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Chevy Traverse, Buick Enclave might not follow the GMC Acadia's downsizing

GM has a new plan for its big crossovers.

The downsizing of the all-new 2017 GMC Acadia doesn't necessarily mean that the crossover's platform mates, the Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave, will eventually adopt a smaller footprint, a top General Motors executive has revealed.

GMC pulled the somewhat surprising move of unveiling a significantly shrunken Acadia at the 2016 Detroit auto show, suggesting that a similar downsizing plan could be in place for the Chevy Traverse and Buick Enclave. If those two crossovers were to follow the blueprint of the 2017 Acadia, they would arrive about 7-inches shorter and 700 pounds lighter than their predecessors.

However, GM product head Mark Reuss has indicated that smaller versions of the Traverse and Enclave aren't foregone conclusions. In fact, it sounds as though GM is planning to differentiate it large crossovers by offering them in different sizes.

"The brand separation in size and mission and the positioning of these vehicles," he told Automotive News, "has never been more differentiated."

In all likelihood the new versions of the Traverse and Enclave will ride on a long-wheelbase version of the Acadia's platform. That means the big crossovers won't shed as much weight as the Acadia, but they should offer significantly more cargo room; the all-new Acadia sacrificed about 40 cubic feet or cargo room by lopping off 7-inches from its overall length.

In the case of the Chevy, that longer wheelbase should allow the division to slot a new utility vehicle between the Traverse and the smaller Equinox. It's possible that the long-wheelbase platform could eventually spawn a three-row crossover for GM's Cadillac brand as an alternative to the body-on-frame Escalade.

Both the Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave are slated to be redesigned in 2017.

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