Chevy Equinox Reviews: Price, Reliability and More

Chevy Equinox Reviews: Price, Reliability and More

In almost every specific aspect that comes into play when comparing new car options – factors such as price, fuel economy, interior quality, performance and handling – the Chevrolet Equinox is, well, to put it simply, pretty average.

But that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

If you add up all its satisfactory ratings across the board, the Equinox actually makes for a decent option if you're in the market for a compact SUV.

And, best of all, in the world of compact SUVs, it’s actually one of the largest options on the market.

All in all, the Equinox makes for a fantastic bargain thanks to its broad menu of infotainment and safety systems that come standard, not to mention the fact that it's priced lower than other competitors in its the class of compact SUVs like the GMC Terrain, the Honda CR-V, the Subaru Forester and the Toyota RAV4.

How much does the Chevrolet Equinox cost?

In addition to the base model of the Chevrolet Equinox, three additional upper-trim variants are available, too: the LS, the LT and the Premier. The base price of a new Equinox is just shy of $24,000, which makes it one of the more affordable compact SUV options out there today. The LS starts at $26,300, the LT at $27,500 and the Premier at $31,400.

While new Equinoxes vary in terms of cost from $24,000 for the base model to $33,100 for the top-tier Premium edition, used models hover in the range of $13,000-$20,000. As one of the lowest priced but largest compact SUVs on the market today, opting for a used Equinox equates to even greater savings.

To make achieving those savings even easier, Shift provides best-in-class service contracts at a fair price with no pressure to buy. That means you get the fantastic pricing and value of a used car, truck or SUV – be it an Equinox or any other model – with the same quality of bumper-to-bumper protection that comes with a new car.

How large is the interior of the Chevrolet Equinox?

If the Equinox stands out for anything it's its generous legroom in the rear seating area, allowing big-and-tall adults to ride fairly comfortably. The amount of headroom that Chevrolet allowed for on the Equinox is decent, at least on models that don't feature the optional panoramic sunroof. The front seats are well-crafted and rather comfy, too.

It provides comfortable seating for five people, but some of the inside components are lackluster when compared to other compact SUVs, and the cargo capacity is typical for a vehicle its size, too. Overall, in terms of the interior's aesthetic, it shows that Chevrolet chose to focus on toughness and utility rather than elegance and extravagance, which, generally speaking, is typical of the brand.

The cargo space allotment in the Equinox is roughly on par with other small SUVs. With the seats up, the back bay sizes up at around 30 cubic feet, which allows space for a decent amount of luggage or shopping. Folding down the rear seats more than doubles that space, making for a total of approximately 64 cubic feet altogether.

The Equinox is a good option if you want a simple crossover with lots of room for passengers. However, this is a competitive market, and other competitors offer tempting alternatives. The Subaru Forester dominates the list of compact SUVs in terms of largest cargo capacity and all-wheel-drive comes standard, too, and the GMC Terrain sports a better-crafted interior.

What engine options does the Chevrolet Equinox have?

The engine that comes standard on the Equinox is a 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that offers excellent gas mileage, juicing up to 25-26 miles out of each gallon in the city and 30-31 mpg on the freeway. The tradeoff, however, is that with a total horsepower of only 170, it lacks pep. It's decent enough for daily driving, although it can feel a tad sluggish when it comes time to accelerate. Nevertheless, the standard six-speed automatic transmission switches gears smoothly and, perhaps best of all, it prioritizes fuel efficiency optimization over performance.

A punchier 2.0-liter powertrain is available, which makes for a significantly upped horsepower of 252. But it’s also less fuel efficient, albeit only slightly, banking 22 mpg in the city and 28-29 mpg on the freeway. That said, the pickup is substantially quicker and the power significantly stronger than that of the base model. In reality, the bigger engine's horsepower rating is one of the best in the compact SUV class, outdone only by a rival or two by Jeep.

Also, interestingly enough, swapping the standard FWD drivetrain for the all-wheel-drive upgrade only lowers these estimates only by 1 mpg.

Chevrolet Equinox LS (from $15,850)

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How do newer Chevrolet Equinox differ from earlier model years?

Since the Equinox's debut in 2005, over the years Chevy has gradually modernized and refined its look and feel. The most major redesign came with the 2018 model, which brought a new turbocharged diesel engine option – allowing for a significantly improved fuel economy of 28 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the freeway – as well as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard features, too. 

The 2019 Equinox received an adaptive cruise control function, a pedestrian detection alert system and also allows passengers to wirelessly charge their phones and tablets.

The list of safety functions grew on the 2020 model, with the addition of lane departure warning, lane keep assist, forward collision and automatic emergency braking systems. Chevrolet also added automatic high-beam headlights but nixxed the turbodiesel engine option for the 2020 model, too.

Aside from slight cosmetic tweaks, the 2021 edition of the Equinox is essentially the same as the 2020 version.

Chevrolet Equinox LS (from $19,450)

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What kind of tech and safety features does the Chevrolet Equinox feature?

Standard on the Equinox in terms of its tech features is Chevrolet's Infotainment 3 system, which is housed in a 7-inch touchscreen interface that's sharp, easy to understand and navigate, as well as Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, Bluetooth, four USB ports, a Wi-Fi hotspot, voice recognition and a six-speaker sound system. Additional upgrade options include a 7-speaker Bose premium stereo, an 8-inch touch screen, two more USB ports, wireless device charging, satellite radio, HD Radio and a rear-seat entertainment system, too.

Chevrolet Equinox LS (from $13,050)

Chevrolet Equinox LS (from $13,050)
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How does the Chevrolet Equinox’s interior compare to other compact SUVs?

Both the Chevy Equinox and the GMC Terrain are manufactured by General Motors and so therefore actually have a lot in common. Both vehicles have similar engine options and amenities, as well as similar gas mileage estimates as well as cabin layouts and cargo capacities. Though the Terrain is a tad more expensive, starting at $25,000 – $1,200 more than the Equinox – mostly because of greater attention to detail in the interior. But in terms of performance, both the Equinox and the Terrain are excellent options.

When sized up alongside the Subaru Forester, both are built with roomy rear seats, both score highly in terms of safety and both have their fair share of infotainment and driver assistance technologies. The Forester sports a more deluxe interior than the Equinox, however, and wins in terms of the size of its cargo bay, too. But compared to the Equinox, whose base price is $23,800, the Forester costs slightly more, starting at $24,800.

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Author
Shift Editorial Team