Car Buyer Labs

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A red 2024 Chevy Trax RS driving toward the camera on a tree-lined road.

How Is the Chevy Trax Outdoing the Nissan Kicks?

After a one-year break, the Chevy Trax is back and better than ever. Chevy has made significant changes to the Trax, giving it a more rugged profile while increasing its interior space. The key has been to improve the Trax without taking away from what has always made it one of the most popular subcompact SUVs. This is not easy, as so many folks who drive these vehicles are looking to get the most for their money while staying within their budget.

Often it comes down to looking at the best value in subcompact SUV models, with two of the best being the 2024 Chevy Trax vs 2024 Nissan Kicks. You indeed need to know the price differences, but you also need to look at other factors, such as fuel economy, performance, and roominess. These criteria will show that price differential in and of itself is not the only way to value a vehicle. This will also help you determine whether to make tracks for a new Trax or to get your kicks with the Nissan Kicks.

Pricing and Trim Levels

Both the Chevy Trax and the Nissan Kicks are priced to fit most budgets. Despite the full redesign for the 2024 model year, Chevy has gone to great lengths to keep the Trax one of the most affordable models in its lineup. The 2024 Trax LS is the entry-level model, and it has an MSRP of $21,495. This is slightly more than the MSRP of $20,790 for a Nissan Kicks S, but Nissan did not make any major changes to their subcompact SUV for 2024 the way Chevy did.

This price differential continues across the various trim levels all the way to the top model. The mid-range Trax 1RS has an MSRP of $23,195, and the Trax LT comes in at an MSRP of $23,395, while the mid-priced Kicks SV has an MSRP of $22,810. The top tier Trax 2RS and ACTIV both have an MSRP of $24,995, a bit higher than the top trim Kicks SR with an MSRP of $23,510. Overall, you’ll pay a little more for a Chevy Trax than a Nissan Kicks, but you’ll also get an all-new design, not one riding on essentially the same platform since 2016 with a 2021 facelift.

The black interior, front seats, and dash of a 2024 Chevy Trax RS.

Performance and Fuel Economy

In keeping with the fact that Chevy and Nissan want to keep their respective subcompact SUV models affordably priced, the Trax and Kicks come with a standard powertrain across all trim levels. The 2024 Trax features a 1.2L EcoTec Turbo I-3 gas engine paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. This engine produces 137 horsepower and 162 lb-ft of torque. The 2024 Nissan Kicks has a larger 1.6L I-4 gas engine with an Xtronic continuously variable transmission. This engine is larger than the Trax and has four cylinders instead of three, but doesn’t have the same output as the Trax because of the absence of a turbocharger. As a result, the powertrain of the Nissan Kicks produces only 122 horsepower and 114 lb-ft.

This difference in output translates to performance. Where the Trax can accelerate to 60 miles per hour in an acceptable 8.8 seconds, it takes the Kicks a full 9.6 seconds to reach the same speed. In addition, the Trax has a top speed of 115 miles per hour, compared to the 110 miles per hour that is the maximum for the Kicks.

The one area where the Nissan Kicks has a slight edge is in fuel economy. The Kicks gets 33 miles per gallon in combined fuel economy, while the Chevy Trax averages 30 miles per gallon. Interestingly for a small SUV, both of these models only offer front-wheel drive. The 2022 Trax offered an optional all-wheel drivetrain, but it seems that Chevy decided to drop this option for the new generation of the Trax.

Interior Space

Both the 2024 Trax and 2024 Kicks have space for up to five passengers. However, the redesigned Trax provides more interior space than the Kicks, and it does so in a better-apportioned interior.

The 2024 Nissan Kicks gives you 43.7 inches of legroom in the front row, but the back row only offers 33.4 inches of legroom. This could be problematic for passengers with long legs. In addition, It only has 53 inches of shoulder room in both rows. This is significantly less than the 55.7 inches of shoulder room in the Trax’s front row and 54.3 inches in the back. In addition, the Trax gives you 41.9 inches of legroom in the front row and 38.7 inches for back seat passengers, making the back seat of the Trax more useful for longer trips.

This difference in space is also seen when it comes to cargo space. The 2024 Trax has 25.6 cu.ft of space in the trunk, which increases to 54.1 cu.ft when the rear seat is folded down. With the second-row seat in use, the Kicks has almost the same cargo space as the Trax at 25.3 cu.ft. However, folding down the back seat only increases this to a mere 32.3 cu.ft, nearly 22 cu.ft smaller than the Trax.

A pale green 2024 Chevy Trax driving on a coastal road overlooking the ocean.

Safety and Infotainment Technology

Chevrolet and Nissan have made safety a priority in their respective models. The 2024 Chevy Trax comes with standard Chevy Safety Assist, a suite of six different active driver assistance technologies. This includes automatic emergency braking that activates when the system detects an imminent front-end collision, and lane keep assist with lane departure warning, which uses slight steering adjustments to prevent you from drifting out of your lane. The 2024 Kicks also comes with the standard Nissan Safety Shield 360, which offers similar driver assistance features.

There is a slight difference when it comes to infotainment technology. The 2024 Trax has the Chevy Infotainment System on either an eight-inch touchscreen on the LT and 1RS trims or an 11-inch touchscreen on the 2RS, LT, and ACTIV models. This features wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability, so you can connect your smartphone to the system even if you leave the charging cable at home. The 2024 Nissan Kicks also has an infotainment system with a smaller seven-inch touchscreen on the S model and an eight-inch touchscreen on the SV and SR trims. However, there is no wireless connectivity, so you cannot make hands-free calls and texts and stream your favorite music unless you bring along charging cables.

Warranties and Complimentary Service

Both the Trax and the Kicks come with similar factory warranties. Each manufacturer gives you a limited warranty covering most parts, features, and systems for three years or 36,000 miles. In addition, each provides a five-year or 60,000-mile warranty for the powertrain. However, Chevy includes one free dealer maintenance visit during your first year of ownership of the Trax, which covers maintenance items like the first oil and oil filter change. The Nissan Kicks does not include this, so you will have to pay for this out of your own pocket.

Make Tracks to Your Chevy Dealer for a 2024 Trax

The fully redesigned 2024 Chevy Trax shows how an automaker can improve a vehicle while maintaining its affordability and without losing any of the features that made it popular to begin with. While the 2024 Nissan Kicks is a good option, it just cannot compare to the updated Chevy Trax. Chevy’s subcompact SUV has better performance, a roomier interior and cargo compartment, and a more advanced infotainment system. While the Trax does cost slightly more than the Kicks across all trim levels, you get far more car for your money, making this a good investment. This is why so many drivers will make tracks to their local Chevy dealership over the next year.