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2011 Chevrolet Equinox

Overview
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2011 Chevrolet Equinox Review

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With the cost of everything from oil to steel on the rise, the growing popularity of smaller, fuel-efficient vehicles is also trending upward. We all know how much Americans love their SUVs, so when Chevrolet introduced the Equinox, a smaller, less-expensive and more fuel-efficient version of the traditional SUV, its acceptance among buyers seemed a no-brainer. The 2011 Chevrolet Equinox continues to raise the bar in a segment dominated by such heavyweights as the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4 and Ford Escape. With newcomers Hyundai and Kia now stepping up their game as well, the Equinox will clearly have its work cut out to keep pace. But, GM seems determined to keep this vehicle relevant, a fact born out by the continuing improvements made to the 2011 model.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you prefer bold styling over bland, cutting edge audio and navigation over gutless four speaker systems, and class-leading 32-mpg highway fuel economy, Chevrolet has built a crossover utility vehicle for you.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you need the capability afforded by a third-row seat, the 2011 Chevrolet Equinox will take a back seat to competitors such as the Toyota RAV4, Mitsubishi Outlander and Hyundai Santa Fe.

What's Significant About This Car?

The 2011 Chevrolet Equinox gains a FlexFuel (E85) compatible V6 engine option, as well as some new standard features. The mid-level Chevrolet Equinox 2LT gains standard heated front seats, while Chevrolet Equinox 1LT now feature Bluetooth, a USB port and a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls.

Driving the Equinox

Driving Impressions If the 2011 Chevrolet Equinox has one strong suit, it's the vehicle's quiet and comfortable interior. For those who prefer frugality over fury, the standard four-cylinder engine will surprise with...

its strong acceleration and quiet operation. Aided by an innovative six-speed automatic transmission, the 182-horsepower four-cylinder not only moves with some authority, it delivers impressive fuel economy as well. The 264-horsepower V6, available on all except the base model, brings greater power for passing and merging, but it is not the strongest V6 in the segment. That honor still belongs to the Toyota RAV4. The Chevrolet Equinox's ice-blue ambient lighting and available perforated leather seats make you forget you're not in a luxury crossover. Finding a comfortable position behind the wheel is a breeze thanks to the tilt and telescoping steering wheel and power adjustable seat. The Equinox's sliding rear seats make it easy for rear seat passenger s to get comfortable, especially those with long legs.

Height-adjustable Tailgate
If you have low garage clearance or limited vertical reach, you can program the tailgate to open to only a safe or reachable height.

Rear-seat Entertainment
This is an option we think more vehicles in the class should offer. In the 2011 Chevy Equinox, the system features two independent seat-back-mounted screens on which one rear passenger can watch a DVD movie while the other plays a (self-supplied) video game, for instance.

2011 Chevrolet Equinox Details
Interior

Although the new Hyundai Santa Fe and Kia Sorento come awfully close, we think the 2011 Chevrolet Equinox has the freshest, most visually eye catching interior in the segment. While we can find fault with some of the plastics and trim pieces, the overall execution is first rate, especially when equipped with the two-tone Jet Black/Brownstone leather seating option. But, the Equinox's interior improvements go beyond mere good looks. There is a lot of room, utility and just plain thoughtfulness here, as well. Four-cylinder models, for example, use active noise cancellation (a system that cancels out sound waves with counteracting sound waves) to keep the cabin quiet. Further evidence can be found with the back seats that slide forward a full eight inches, creating an even larger area for cargo (or the family dog).

Exterior

What we like most about the 2011 Chevrolet Equinox is that it doesn't try to look like a downsized Suburban. From its elegant oversized headlamps, to its two-bar grille and "floating" fog lamp bezels, to its sharp creased fender flares, the Chevrolet Equinox looks more like an overgrown exotic wagon rather than a small SUV. We like all the trims, but are especially partial to the top-of-the-line Equinox LTZ, with its available 19-inch aluminum alloy wheels, power liftgate and chrome door handles, and roof rack trim. And, despite its tall appearance, the 2011 Chevrolet Equinox is as easy to step in and out of as a standard family sedan.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

All models have a six-speed automatic transmission, while an "eco" mode on models with the four-cylinder engine alters shift points to improve fuel economy. Safety and convenience are enhanced with standard OnStar, while XM Satellite Radio provides added entertainment value. The "smart" remote start feature, standard on Chevrolet Equinox 2LT and Equinox LTZ trims, also activates the heating and air conditioning.

