Chevy redesigned the popular Equinox for the 2018 model year and the new version is definitely the step in the right direction. The all-new Equinox ups the ante with the trio of the turbocharged four-cylinder engines including the turbo diesel unit. However, downsizing trend also affected the body of the model as well as the wheelbase. Add to that the new platform and the new Equinox is much lighter and compact but the interior space is pretty much the same.
However, buyers will find more refinement in the interior design and loads of the new technology including plenty of advanced safety features. The styling of the model is sharper and that can also be said for the model’s steering and handling. The model is already on the sale in L, LS, LT and Premier trims. The buyers will also choose between the two-wheel drive and 2018 Chevy Equinox AWD.
2018 Chevy Equinox AWD: Sharper Styling, Lighter Structure
The third-generation Equinox is a new from the ground up. The model sits on the Opel-designed platform known as D2XX which also underpins the Buick Envision and GMC Terrain. The platform uses modern lightweight materials and joining techniques. The result is much improved structure rigidity and as the benefit comes better driving dynamics. The lightweight materials, smaller proportions and lighter engine lineup also contribute to the significant weight reduction of around 400 pounds. The model is also 4.7 inches shorter and wheelbase measures 5.2 inches less.
Styling wise, the model adopts brand’s latest design language. The front fascia has the grille and headlight style similar as on brand’s sedans. The grille forms the single shape but the lower portion has chrome frame.
The creases on the hood look nice and sculpted front bumper also fits nicely to model’s new face. The profile also features nice character line which splits into two in front of the front door handles. One line continues toward taillights while other bends toward wheel arches.
The rear side has not so interesting design. The wraparound rear glass connects steeply raked D-Pillars and model has nice taillights.
The cabin of the new Equinox doesn’t suffer from the significant wheelbase slashing. The passengers will feel comfortable in all rows and will have enough head and legroom. However, the cargo space with 29.9 cu ft will be in segment’s lower area. If the rear seats are out of the function the cargo room expands to 63.5 cu ft.
On the other hand, the interior will have plenty of the plastic surfaces except you pick the range-topping Premiere trim which features standard leather upholstery. The overall comfort will, however, be great as well as sound insulation. Chevy’s MyLink infotainment system will also be the highlight of the model. It will provide smartphone support in every trim level and will feature intuitive interface. The base screen version is 7-inch unit while grows to 8 inches in the LT trim version.
The base L trim includes 17-inch alloys, heated mirrors, keyless entry and ignition, tilt-and-telescopic-steering wheel, etc. The LS will offer all-wheel drive. For the power driver seat, sunroof, power liftgate, dual-zone climate control, heated front seats and more you will have to upgrade to the LT version. The top Premiere model will add 18-inch wheels, perforated leather upholstery, wireless charging, ambient lighting, etc.
As for the safety, the model will offer plenty of advanced safety features. The list will include forward collision warning, low-speed braking, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, rear parking assist, surround view, but not an adaptive cruise control.
2018 Chevy Equinox AWD: Performance
The new 2018 Chevy Equinox AWD will rely on the trio of turbocharged four-cylinder engines. The entry level engine is a new 1.5-liter turbocharged inline-4 which comes in the place of the old 2.4-liter unit. This small turbo provides 170 hp at 5600 rpm and torque reaches 203 lb-ft from 2000 to 4000 rpm. This engine comes in the combination with the six-speed automatic. Don’t expect much from this engine but will accelerate and sound better than the old 2.4-liter unit.
However, the new Equinox will also offer a more powerful 2.0-liter turbo unit. Combined with the nine-speed automatic this engine will provide significant power upgrade to 250 hp and torque of 260 lb-ft. If the fuel economy would be your priority, then leave the room for the 1.6-liter turbo diesel engine. It will produce 137 hp and torque of 240 lb-ft. The six-speed automatic is again in the combination.
The base engine combined with the all-wheel drive will provide 26 mpg combined. The diesel arrives later in the game and it should hit 40 mpg on the freeway with the two-wheel drive. We will see what ratings will provide the all-wheel drive diesel. On the other hand, the 2.0-liter turbo will return 24 mpg combined when coupled with the four-wheel drive.
2018 Chevy Equinox AWD: Availability, Price
The 2018 Chevy Equinox AWD has been on the sale since the end of March. However, you can buy only the base engine-powered versions while other two power option will join later in the year. The all-wheel drive models are available from around $25, 900. For the Premiere all-wheel drive starting point is from $35, 330.