2018 Chevrolet EquinoxShould you buy?
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What’s New for 2018?
The 2018 Chevrolet Equinox has very little in common with its predecessor, with the design moving to a smaller, lighter and more agile platform. This allows the new Equinox to offer much better performance, as well as newer technology. However, the new model is slightly smaller, and so offers less passenger and cargo room than the outgoing design.
Top 10 Reasons to Buy a 2018 Chevrolet Equinox – The Pros
1. Varied Engine Selection
As part of its move towards the compact crossover segment, the 2018 Chevrolet Equinox has given up its optional V-6, but the selection of four-cylinder engines it offers significantly expands its versatility. The base 1.5-liter turbo strikes a good balance between power and efficiency at 170 horsepower, which is relatively average for the segment. The optional 2.0-liter turbo is aimed at performance enthusiasts and gets up to 252 horsepower, matching or exceeding most cars it competes against. Finally, efficiency aficionados will enjoy the diesel engine that is also on offer.
2. Efficient Turbodiesel
The diesel engine gets its own shout-out because of how rare they are in the current automotive market, as well as its excellent economy statistics. In exchange for its 240 pound-feet of torque, it offers up to 40 miles per gallon on the highway, beating out the other top efficiency competitors in the compact crossover class.
3. Standard Technology and Infotainment
Chevrolet has placed a lot of emphasis on making its vehicles technology-friendly, and the 2018 Equinox is a good demonstration of that commitment. A large touch screen, USB ports, smartphone support and even in-car wireless internet are all standard on all Equinox models, which makes even a base Equinox a very good return on investment for a buyer that wants technology features on their next car.
4. Good Options Progression
In addition to offering a lot of features across its whole line, the 2018 Chevrolet Equinox designers have done a good job of spacing out their features and keeping price increases between trim lines reasonable, making each of the models an attractive buy. That not only gives each of the cars a good sense of value, but also makes it easy to find a good Equinox model that fits a particular budget.
5. Unique Denim Upholstery
Chevrolet went for a bold design gamble with the 2018 Equinox interior by offering a unique denim-style upholstery as the standard option instead of the more conventional cloth. That gamble paid off, as the material is not only attractive and comfortable, but memorable and unique as well.
6. Spacious Second Row
While the 2018 Chevrolet Equinox is slightly smaller than last year’s model, that has not reflected negatively on the passenger side of the cabin. The second row especially stands out among other compact SUVs as offering good headroom and legroom for even the tall passengers.
7. A Bright and Open Layout
The interior of the 2018 Chevrolet Equinox feels more open and lets more light in from the outside, making the inside of the car feel larger than it really is. The windows are well-positioned and the pillars are minimized for better lighting. The wrap-around rear window is also closer to the rear passengers thanks to the car’s smaller footprint, giving them more light as well.
8. Good Road Insulation
The 2018 Chevrolet Equinox does not have a very sporty suspension, and that is a good thing. The softly damped system insulates the passengers from road rumble very effectively, and bumps in the road are almost imperceptible, even at speed. That is true even with the larger wheels and narrow tires offered on the high-end Premier model.
9. Comfortable Handling
In addition to being comfortable to ride in, the Equinox also feels very easy to drive. The transmission has been tuned very well to match the turbocharged engines it is paired with, and it does a good job of keeping the driver from feeling any turbo lag. Just push down on the gas pedal and the car accelerates, just like with a regular gas engine! The steering responds well to force, and provides solid feedback that makes it easy to judge the car’s capabilities.
10. High-end Safety Options
The usual advanced safety equipment is easily found on the new Equinox, but it also adds a few advanced features from the luxury spec sheet to its options. It can be equipped with an optional 360-degree camera, which projects views from all around the car you the touchscreen on the center console, or automatic high beams, which switch to low beams when they detect an oncoming vehicle and back up to high beams once it passes, all without any driver input.
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Reasons Not to Buy a 2018 Chevrolet Equinox – The Cons
1. A Basic Interior
While the denim upholstery enhances the appearance of the low-end Equinox models, the rest of the interior feels very bland on all but the top Premium trim line. That detracts from the improvements Chevrolet made in the lighting and layout, and could turn off some buyers.
2. Small Cargo Area
While the 2018 Equinox is smaller than its predecessor without cutting into passenger space too much, the adjustment came at the expense of the cargo area. At 29.9 cubic feet behind the second row, it is significantly smaller than most competitors.
3. Limited Availability
The two optional engines are one of the major selling points for the 2018 Equinox, but they will only become available later in the model year, with all of the early models equipped exclusively with the standard 1.5-liter engine. That means that anyone looking for better performance or efficiency will have to either wait, or look at a different vehicle.
How It Stacks up to the Competition
As a compact SUV, the 2018 Chevrolet Equinox faces a crowded field of competitors, including exceptional vehicles like the Ford Escape or the Honda CR-V. The Escape handles better than the Equinox and has more cargo room, but has less standard technology features and a less user-friendly infotainment system. The Equinox also has better standard technology than the CR-V, as well as coming in at a lower base price, though the CR-V’s interior is more well-rounded.
The full redesign of the 2018 Chevrolet Equinox brought a lot of changes to this crossover, but had an overall positive result. The new Equinox is a spacious and inviting compact with a sophisticated array of technical features, both optional and standard, at a very reasonable price. For car shoppers looking for these traits, the new Chevrolet Equinox is the perfect buy.
• Why buy a 2017 Chevrolet Equinox? w/ pros vs cons