Optional Equipment

The 2011 Chevy Equinox offers a rear-seat DVD entertainment system and a power liftgate, both of which are uncommon in the category. Other notable options include 264-horsepower V6 engine, all-wheel drive, a navigation system, comprehensive premium audio system, remote vehicle start, backup camera, leather seating, heated front seats, and a memory-enabled driver's seat and mirror.

Under the Hood

Every 2011 Chevrolet Equinox includes a fuel-efficient, 182-horsepower, four-cylinder engine as standard equipment, and all but the entry LS trim level offers the upgrade to the 264-horsepower V6 for $1,500. The engines feature direct injection technology and are matched with six-speed automatic transmissions, both of which simultaneously increase power and efficiency. Four-cylinder versions offer an "Eco" button that sets the engine and transmission programming to mileage-maxing mode. The optional V6 is E85 compatible and offers manual shift control, although we felt it could be more responsive. The four- and six-cylinder versions feature tow ratings of 1,500 and 3,500 pounds respectively.

2.4-liter in-line 4
182 horsepower @ 6700 rpm
172 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4900 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/32 (FWD) 20/29 (AWD)

3.0-liter V6
264 horsepower @ 6950 rpm
222 lb.-ft. of torque @ 5100 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/24 (FWD), 12/18 (FWD, E85), 16/22 (AWD), 12/17 (AWD, E85)

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2011 Chevrolet Equinox Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
7.8
Out of 10

Based on 417 Ratings for the 2010 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.1/10
    Quality
    8.0/10
  • Reliability
    8.4/10
    Performance
    7.9/10
  • Comfort
    8.5/10
    Styling
    8.5/10

Not recommended

By on Saturday, February 28, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 42,000

10 5.0
overall rating 5 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
5/10
Value
6/10
Reliability
6/10
Quality
4/10
Performance
5/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "Looks good and nice interior,"

Cons: "AC/Heat; Traction; 4cyl.; working with On Star;"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 4

"4 Cyl is too weak and the gas savings are not enough to make this a good choice. Poor in snow or slippery road conditions. OnStar too hard to deal with and do not work well with previously owned cars. AC/Heat is inadequate."

Economical, good value

By on Thursday, February 26, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 26,575

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Easy to park, no blind spots when backing up."

Cons: "None so far"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"My 2012 LT has performed flawlessly, and filled my needs for economical transportation. The 4 cylinder engine is not one you would drag race with, however, it has ample power when needed. With the rear seats folded down, there is plenty of room for cargo."

Absolutely the worst purchase in my lifetime.

By on Wednesday, February 25, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 103,000

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
3/10
Reliability
5/10
Quality
2/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "has great acceleration for a 4 banger."

Cons: "I paid over $20,000.00 for this car."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"This vehicle has been in the repair shop 9 times since i purchased it in 2013. This year already I have had it in for 2 seperate issues. They have had it in there service department for 28 days . 2 weeks total in January 2015 , and has been in there now for 14 more this month so far they still have it so i am guessing probably another 5 days."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Great Crossover

By on Wednesday, February 25, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 25,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great handling, good value, very comfortable."

Cons: "In-city gas mileage."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought this Equinox new with the V-6 engine so that I could tow my motorcycle trike whenever I wanted. I have not been sorry! I drove to the east coast and back pulling the trike and I didn't even know it was behind me. The Euqinox has all the power I need and it is is very comfortable and a real pleasure to drive. My wife loves it too. On a daily basis she drives it more than I do cause I ride my trike and she has never had a complaint about the vehicle. The gas milage for a V-6 is well within expected levels. In short, I'd recommend an Equinox to anyone."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Love my Equinox!

By on Thursday, February 19, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 20,700

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Beautiful in snow, great on gas, lots of room"

Cons: "Remote starter turns off after only 10 minutes."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"This is the first new car I have bought in 20 years, and I Love it! I live in Michigan, lots of snow and have not missed one day of work because of it. I'm so glad I didn't get the 4WD, front wheel drive is perfect. The only thing that I have not been happy with is the remote start. It automatically turns off after 10 minutes. In our cold state this is not enough time to warm my car up. I have asked the dealership to change increase the run time, they have told me that for safety reasons they do not do that. I know my daughters remote start will run much longer, so I know it' possible."

4 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Great Vehicle

By on Tuesday, February 10, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 45,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great look. Terrific ride. Great value."

Cons: "Expensive to fix and not as good of MPG as rated."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"This is a great vehicle. On paper it says this car gets 20-29 mpg, but I can tell you we have never gotten that kind of MPG while driving this. I am getting around 18 mpg right now which is still great for an AWD crossover. It is a very sleek looking car and most people get in and love the two tone leather inside. I would highly suggest this to someone looking for a nice riding cross over."

19 people out of 36 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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