- Solid base engine
- Denim-like fabric is surprisingly comfortable
- Lighter, brighter, and smarter
- A fuel-efficient turbodiesel coming
- Still hard plastics abound
- Not as fuel-efficient as some
- Safety features reserved for top trims
- Smaller rear cargo area
The 2018 Chevrolet Equinox is a needed step forward for the brand and a solid compact crossover.
Chevrolet did a lot right with the 2018 Equinox. The new small crossover is lighter, smaller, more aggressively styled, better equipped across the board, and is generally a more complete, competent vehicle than anything to wear the Equinox badge.
New for this year, the 2018 Chevrolet Equinox will be offered in L, LS, LT, and Premier trims. It went on sale at the end of March.
The Equinox earned a 6.6 on our overall scale, which reflects our preference for the new body and its good fuel economy. The score will likely change when official safety data rolls in, so stay tuned to this space as we wait for those scores. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
By shaving 400 pounds of fat and cutting 5 inches between the wheels, the new Equinox looks more like a true contender to the Honda CR-V, Ford Escape, and Toyota RAV4, rather than a plus-size entry among fiercely competent crossover competition. But beneath this smaller, svelter body is a smarter vehicle.
Turbochargers supplant a bigger engine in the Equinox, and promise torque that’s easy to exploit and fuel economy that challenges the segment’s best. Drivers can pair their Apple iPhone or Android smartphone with a standard 4G LTE wi-fi connection and suck tunes from the internet, which are channeled through the audio system that is controlled by a standard 7.0-inch infotainment system. HID headlamps illuminate the road, while vented seats blast the driver’s backside with cool air. All around, this is a better, more complete Equinox than came before.
And yet, there are still problems. The smaller body has less cargo space than the competition and the cabin is at least a step behind the competition in material quality and style. The fascia is polarizing, the rear end looks like a minivan, and cutting-edge safety equipment is limited to the range-topping trim, which is itself way too expensive. The Equinox is better and smarter, but it’s not as good or as smart as it needs to be.