Chevy Traverse Years To Avoid | All 15 Best & Worst Years 2023

Source: True Car

More than 14 years have passed since General Motors debuted the Chevrolet Traverse at the Chicago Auto Show, where it impressed with its 3.6-liter V6 engine and 280 horsepower. However, from the moment it hit dealerships in the fall of 2008, the Traverse was plagued by a number of problems.

A Traverse’s reliability and maintenance cost has come under investigation after multiple complaints from owners of certain model years. Some models should be better avoided when shopping for a certified used Traverse. With that information in hand, you’ll be able to choose wisely.

Chevy Traverse years to avoid include 2009-2016 and 2020; they are considered the worst. The best years for Chevy Traverse include 2017-2019 and 2021-2023. This result was concluded from trustworthy sources such as NHTSA, Edmund, JD Power, and Kelley Blue Book.

Chevy Traverse Years To Avoid

There have been some great Chevy Traverse models, but there have also been some real stinkers. After so much research, we have compiled a list of Chevrolet Traverse model years to avoid if you’re in the market for a used model.

9. Worst Year: 2013 Chevy Traverse (3.82 Rating)

Source: Goodcarbadcar

While the 2013 model year was reliable and had fewer faults, it was not without issues. There were major engine problems with this model year. Excessive oil consumption was also noted by owners, which might cause the engine to fail catastrophically if not addressed quickly.

Failure of the air conditioning, heating, and power steering pumps were also often reported issues. Because of these problems, the 2013 Traverse has a poorer reliability rating than normal for its model year.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

8. Worst Year: 2015 Chevy Traverse (3.81 Rating)


Another Traverse model to avoid is the 2015 Chevy Traverse. The melted air conditioner compressor that failed at about 50,000 miles was one of the most frustrating problems. Some drivers claim that the melted compressor is to blame for their vehicle’s stalling and that the fact that it occurred at such little mileage only adds insult to injury.

As a result of serious problems with the vehicle’s engine cooling and transmission, Consumer Reports rated the 2015 Traverse’s reliability as only 1.0 out of 5.0, which is awful.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

7. Worst Year: 2020 Chevy Traverse (3.80 Rating)

Source: jdpower

Although just three years have passed since its first introduction, many problems have already caused it to be ranked as the worst year. Some 2020 Chevrolet Traverse drivers have reported excessive braking noise, frozen audio systems, and sluggish gear shifts are common issues of this model.

Chevrolet issued a technical service bulletin for the issue in the 2020 model year since the braking issues were so severe. The 2020 Chevrolet Traverse has accumulated 151 technical service bulletins and eight recalls, making it one of the worst years to avoid.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

6. Worst Year: 2016 Chevy Traverse (3.76 Rating)

Source: carfax

The 2016 model was the first to feature OnStar 4G LTE connectivity, enabling internet access. But we cannot compromise on a lot of problems associated with this model. Loss of power and acceleration failure are two of the most typical faults with the 2016 Chevrolet Traverse’s powertrain.

In addition, its numerous cars’ power steering systems gave out unexpectedly while their owners were driving. Its poor fuel economy and below-average towing capability for a mid-size SUV prevent it from being a good model to buy.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

5. Worst Year: 2012 Chevy Traverse (3.53 Rating)


There have been multiple reports of engine problems in the 2012 Chevrolet Traverse, so it is best to avoid this model year as well. Several drivers complained that the engine suddenly lost power, necessitating pricey maintenance.

Defective timing chains were the primary cause of engine failure in a 2012 Chevy Traverse, necessitating replacement. Exhausted spark plugs are another possible cause of a leaky valve gasket and hoses. To prevent further engine damage, you must fix these broken parts as soon as they cease operating.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

4. Worst Year: 2014 Chevy Traverse (3.36 Rating)

Source: Youtube / Gala FFM

There was a dramatic increase in 2014 Traverse recalls and customer complaints compared to the mostly 2013 model year. It has received over 300 complaints and six recalls from the NHTSA. At about 70,000 kilometers, power failure became a serious safety issue.

