Compromise king: 2018 Chevrolet Traverse RS priced from $42,995

October 10, 2017

We're not sure that the 2018 Chevrolet Traverse RS knows what it wants to be.

At $42,995 including a mandatory $945 destination charge, according to our friends at Cars Direct, the Traverse RS is an odd duck in the automaker's three-row crossover lineup. It's priced toward the upper end of the Traverse range, between the LT Leather and Premier trim levels.

MORE: Read our 2018 Chevrolet Traverse review

However, the 2018 Traverse RS forces some odd compromises.

The Traverse RS is the only variant of this lineup with a turbocharged inline-4 engine, which sounds intriguing until you dig into the details.

DON'T MISS: Should you really buy a three-row crossover?

Here's a look at why we're scratching our heads:

  • The Traverse RS isn't offered with all-wheel drive; it's front-wheel drive-only.
  • On paper there aren't many advantages to turbo-4 compared to the otherwise standard V-6. At 257 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque, turbo-4 is less powerful but a little torquier than the 310 hp, 266 lb-ft of torque V-6.
  • Perhaps most nonsensical is that the turbo-4 is thirstier than the V-6 when it comes to fuel economy: 20 mpg city, 26 highway, 22 combined for the turbo-4 and 18/27/21 mpg for the front-wheel drive V-6.

Chevy positions the Traverse RS as a sportier three-row crossover, but it comes up about 100 hp short of its most logical competitor, the 2018 Ford Explorer Sport. Additionally, the Explorer comes standard with all-wheel drive.

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