By Peter Perrotta
As I navigate the 2020 Chevrolet Traverse High Country through the postcard-perfect side roads of the Pocono Mountains, I am reminded of Muhammad Ali’s famous quote.
“Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee. The hands can’t hit what the eyes can’t see.”
The muscular, but athletic high country SUV is quick and nimble. It glides up and down the hilly and windy terrain of the Poconos with ease. But, when it comes time to get serious, the 3.6 liter, V-6 engine provides more than enough power and strength to hurl this much-refined truck through the crisp fall air without hesitating one bit.
We were on a day trip to Hawk Mountain Sanctuary in Kempton, Pa., from our home in Maple Shade, N.J. After a full day of hiking the trails on the way to the top of the scenic peak, we decide to grab a bite to eat.
According to Google, the Deer Lake Pub and Restaurant is close by; so, we stop in. My mind remembers that Ali trained in Deer Lake for many years, running up and down these Pocono Hills on early morning training runs, preparing to meet the likes of Joe Frazier, Ken Norton, and George Foreman.
The waitress acknowledges that yes indeed this is the Deer Lake where Ali trained. In fact, she says, the training site still stands as a museum of sorts, just a few blocks away.
Like Ali passed many tests after training here, this 2020 Chevrolet Traverse High County passes the test as well. The V6 engine produces 310 horsepower and 266-pound feet of torque. When you couple that with a smooth-shifting nine-speed automatic transmission it makes for a near perfectly smooth ride.
Fuel economy on this traverse averages 21 miles per gallon, 18 mpg in city driving and 27 mpg on the highway.
The high county version of the traverse is it’s top-of-the-line in the model offerings for this mid-sized SUV. It comes with a ton of standard options but isn’t cheap.
The model I road tested for one week was the front-wheel drive (FWD) high country in Iridescent Pearl with a Jet Black/Loft Brown combination interior. The MSRP sticker price is $53,090.
Basically, if you opt to get this model, there are very few options you will have to consider because almost everything is standard on this vehicle. The only sticker item that was optioned on my tester was $995 for the iridescent pearl paint.
The standard technology features include: navigation; adaptive cruise control; Bose 10-speaker sound system; keyless open and start; 4G Wifi; Bluetooth and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
The interior standard features include: seven-passenger seating; heated seats (front and rear); tri-zone automatic climate control; six-way power seats up front with lumbar support; leather-wrapped heated steering wheel.
Exterior standard equipment includes: dual skyscape sunroof; 20 inch polished aluminum wheels; heated outside mirrors; fog lamps; rear hands-free power liftgate; roof rails; remote vehicle start.
And, last but not at all least, the standard safety equipment includes: rear park assist; rear cross-traffic alert; land change alert; following distance indicator; forward collision alert; enhanced automatic braking; lane keep assist; front pedestrian braking; and HD surround vision.
Also, standard on this Traverse, is Chevrolet’s Teen Driver system (introduced in 2015). This system mutes the audio on any device paired with the vehicle when front-seat occupants aren’t wearing their safety belts. It also delivers warnings when the vehicle is traveling faster than preset speeds.
Additionally, this year Chevrolet introduced an industry first, Buckle to Drive feature that reminds young drivers to buckle up before shifting into drive.
When you put it all together, this top of the line traverse actually gives you a ton of bang for your buck.
My overall impression after driving it for one week was quite impressive. It offers a good combination of power and athleticism to go along with all the refined creature comforts you can get on this High Country version.
Inside the cabin, while driving, the noise is limited. There is the usual road noise thrown up by the tires, but overall this traverse offers up a fairly serene driving experience.
According to the sticker provided by Chevrolet, its annual estimated fuel costs is $1,950.
Moreover, this traverse did quite well under the government’s crash test safety ratings.
It garnered an overall crash test rating of five stars, with five being the highest rating the US government awards. In the frontal crash test if gets five stars, four stars for the passenger side. In the side crash test, it got five stars for both front seat and rear seat tests, And, in the rollover test, it got four stars.
The traverse was introduced to the Chevrolet line up of vehicles in 2009. However, in 2018 it went through a full redesign. This 2020 version of the traverse is much more refined and stylishly designed than its original model.
The 2020 version is similar to the redesigned version that Chevrolet unveiled in 2018.
Trim levels offered on the Traverse are L, LS, LT (cloth and leather) RS; Premiere and the top of the line, high country. Standard pricing starts at $29,800 for the less expensive models.
The standard Chevrolet warranty on this mid-sized SUV is three years or 36,000 miles bumper-to-bumper limited warranty, whichever comes first. The powertrain warranty is 5 years, 60,000 miles, whichever comes first. Moreover, Chevrolet “throws in” a free first maintenance visit.
Overall cargo volume of the traverse is also impressive. With the second the third-row seats in the upright position, the rear cargo space is 23 cubic feet. When you fold down the third row, it creates 58.1 cubic feet of cargo space. And, with both the second and third rows folded down, you can get a whopping 98.2 cubic feet of cargo space.