Rendered: Chevrolet Trax Refresh
The Chevrolet Trax is a crossover, with global origins—it’s based on the same Gamma II platform as the South Korean Chevy Aveo and Sonic, the Buick Encore, and the Opel Mokka. After being sold elsewhere from 2013 to 2014, the 2015 Trax finally made it to the United States to go up against the Jeep Renegade, Kia Soul, and other small crossovers. It’s powered by a little 138 hp turbo-four (in the United States) hooked up to a six-speed automatic transmission.
The Trax was refreshed pretty quickly for American buyers, with the 2017s getting some supposedly Corvette-inspired design cues; projector headlights; LED daytime running lights; and other design touchups outside, with a new dashboard inside. By then, it was actually four years old.
Because GM’s Global Emerging Markets platform that underpins the new Tracker globally is said to be unsuitable for the United States, we may see yet another refresh for the Chevrolet Trax to prolong its lifespan. What can we expect? Surprisingly, despite its almost invisible place on American streets, we do expect some changes. First, the 138 horsepower four-cylinder is likely to be upgraded, since it’s pretty much bottom of class. Chevrolet has other engines that can help, but don’t expect the 220 horsepower four—that would likely overwhelm the crossover’s front wheel drive setup without GM putting a lot more money into it. The new three-cylinder engines from the Trailblazer and Encore GX seem like a good bet for inclusion in the smaller Trax.
There’s been talk of moving to the new G2XX platform, which would provide better legroom (VSS-S has also been proposed but that seems unlikely) and cargo space.
Moving forward in electronic architecture would also allow more safety features, important at a time when other automakers have been making forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, and such standard. The interior is almost certainly going to be upgraded as well, with a much larger touchscreen standard; at the very least, it should match the newer Jeep Compass.
All these changes are likely to boost the price, but not by much; GM will end up having to eat some of the difference as the market has become more competitive. Expect the refreshed Trax to be sold for under $25,000, over a thousand more than the current price—but with many more standard features. It’s that or price it higher, and then immediately slap rebates on the hood, cutting resale value.
If GM decides to refresh the Trax again, they will have to change their pricing structure, as the newer, larger Trailblazer costs less in base form than the Trax. However, with some updates to keep it fresh and lower costs, a more affordable and more modern Trax could prove to be a compelling entry level vehicle.
James Brown was born in Seattle, Washington and has a passion for the automotive industry. Particularly interested in off-road capable trucks and SUVs, James spends much of his free time navigating off-road trails and enjoying other outdoor activities.