Archive for October 2017

2018 Chevrolet Equinox Premier 1.5T AWD

Overview

General Motors has a rich portfolio of SUV’s and crossovers across its brands from Chevrolet to Cadillac, Buick and GMC. And the Equinox is still a vitally important product within the multitude of models. Compact SUV’s and crossovers are the most important sector in North America and it matters to have a competitive product. The Ingersoll-Ontario-built 2018 Equinox (worth mentioning for me as a Canadian) is now a better vehicle in almost every aspect and find a better place in bestsellers list.

It’s not as though this particular Chevy is an underdog: Though it isn’t the top seller in the ultra-competitive compact crossover segment.

This third-generation version sheds about 180 kilograms of weight to become a leaner, more responsive and economical vehicle. And this weight loss comes also with new engines.

Driving Impressions

Our test vehicle had the top-of-the-line Premier package with the base 1.5-litre turbo four mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. Although I had some hesitation with this engine before driving, 170 horsepower and 203 pound-feet of torque, feel good and sufficient for daily driving. You do not feel underpowered due to the “on-demand” power reserves of the turbo and well-calibrated transmission. With 1,605 kg, this crossover is within the limits of the compact class and the AWD system, which is disconnected from the rear axle when not in use, comes as a bonus.

In a mixed mode driving in the city and highway, we calculated an average consumption of 8.6 liters. This did not include more than four passengers at one time and we did not tow anything.

Inside and Outside The Car

The Equinox is definitely not a trailblazer in terms of design. It simply creates more excitement than its predecessor but conservative inside and out.

The cabin and the instrument cluster is well-crafted with quality materials except the lower parts, with the lower-quality plastics. The reconfigurable information display front and centre, the eight-inch centre console touchscreen, with clearly marked icons for a variety of functions, including the latest connectivity technologies — MyLink infotainment systems designed to support Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as well as an available OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot create a functional “working environment” with high-tech but not-distracting features. With front safety belts not adjustable in height, I ask myself if this was an oversight or cost-saving at the wrong place.

Heated seats and a remote starter are standard on all trims. The Premier trim has features as dual-zone automatic climate control, keyless entry, power windows, door locks and liftgate, power heated outside mirrors, rear park assist, rear cross-traffic alert, blind-zone alert and rear-view camera.

As for cargo capacity, the Chevy’s “kneeling” rear seats — the bottom cushions tilt forward when the split-folding seatbacks are lowered —enables a flat rear load floor with up to 1,798L of space, including 846L behind the back seat. Among all thse features, iti is surprising to see that the middle rear head restraint is missing.

Conclusion

The redesigned Equinox deserves to be a new generation vehicle in terms of fuel efficiency, smooth ride, better handling, up-level interior and competitive pricing. It remains to be seen if these features will be game-changers against established competitors such as the Toyota RAV4, Honda CR-V, Nissan Rogue and Ford Escape.

Type of vehicle: Compact SUV
Engine: 1.5L DOHC, Turbo
Transmission: 6-speed, automatic
Price (base/as tested): $34,195 / $40,490
Destination charge: CAD 1,700
Natural Resources Canada fuel economy (L/100 km): 9.8 city; 7.9 highway

Optional features

Tru North Edition: $5,965  Low speed forward automatic braking, surround vision, forward collision alert, lane departure warning, intellibeam automatic high-beam control, driver safety alert seat, 8-way power passenger seat, lane departure warning, power sunroof, 19″ UItra-Bright machined aluminium wheels, Bose speaker system, HD radio, automatic climate control, heated rear seats, heated steering wheel, wireless charging, auto dimming inside mirror, clout driver information centre, driver express up&down power window)

True North Edition credit: -1,965

 

Total Price as Tested: $40,490

Article: Varol McKars

Pictures: Varol McKars, Basak McKars

Test vehicle was provided by Chevrolet Canada (via BHG Media Fleet)

For the most up-to-date and more detailed information, visit:

www.chevrolet.ca

Article: Varol McKars

Pictures: Varol McKars, Basak McKars

Test vehicle was provided by GMC Canada (via BHG Media Fleet)

For the most up-to-date and more detailed information, visit:

www.chevrolet.ca

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