Several owners have reported that there have been instances where the SUV stopped unexpectedly, even while driving on a busy highway. In addition, The Stabilitrak traction control and the fuel gauge both gave incorrect readings in the 2014 Traverse due to electrical problems.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

3. Worst Year: 2011 Chevy Traverse (3.17 Rating)

Source: topcarspecs

The 2011 model year was also a candidate for the worst Traverse model because it suffered from the same problems as the 2010 model year. There have been 27 documented complaints about the vehicle’s engine failure on CarComplaints.

Some owners have reported that, despite careful maintenance, they are still encountering this issue. In addition,  2011 models were a common source of concerns about power steering. The 2011 Traverse, according to CarComplaints, is the worst year for the model.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

Related: 22 Best & Worst Chevy Silverado 1500 Years | 2023 Updated

2. Worst Year: 2009 Chevy Traverse (3.16 Rating)

Source: rahmadicars.blogspot

Unfortunately, the Traverse’s initial version isn’t very dependable. It was commended for being stylish, peaceful, and large, but it ultimately wasn’t worth the hassle due to a number of problems. reports that the 2009 Traverse experienced widespread transmission problems, costing thousands of dollars to fix for owners with excessive mileage.

Difficult turning is also a common complaint about this model. There are 16 written complaints from dissatisfied Traverse owners, all describing the vehicle’s less-than-stellar turning capacity in detail.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

1. Worst Year: 2010 Chevy Traverse (3.12 Rating)

Source: caranddriver

The 2010 Chevy Traverse performed poorly and, worst of all, even worse than its predecessor. Over a thousand complaints were filed on, and five recalls were issued for this model. The main problem is the engine, and that’s a show-stopper.

Many drivers’ bad luck began with the appearance of the “check engine” warning. Engine noises, timing chain issues, power loss, etc., are only some of the symptoms of a bad engine. It was also given CarComplaints’ “Beware of the Clunker” award.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

Chevy Traverse Years To Buy As Used

The best years of the Traverse are the ones we’ve highlighted below.

6. Best Year: 2017 Chevy Traverse (3.97 Rating)

Source: theglight.blogspot

There were far fewer complaints and recalls for the 2017 model year compared to previous years, making it one of the best years for the Traverse. It had minor electrical problems, such as erratic fuel gauges and malfunctioning oxygen sensors, but nothing serious. There were not many revisions or upgrades made for this model year.

The Graphite Edition, however, was released at this time, and it came with special features, including 20-inch dark charcoal wheels, twin exhausts, black bowtie badges, inlaid stairs, and a choice of four exterior colors (Metallic Black, Metallic Grey, Metallic Red, and Pearl White).

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

5. Best Year: 2018 Chevy Traverse (4.01 Rating)

Source: caranddriver

The 2018 model year marked the beginning of the second generation of the Traverse. There may be some concerns with the 2018 model year, but overall the second-generation Traverse is far more reliable than the initial.

In 2018, Chevrolet redesigned the Traverse from the ground up, making significant upgrades to the car’s handling, cabin quality, and technological offerings. This model’s nine-speed automated transmission standard was designed to reduce fuel consumption and enhance ride comfort.

High-quality materials were used throughout the cabin, and there was plenty of room for three rows of passengers.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

4. Best Year: 2019 Chevy Traverse (4.05 Rating)

Source: Chevrolet

Chevrolet redesigned the Traverse for 2018, although the 2019 model is seen as superior due to transmission problems that plagued the 2018 model. It’s nearly identical to its predecessor in appearance and functionality, but it’s more powerful and reliable.

The 2019 model year has noteworthy improvements, including a body that is 400 pounds lighter and the addition of four-wheel drive. The average price for a three-row SUV can still be quite high ($20,425 – $33,450), but it is well worth the investment.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

3. Best Year: 2021 Chevy Traverse (4.32 Rating)

Source: the car connection

The 2021 Chevrolet Traverse is another good option in the lineup. With the fewest reported problems and a Top Safety Pick award from the IIHS, the 2021 Traverse is one of the best model years available.

One of the key reasons the 2021 Chevrolet Traverse is so good is its potent and economical V6 engine. As the trim level rises, the engine’s potential for producing roughly 310 horsepower becomes more apparent. The 2021 Traverse’s fuel economy is yet another reason to consider purchasing one.

