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SAFETY | 9 out of 10
Five stars, frontal impact and side impact protection; four stars, rollover rating
Available safety equipment includes ABS, traction control
Brake intervention of the stability control felt seamless
The advertising for family-oriented vehicles like the 2009 Chevrolet Traverse usually makes a point of highlighting the vehicle's safety credentials. With the 2009 Chevrolet Traverse, GM's marketing team has a lot to highlight.
The Chevrolet Traverse is similar to its corporate cousins in many ways, and that includes the fact that they all boast outstanding crash-test ratings. While the IIHS has not yet had a chance to conduct any crash tests, NHTSA has subjected the 2009 Chevrolet Traverse to its full battery of tests, and the results are impressive. The Traverse Chevrolet earned the highest possible rating, five stars, from NHTSA for both driver and passenger protection during frontal impact tests. The 2009 Chevrolet Traverse also excelled in side impact tests, again earning a perfect five-star rating for impacts on either side. The only category in which the 2009 Chevrolet Traverse didn't earn a full five stars was in rollover protection, where the Chevrolet Traverse's height played a role in its four-star rollover rating.
Strong crash-test results tell only part of the story when it comes to vehicle safety ratings; the other half is composed of available and standard safety equipment, which the Chevrolet Traverse offers in spades. Cars.com reviewers reports that "front, side-impact and side curtain airbags are standard," and "the curtains cover all three rows of seats." In addition to the inflatable protection, ConsumerGuide says that "antilock four-wheel disc brakes" and an "antiskid system" are included on all Traverse Chevrolets. Autoblog chimes in with a few pros and cons on the new 2009 Chevrolet Traverse; while they praise the fact that "the brake intervention of the stability control felt seamless," they were disappointed to find that the Traverse Chevrolet, a capable towing vehicle, does not have a "trailer sway control available."
One of the safety problems typically associated with larger vehicles is that they offer poor visibility. While this may be true in many large crossovers and SUVs, reviews read by TheCarConnection.com show that the 2009 Chevrolet Traverse offers a surprisingly good field of view. ConsumerGuide claims there is "good outward visibility thanks to big mirrors and unobtrusive rear headrests," although they mention "the view to the front corners is partially obscured by thick roof pillars." Also earning brownie points for the Chevrolet Traverse are the "blind spot mirrors" that Autoblog reviewers find "rather than those expensive blind spot sensors," and they report the effective mirrors give "you a good look at what's tucked in behind you."
Bigger is better when it comes in the form of the 2009 Chevrolet Traverse, where the large, sturdy frame earns great crash-test ratings.