After a minor facelift last year that brought new styling and interior changes, the Equinox carries over into model year 2017 with only a few changes.
Chrome wheels disappear from the Equinox’s features list, while Nightfall Grey joins the range. A chrome grille trim is available on the base LS trim level, too.
Speaking of trims, the Equinox is available in LS, LT, and a new-in-name-only Premier trim. This replaces the LTZ moniker that’s being phased out; it’s already been implemented on the Cruze and Malibu.
Although the Canadian-made Equinox is the compact offering in Chevy’s range and priced to compete with the likes of the Honda CR-V or Mazda CX-5, it’s much closer to that of a mid-sized vehicle like the Ford Edge. That leg-up in size gives it a remarkable advantage when it comes to interior space thanks to a rear seat bench that both slides and reclines to maximize rear legroom or cargo space. With the rear seat in its most rearward position, the Equinox offers up 200 mm more rear legroom. With all the seats folded down, the Equinox has a handy 1,805 L of cargo space. A power tailgate with pre-selectable heights is available as an option.
Though the Equinox was recently updated, its cabin was effectively unchanged. Soft touch materials aren’t as prominently featured as they are in the latest Malibu, and the console is chock full of small buttons. The available MyLink infotainment system with 7.0-inch screen is easy to operate, and all trims include a Wi-Fi hotspot with 4G-LTE internet connectivity that up to seven devices can be connected to – a boon for placating little ones on long trips. The system isn’t the latest iteration and lacks Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, though Siri Eyes Free is included.
Chevy offers the Equinox with a choice of two powertrains. The standard engine across the board is a 2.4-litre direct-injected four-cylinder that produces 182 hp and 172 lb-ft of torque. It can be upgraded to a healthy 301-hp, 272 lb-ft of torque 3.6-litre V6, which is a valuable asset for those who tow or drive with a fully packed vehicle frequently. The four-cylinder is rated to tow 1,500 lbs; the V6 adds an extra 2,000 lbs of capacity. All use a six-speed automatic, and all trims come standard with front-wheel drive. All-wheel drive is an option.
All Equinox trims come standard with a reverse camera, which can be upgraded to include rear parking sensors, cross-traffic alert, and a blind-spot monitoring system on the LT with the Driver Confidence Package. Premier trim levels offer the Driver Confidence Package II which includes the above, plus forward collision warning, lane-departure warning.