2017 Chevrolet Trax Gets Nip and Tuck
Compact Crossover Refreshed, Refined
Many were scratching their heads in 2013 when Buick debuted the Encore, a diminutive SUV that would be offered alongside the fullsize Enclave. Now that the Envision is filling in the middle, the lineup makes a bit more sense. However, customers responded to the Encore, making it one of Buick’s most popular models. Chevrolet quickly followed suit with the Trax in 2014. It has proven surprisingly popular, out-selling the Suburban in January. To keep the Trax fresh in this cutthroat segment, Chevrolet is giving its entry-level cute-ute a thorough freshening for 2017.
Unfortunately, that refresh does not include the higher-output direct-injected 1.4L turbo from the Buick Encore Sport. The base and only powertrain option remains the 138 hp, 148 lb-ft port-injected 1.4L turbo mated to a six-speed automatic. As before, buyers can choose between front and all-wheel-drive. The most obvious visual change is a new front fascia, giving the Trax a closer familial resemblance to the new Malibu and Cruze. On the inside, the novel, but controversial, motorcycle-style half-digital gauge cluster is replaced by a more conventional set of analog gauges. The overall dashboard gets a more mature, curved look compared to last year’s model. The big functional change on the inside for 2017 is Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. As before, the Trax offers standard 4G LTE mobile hotspot capability.
New for the 2017 model are available active safety features such as blind spot alert, rear cross traffic alert, and forward collision and lane departure warning. A rearview camera is standard. A top-level Premier trim joins the base LS and mid-level LT trims. The LT and Premiere trims feature LED driving lights. The 2017 Trax will be in Chevy showrooms fall 2016.