With the first days of Fall now upon us, Chevrolet has chosen to celebrate the occasion by unveiling the 2018 Equinox.
Visually the Equinox benefits from a major redesign that adds newfound levels of freshness to the design. Wheras the current model featured a more restrained look that was starting to show its age, this new suit of clothes allows the Equinox to fall in line with its brand mates, and the new design language that Chevrolet is currently using.
The front fascia for example features a two piece radiator grille that is framed by bold chrome trim. Elongated headlights add more boldness to the package, and its side profile benefits from new sculpting. Overall its a look that is much more upscale, and should stand out more versus its bland predecessor.
The interior of the 2018 Equinox has also seen a major overhaul and incorporates many technologies that have made their debut in other Chevy products including the latest iteration of the MyLink infotainment system as well as better plastics.
It will be interesting to see if base models will ditch the mesh style coverings for the seats, and embrace a more traditional material. Having spent considerable time in the 2012 model that does hauling duty here at the office, it’s very annoying when rogue buttons and snaps snag on the holes.
Meanwhile Chevy engineers have removed 400 lbs of excess weight from the platform, while also shaving four inches of length, which allows the 2018 version to measure in at 183 inches long with width and height ringing in at 75 and 65 inches respectively. This downsizing effort also means that there will no longer be any naturally aspirated engines avalible. Instead, buyers will choose from three diffrent turbocharged four cylinder engines with the Malibu’s 170 horsepower 1.5 liter turbocharged four cylinder serving as the base engine. Most buyers however will gravitate towards the 2.0 liter turbocharged four cylinder which is good for 252 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque.
Lastly buyers can also choose to add a 2.0 liter turbodiesel engine to their Equinox purchase. Chevrolet has never offered a diesel engine before on the Equinox, and the brand freely admitted that the addition of this model was an effort to lure disgruntled TDI owners away from Volkswagen stores. Good for 136 horsepower, the new engine boasts an impressive 40 mpg on the freeway, and aims to be the green Equinox choice.
The diesel engine and the base 1.5 liter engine send their muscle through a six speed automatic transmission with the 2.0 liter featuring a nine speed automatic transmission. Like before front wheel drive is standard fare but can be swapped out for all wheel drive.
Safety was also at the forefront when engineers were developing this latest Equinox. This includes optional equipment such as a surround view camera, forward collision alert, lane keeping assist, and low speed automatic braking. In addition the 2018 Equinox also features GM’s rear seat reminder technology that sounds audible and visual warnings if a child is left in the back seat. First appearing in the GMC Acadia, the system is part of the company’s ongoing efforts to reduce overheating deaths caused by children being left in hot cars.
Look for the 2018 Equinox to go on sale during the first part of next year with the model covering the auto show circuit prior to its launch. Pricing information will be released closer to its on sale date, but Chevrolet says that the new Equinox will reach 115 global markets by the end of 2017.