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Zero to 60 MPH
Speed in 1/4 Mile
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Traverse’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Ascent doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
The Traverse AWD’s standard fuel tank has 2.4 gallons more fuel capacity than the Ascent (21.7 vs. 19.3 gallons).
The Traverse has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Ascent doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.
In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Chevrolet Traverse higher (6 out of 10) than the Subaru Ascent (3). This means the Traverse produces up to 23.4 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Ascent every 15,000 miles.
The Traverse stops shorter than the Ascent:
70 to 0 MPH
Car and Driver
For better traction, the Traverse has larger tires than the Ascent (255/65R18 vs. 245/60R18).
The Chevrolet Traverse’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Subaru Ascent only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.
The Traverse has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Ascent doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.
The Traverse has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Ascent doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Traverse’s wheelbase is 7.1 inches longer than on the Ascent (120.9 inches vs. 113.8 inches).
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Traverse is 2.9 inches wider in the front and 2.8 inches wider in the rear than on the Ascent.
The Traverse RS handles at .84 G’s, while the Ascent Limited pulls only .79 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.
The Traverse RS AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Ascent Touring (27 seconds @ .65 average G’s vs. 27.4 seconds @ .63 average G’s).
The front grille of the Traverse uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Ascent doesn’t offer active grille shutters.
The Traverse uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Ascent doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.
The Traverse has .4 inches more front hip room, 1 inch more front shoulder room, 1.9 inches more rear shoulder room, 1.9 inches more third row headroom, 1.8 inches more third row legroom, 2.6 inches more third row hip room and .3 inches more third row shoulder room than the Ascent.
The Traverse’s cargo area provides more volume than the Ascent.
Behind Third Seat
23 cubic feet
17.8 cubic feet
Third Seat Folded
57.8 cubic feet
47.5 cubic feet
Second Seat Folded
98.2 cubic feet
86.5 cubic feet
Pressing a switch automatically lowers or raises the Traverse High Country’s third row seats, to make changing between cargo and passengers easier. The Ascent doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.
To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Traverse Premier/High Country’s liftgate can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Ascent doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its liftgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.
The Traverse uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Ascent uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.
The Traverse Premier/High Country’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Ascent doesn’t offer an easy entry system.
The power windows standard on both the Traverse and the Ascent have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Traverse is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Ascent prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.
On a hot day the Traverse’s driver can lower all the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Ascent can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
Consumer Reports rated the Traverse’s headlight performance “Very Good,” a higher rating than the Ascent’s headlights, which were rated “Good.”
The Traverse’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Subaru only offers heated mirrors on the Ascent Premium/Limited/Touring.
When the Traverse Premier/High Country is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Ascent’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.
The Traverse Premier/High Country has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Ascent offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.
To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Chevrolet Traverse Premier/High Country has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) for the front seat. The Ascent doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.
The Traverse is available in both front-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The Ascent doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.
According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Traverse is less expensive to operate than the Ascent because typical repairs cost much less on the Traverse than the Ascent, including $174 less for a starter and $394 less for front struts.
The Chevrolet Traverse outsold the Subaru Ascent by over four to one during 2018.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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