GM's Traverse targets Toyota, Honda

Feb. 6, 2008 at 6:32 PM

CHICAGO, Feb. 6 (UPI) -- General Motors Corp. has Toyota's Highlander and Honda's Pilot in its sights with the midsize 2009 Chevrolet Traverse crossover shown at the Chicago Auto Show.

The Traverse, a car-like, family-hauler that reaches showrooms this fall, will be built at GM's Spring Hill, Tenn., assembly plant.

"We are going after the Toyota Highlander and the Honda Pilot with this vehicle," said Chevrolet General Manager Ed Peper. "We think the Traverse is the right vehicle at the right time."

Base pricing for the seven or eight-passenger Traverse is expected to be in the same range as Saturn's Outlook SUV, which starts at around $28,000.

GM sold 136,799 Buick Enclave, Acadia and Outlook crossovers last year, The Detroit Free Press reported.

The stylish Traverse has a new direct-injection 3.6-liter V6 engine and is expected to get better mileage than its three cousins.

"You can have all the greatest features in the world, but if you're plowing down the street in a vehicle that looks like a box, how good is that," said vehicle line executive Sue Wilson.

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