Drive Time: 2018 Traverse and 100 years of trucks |

Drive Time: 2018 Traverse and 100 years of trucks

Bud Wells
For The Tribune

I don't like to hear "shoulda, coulda, woulda," but I should have said, "Come get it, take it back, I don't want it."

Delivered to me recently was a 2018 Chevrolet Traverse — in front-wheel-drive configuration. Northern Colorado Chevy dealers don't stock FWD Traverses, why should I review one? This is all-wheel-drive and four-wheel-drive country, and the Traverse is a good one on all fours. The FWD Traverse seems out of place here; I wonder what city got the one with AWD?

I'm going to summarize in one paragraph my time with the Traverse, then finish the column with something of more pertinence from Chevrolet:

A new 9-speed automatic transmission is tied to the 310-horsepower, 3.6-liter, V-6 engine; the Traverse remains one of the roomiest in its class, with a new, easy-fold mechanism to the second-row seats and wider ingress and egress to the third row; it rides better with an improved five-link rear suspension. In the few drives I had in the Traverse, fuel-mileage averages ranged from 20.9 to 22.9. Sticker price on the Premier edition of the FWD Traverse was $46,265.

Chevrolet 100 years ago introduced the 1918 One-Ton truck. The first Chevy pickup I reviewed was a 1980 Chevy half-ton, 6-cylinder, which Jan, son Brent and I borrowed from Chuck Stevinson to deliver an upright piano to daughter Kim in Fort Worth. It was a $6,965 new pickup and, along with the piano, got whipped around in a dirt storm climbing Raton Pass. The drive to Texas and back to Denver resulted in overall fuel mileage of 17.5 for the Chevy half-ton.

Commemorating 100 years of trucks, Chevrolet has listed what it considers 10 of the most iconic designs in the company's truck history:

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» 1918 One-Ton. The first production truck from Chevrolet, a rolling chassis featuring an open cab, an inline-4-cylinder engine and an open frame.

» 1929 AC Light Delivery. The first Chevy truck to feature a closed cab, which created potential for interior design.

» 1938 Half-Ton. The first truck designed by Harley Earl and his design center team. A lower and longer truck with a styled grille and elegant, swept fenders.

» 1947 3100 Series. Bigger, stronger and sleeker than ever before, a new style following World War II; and a year before Ford introduced its first F-series in 1948.

» 1955 Cameo Carrier. Chevy's first fleetside design, the bed surface flush with the cab and fender, making for one complete shape from front to back.

» 1967 C10 Fleetside. Sleek design with a hint of wheel flare, and a line that flows away from the top of the bed line.

» 1973 C30 One-Ton Dually. The third-generation C/K square-body truck was the first crew cab dually to market. Some consider it to be the first modern Heavy Duty Truck.

» 1988 C/K 1500. The first truck design influenced by aereodynamics; it looked very advanced for its time. It looks modern 40 years later.

» 1999 Silverado 1500 LT Z71. This was the first generation that used the Silverado nameplate. It introduced the current Chevy front end.

» 2007 Silverado 1500. Simple, modern and powerful, featuring exaggerated wheel flares and clean body side. It brought back the "tough truck" look and feel.

— Bud Wells, a native of Wray, is a former Page 1 editor of the Denver Post and has reviewed automobiles for the past 40 years. He can be contacted at