Chevrolet Traverse vs. Honda Pilot

By

Automotive Editor

John Diether has been a professional writer, editor, and producer since 1997. His work can be found on TV, radio, web, and various publications throughout the world.  He is a graduate of Northwestern University and has a 1992 Cadillac Brougham d’Elegance in his garage. 


, Automotive Editor - May 30, 2018

Buyers who must have three rows of seating and ample cargo space will find a lot to like in both the Chevrolet Traverse and Honda Pilot. While many crossovers claim to have room for the whole family, these two actually deliver it. They're more stylish than minivans, and more efficient than the largest SUVs. So, which one does more to earn your dollars? Let's find out.

See a side-by-side comparison of the Traverse & Pilot »

What the Traverse Gets Right

Redesigned for 2018, the Traverse is trimmer than before, but still leads the crossover class in interior volume. Eight adults can fit inside without contortions, along with 23 cubic feet of cargo. With the third row folded, load space expands to 58.1 cubic feet, and maxes out at 98.2 cubic feet with all seats out of the way. There's also a 10-inch deep storage compartment hidden in the floor.

Befitting a vehicle of its size, the Traverse carries a 3.6-liter V6 that produces 310 horsepower and 266 pound-feet of torque. Efficiency isn't bad, thanks in part to a new nine-speed automatic transmission. The Traverse is EPA-rated at 21 miles per gallon in combined city and highway driving with front-wheel drive, or 20 mpg with all-wheel drive.

The sporty RS model gets a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 255 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. Available only with front-wheel drive, the 2.0-liter is rated at 22 mpg combined.

What the Pilot Gets Right

The Pilot also deserves kudos for its comfortable interior and legitimate room for eight people. Behind the third row, there's 16.5 feet of cargo space, plus a storage compartment under the floor. The cargo area grows to 46.8 cubic feet with the third row folded, and 83.9 cubic feet with both rows flat.

The Pilot's 3.5-liter V6 stirs up 280 hp and 262 lb-ft of torque. The upper trims get a nine-speed automatic transmission, while the rest carry a six-speed automatic. The Pilot is EPA-rated at 22 mpg combined with the standard automatic, and 23 mpg with the nine-speed. All-wheel drive lowers these ratings by one mpg, but also allows the Pilot to tow up to 5,000 pounds.

What's the Difference?

When it comes to passenger comfort and performance, very little separates these large crossovers. The Traverse offers an extra dose of power, which the Pilot counters with slightly better efficiency. Beyond that, we can only point to the Traverse's unrivaled cargo-carrying ability. The Pilot holds a lot, but simply doesn't measure up to the Chevy.

Our Verdict: Chevrolet Traverse

The Chevy Traverse is the perfect crossover for families who need all the room they can get.

Take a closer look at the Chevrolet Traverse »

Take a closer look at the Honda Pilot »

Side-by-side comparison of features, pricing, photos and more!

, Automotive Editor

John Diether has been a professional writer, editor, and producer since 1997. His work can be found on TV, radio, web, and various publications throughout the world.  He is a graduate of Northwestern University and has a 1992 Cadillac Brougham d’Elegance in his garage. 


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