The tiny crossover segment has received a lot of attention over the past two years with new entries from Honda, Fiat, and Mazda launching just last year. While there aren’t new entrants for 2017, Chevrolet has taken the opportunity to give its participant, the Trax, a mid-life update.
As with the subcompact Sonic hatchback and Buick Encore with which it shares its platform, the Trax receives a brand new look inside and out with design elements that bring it in line with the new Cruze and Malibu sedans.
New headlamps, dotted with LED daytime running lights flank a redesigned upper grille, while the lower fascia receives a hexagonal chrome-accented main intake. It’s a bolder look, but also a more mature and upscale one. Fog lamps, available on mid and high-level trims, receive a chrome-accented housing.
As with other Chevy models, the Trax adopts Premier as the nomenclature for top-of-the-line. LTZ is no more. Premier trims can be differentiated from the LT and LS by LED taillights and 18-inch wheels, while the interior receives leatherette upholstery, plus a two-tone dashboard finish to match the colour of the seats.
A new dashboard design is the biggest change to the Trax's cabin. Gentle curves and a wraparound design host a more traditional instrument cluster design; the old model’s chunky pod is replaced by a conventional analogue speedometer and tach, and is joined by an offset trip computer display. The lower half of the console is of a simple design with clear rotary knobs, big buttons, and easily accessed USB ports. While the Trax’s new dashboard sports higher quality materials with fewer panel gaps, and classy metal-finish accents, it loses its secondary upper glove box.
The Trax also gets Chevy’s new MyLink infotainment system which features Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. OnStar is standard and gives the Trax standard 4G LTE in-car internet, plus built-in Wi-Fi which can be used for up to seven devices. Also available on the Trax are four new active safety system. While a blind-spot convex mirror and reverse camera are standard equipment, the 2017 Trax can be had with blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, lane-departure warning, and forward collision warning. Note that emergency autonomous braking is not yet available.
All Trax trims are powered by a 1.4-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. The engine produces 138 hp and 148 lb-ft of torque, which is near the bottom of the class for power; some rivals offer up to 180 hp. All trims come standard with front-wheel drive, while all-wheel drive is optional on all trims. Previously, AWD was not available on the base LS trim.
In addition to the in-car and active safety technology, buyers are certain to appreciate the Trax’s spacious cargo hold. Thanks to the Trax’s upright design and squared-off roofline, owners can pack more into the Trax than any other rival, Honda HR-V aside.
This vehicle has not yet been reviewed