While compact SUVs are ultimately more popular, three-row crossovers are still big business for automakers. They're especially important for domestic manufacturers putting all their eggs into the SUV business. That's why the 2018 debut of the second-generation Chevrolet Traverse felt like such a missed opportunity. While there wasn't anything offensively bad about it, there also wasn't anything unique. Now, midway through its life cycle, the refreshed 2021 Chevrolet Traverse looks to flip the script with a handful of updates to keep it competitive.
2021 Chevrolet Traverse
2021 Chevrolet TraverseEstimated Price: Starting at $31,000
- Refreshed front fascia and redesigned headlights and taillights
- New infotainment system with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
- Some previously optional driving aids are now standard
- Part of the second Traverse generation introduced for 2018
As Chevrolet winds down its car offerings, SUVs are more important to the brand's bottom line than ever. When it debuted in 2018, this Traverse generation failed to impress, and a handful of more competitive vehicles have entered the fray since. The Traverse needs these newly announced upgrades to keep a foot in the fight, but they might not be significant enough in the end.
The Kia Telluride and Hyundai Palisade twins are the newest kids on the block, and they offer more room than almost any other midsize three-row crossover. The Volkswagen Atlas gets a mild refresh of its own for 2021, and we think this passenger- and cargo-friendly SUV is ideal if you need space for a full house of adults. Don't count out the recently redesigned Toyota Highlander, which is the best-selling vehicle in the class. And despite a rough launch, the new-for-2020 Ford Explorer remains the Traverse's toughest domestic rival.
The refreshed 2021 Chevrolet Traverse looks more dynamic than its predecessor and makes its driving aids more accessible. The upgrades might be enough to move it up a notch or two in our rankings of midsize three-row SUVs.