-average in just about every dimension, and is the most accommodating for third-row occupants. However, the Nissan Pathfinder’s low seat cushions give it more 1st– and 2nd-row headroom, while the Hyundai Palisade and Kia Telluride corporate cousins are almost as spacious inside.
Meanwhile, the sporty Mazda CX-9 and the redesigned Toyota Highlander are the smallest in the segment, with the least spacious third-row seating areas overall.
|Model||Head Room (1st/2nd/3rd Row) (in.)||Leg Room (1st/2nd/3rd Row) (in.)||Shoulder Room (1st/2nd/3rd Row) (in.)||Hip Room (1st/2nd/3rd Row) (in.)|
|Chevrolet Traverse||41.3 / 40 / 38.2||41 / 38.4 / 33.5||62.1 / 62.2 / 57.5||58.1 / 56.9 / 48.5|
|Dodge Durango||39.9 / 39.8 / 37.8||40.3 / 38.6 / 33.5||58.5 / 57.7 / 50.4||57 / 55.5 / 42.4|
|Ford Explorer||40.7 / 40.5 / 38.9||43 / 39 / 32.2||61.8 / 61.9 / 54.6||59.2 / 59.1 / 40.9|
|Honda Pilot||40.1 / 40.2 / 38.9||40.9 / 38.4 / 31.9||62 / 62 / 57.6||59.1 / 57.3 / 44.6|
|Hyundai Palisade||40.7 / 40.1 / 37.8||44.1 / 42.4 / 31.4||61.2 / 60.8 / 55.2||58.1 / 57.7 / 43.7|
|Kia Telluride||40.9 / 40.2 / 38.1||41.4 / 42.4 / 31.4||61.6 / 61.2 / 55.3||58.9 / 58 / 43.7|
|Mazda CX-9||39.3 / 38.5 / 35.4||41 / 39.4 / 29.7||57.9 / 58.1 / 53.1||56.7 / 57.4 / 40.1|
|Nissan Pathfinder||42.2 / 39.4 / 37.8||42.2 / 41.7 / 30.7||60.9 / 60.4 / 57.1||56.8 / 56 / 42|
|Subaru Ascent||41.3 / 40 / 36.3||42.2 / 38.6 / 31.7||61.1 / 60.3 / 57.2||57.7 / 57.5 / 45.9|
|Toyota Highlander||39.9 / 39.4 / 36.1||40.4 /41 / 27.7||59 / 58.7 / 55||57.2 / 57 / 45.6|
|Volkswagen Atlas||41.3 / 40.4 / 38.3||41.5 / 37.6 / 33.7||61.5 / 60.8 / 54.9||58.2 / 58 / 45.1|
If there’s one area in which the 2020 Chevrolet Traverse completely dominates its adversaries, it’s cargo space.
- Behind third row: the Chevy’s 23 cubic-foot cargo rating behind the third row is class-leading, and only the Telluride and Atlas come close with 21 and 20.6 cubic feet, respectively.
- Behind second row (third row folded): the Traverse also has the most cargo room when the third row is folded, at 57.8 cubic feet. It’s followed by the Atlas at 55.5. Every other rival falls below the 50 cubic-foot threshold.
- Behind first row (second and third row folded): with all rear seats folded, the Chevy boasts a cargo volume of 98.2 cubic feet, with the Atlas coming close at 96.8, thanks to its square body and overall width. All other rivals offer a maximum volume of less than 90 cubic feet, with the CX-9 being the smallest by a significant margin.
|Model||Behind 3rd Row (cu.-ft.)||Behind 2nd Row (cu.-ft.)||Behind 1st Row (cu.-ft.)|
One note on measurements: manufacturers usually follow the SAE’s J1100 measurement standard to define cargo volume, but that standard was established back in 1973, and has been revised eight times, with the last one dating back to 2009. Some automakers use the latest standard, others use the 2005 one, and so forth.
As a result, there are inconsistencies. For example, the Honda Pilot has a maximum cargo capacity of 83.9 cubic feet, but up to 109.2 cubic feet via “floor space between seating rows and seats in their forward-most and upright position,” according to the Japanese brand. Clearly, that floor space isn’t usable cargo space. Ultimately, the bottom line is that the Traverse has the biggest usable cargo area.