Unlike most SUVs, it can get 25 mpg when driven exclusively on the motorway. The 2021 Chevrolet Traverse has superior stability and handling to other SUVs of its size. You can easily transport bulky bags and passengers thanks to the 5,000-pound towing capacity.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

2. Best Year: 2023 Chevy Traverse (4.40 Rating)

Source: Edmunds

The 2023 Traverse is yet another excellent choice for a midsize SUV. With its great success, it is ranked as #1 in Upper Midsize SUVs by J.D. Power. The 2023 Traverse excels in every category, from its vast list of standard technology and driver-assistance technologies to its spacious cabin, capable V6 engine, massive load space, and quiet ride.

The user-friendly and feature-packed nature of its entertainment system is highly regarded. It can get up to speed quickly, and all three rows of seats offer plenty of space. There are six different trim levels to choose from. However, the LT Leather trim is suggested due to its many comfort features compared to the standard LS model.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

1. Best Year: 2022 Chevy Traverse (4.47 Rating)

Source: Auto Traders

We found 2022 to be the most trustworthy year for the Chevrolet Traverse. If you need a three-row SUV and don’t mind spending a little more, the ideal year to get a Traverse is 2022.

Mostly, the most recent models have the most cutting-edge features and technology and are more reliable. However, the latest 2023 model still can not beat the already best 2022 Chevy Traverse.

The appearance and interior of the 2022 Traverse were revised for the model year. Automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, lane-keeping assist, and automatic high-beam headlights are just some of the many driver-assistance systems that have become standard on modern vehicles. An optional 8-inch display can be installed in the instrument cluster.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

Common Chevy Traverse Problems

Among the many unpleasant comments made over the past few years, these were the most common. Having this knowledge will help you make the most beneficial decision for your situation.

1. Engine Problems

Many models of the Chevy Traverse, including the 2010 and 2011 versions, have had engine issues. Decreased engine strength, driving with a stalled engine, and engine warning light on are just some of the engine issues that have arisen for Chevy Traverse drivers on the highway.

2. Problems With Steering

Steering issues are another common complaint about the Chevy Traverse, especially for the 2011 model year. The Chevrolet Traverse experienced various steering problems, such as shaky controls, leaky power steering fluid, and a leaky power steering pump.

3. Transmission Difficulties

Transmission issues are among the most frequent automobile difficulties, and the Traverse SUV is no exception. There have been many instances of 2009 Traverse owners having transmission problems after 80,000 miles.

Drivers may notice a number of issues, including low fluid levels, a lack of reaction, a dragging clutch, grinding or shaking, difficulty changing, slipping gears, a burning smell, etc. when their transmission is malfunctioning.

4. High Oil Consumption

The Chevy Traverse, specifically the 2010 and 2011 models, had problems with excessive oil usage. The car used up more oil than it was supposed to, frequently leading to a total failure of the car. Drivers face significant financial losses as a result of these issues.

5. Strange Sounds When Stopping

Some 2020 Chevrolet Traverse drivers have reported hearing strange sounds when applying the brakes. This is not the most common problem with the Traverse, but it is still something to watch because it manifested itself at such low mileage.

Source: YouTube / Repair Tips & Secrets


1. Is Chevy Traverse Reliable?

According to Repairpal, with a 3.0 out of 5.0 Reliability Rating, the Chevrolet Traverse comes in at #22 on the list of 26 midsize SUVs, which is not so good. To sum up the Chevy Traverse’s reliability, I’d say it’s fairly hit-or-miss. This full-size crossover is worth it in some model years but has reliability issues in others. That is why it is better to know which model years to avoid.

2. How Long Will Chevy Traverse Last?

Under normal conditions, a well-maintained Traverse should last up to 200,000 miles. Driving an average of 15,000 miles a year, which most Americans do, will give trouble-free performance for 13 years.

3. What is The Best Chevy Traverse Generation To Buy?

The best Chevy Traverse vehicles to consider purchasing are those from the second generation. You may rely on them more because they have improved performance and are more reliable. The 2022 Traverse is the best model year available, with the fewest reported problems and a high-reliability score.


Knowing which Chevy Traverse model years to avoid and which to consider is key to finding a reliable SUV. If you choose the wrong model year, you may have to spend a lot on repairs. On the other hand, The best years will provide you with better driving sensations compared to a brand-new car itself.

Now that you know this, you can confidently drive your Chevy Traverse and make a choice that is good for your wallet with the help of our handy guide.

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