2009 Chevrolet Traverse starts at $28,990

Chevrolet's 2009 Traverse slides in $370 cheaper than the Saturn Outlook, and packs a more advanced version of the 3.6-liter V-6 engine that utilizes direct injection and produces a little more power than its Saturn cousin. Direct-injection engine and aerodynamic improvements help the Traverse post a city fuel economy rating of 17 mpg, a touch better than Outlook's 16 mpg rating.

The crossover's price can quickly escalate by adding options like 20-inch wheels, all-wheel drive, power liftgate, navigation system, Bose stereo, rearview camera, sunroof, and rear-seat entertainment system. Exact prices for these options are still unknown, but it's more than likely the Traverse will be able to nip at the heels of GM's more expensive crossovers by the time you load it up. Buyers looking to option out their crossover might want to consider the Buick Enclave and take advantage of its quieter ride.

Available trim levels include Chevy's typical LT, LS, and LTZ offerings. Sadly, Chevrolet hasn't announced the surcharge for more luxurious trim levels. Expect to pay a few thousand more than the Traverse's $28,990 base (including the required $735 destination charge) for the privilege of more standard equipment.

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