Technically, the 2015 Chevrolet Equinox competes against compact SUVs like the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, and Ford Escape. Like those, it seats five, and thanks to its considerably bigger dimensions, it offers up a roomy back seat. The compromise is with cargo space, where the Equinox falls short of even its smaller compact competitors. Behind the wheel, the Equinox isn't particularly exciting, but it does offer up a comfortable and quiet ride. It's also one of the only compact crossover SUVs to offer a V6 engine, a 301-horsepower 3.6-liter V6 that lets the Equinox tow up to 3,500 pounds. Fuel-conscious buyers will be more interested in the 4-cylinder version, which claims a competitive 32 mpg.
You'll Like This Car If...
If you haul rear-seat passengers more often than you fill the cargo area in your compact SUV, then you might want to give the 2015 Chevy Equinox a look. The ability to tow 3,500 pounds in V6 models is shoulders above most competitors.
You May Not Like This Car If...
Despite its large exterior dimensions, the 2015 Chevrolet Equinox doesn't offer very much cargo space. If you need to haul more stuff, check out something like the Honda CR-V. If you need more passenger space, but don't want a bulky vehicle, a Kia Sorento could be a good choice.
The 2015 Chevy Equinox is virtually identical to last year's model. The only notable change is 4G connectivity through OnStar, plus the ability to share that connection with other devices through onboard Wi-Fi.
Driving the Equinox
If you're a fan of a quiet and comfortable highway ride, then you're going to love the Chevy Equinox. The relative quiet gives this Chevy the feel of a more...
... expensive vehicle, and that's just fine with us. However, otherwise the Equinox is pretty straightforward on the road. The more powerful engine doesn't exactly slingshot this SUV, and even the 2.0-liter turbo 4-cylinder in the Ford Escape feels quicker. Blame weight: The V6 Equinox weighs nearly two tons, and the 4-cylinder models aren't much lighter, but at least they improve on fuel economy. Still, despite competitors like the Mazda CX-5, which enjoys a twisty back road now and then, the compact SUV market isn't exactly a hotbed of driving excitement anyhow. Instead, you'll likely enjoy the ride, features and roomy back seat over long hauls.
ADJUSTABLE POWER LIFTGATE Power liftgates are nothing new. However, they can be a mixed blessing, as it's all too easy to accidentally hit whatever's above the door, possibly damaging it. The optional power liftgate on 2LT models and standard in the top-line LTZ trim has an adjustable height setting to avoid overhead collisions.
REAR-SEAT LEGROOM If the 2015 Chevy Equinox has an ace up its sleeve, it's rear-seat room. With 39.9 inches of legroom, and a back seat that slides, the Equinox has plenty of space for passengers to stretch out. Not to mention, it makes installing a child seat that much easier.
2015 Chevrolet Equinox Details
Despite being comfortable and versatile, the Equinox doesn't make the best use of its exterior bulk inside. For example, even though the Honda CR-V is nearly 10 inches shorter, it boasts roughly six more cubic feet of storage behind the rear seat. The flip side of that is passenger seating, and here the Chevy Equinox shines. With well-bolstered seats, front and back and lots of legroom for all passengers, it's easy to get comfortable, even with a full load of people. The high-quality interior is attractive overall, but marred by too many buttons and small dials.
The 2015 Equinox is surprisingly big. In fact, at more than 187 inches, it's actually longer than a Ford Edge or the 3-row Kia Sorento, both of which fall into the midsize-SUV category. However, the soft curves of the sheet metal balance the overall boxy shape, making the Equinox look a little smaller than it is. Higher-end models feature body-colored mirrors and roof rails. Seventeen-inch wheels are standard, with 18-inch and 19-inch versions available.
The base 2015 Chevrolet Equinox LS comes with a 6-speed automatic transmission, cruise control, a trial of GM's OnStar service that includes 4G connectivity and Wi-Fi, and safety features like traction control, electronic stability control, and multiple airbags, including those for rear outboard passengers. If you move up to the mid-level LT model – a better bet in our opinion – you get a standard rearview camera, heated outside mirrors, a roof-mounted luggage rack, and overall nice trim. The top-level LTZ gets leather seats, a power front passenger seat, a power tailgate, lane-departure warning and forward-collision alert.
All-wheel drive (AWD) is an option on all Equinox models, including the base LS, but if you want V6 power you'll have to move up to the LT or LTZ models. The LS is pretty stripped down, and stays that way. But the LT has plenty of options to keep you busy, including a lot of things that are available on the LTZ like lane-departure warning and forward-collision alert. You can also get navigation, an upscale Pioneer audio system, and a sunroof. A rear-seat entertainment package with DVD player with dual screens and two wireless headphones can keep kids occupied.
Under the Hood
Standard issue on the 2015 Chevy Equinox is a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder with 182 horsepower. "Adequate" is probably the best way to describe its ability to haul the 3,700-pound SUV. If you're looking at an LT or LTZ, a 3.6-liter V6 with 301 horsepower is available, and it does a better job hauling the Equinox, but it's still not a speed demon. Either engine comes with a 6-speed automatic transmission, and both run on regular gasoline. If you need to tow, the V6 is the better choice thanks to its 3,500-pound capacity. Front-wheel drive (FWD) is standard with either engine, with all-wheel drive an option for those who want a little extra peace of mind on slippery roads.
Buy a bigger vehicle, pay a bigger price. The 2015 Chevrolet Equinox starts at about $25,000, more than you'd pay for a base-model Honda CR-V. Step up to the LT1 or LT2 and you'll pay about $27,000 and $28,000, respectively. Top-line LTZ models start at about $32,500. If you want all-wheel drive, you're going to pay about $1,700 extra, and the V6 engine adds about $1,400. By comparison, the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4 and Ford Escape have starting prices below that of the Equinox, while the Kia Sportage starts under $20,000, well below the Chevy. To make sure you're getting the best deal, check the Kelley Blue Book Fair Purchase Price below. In terms of resale value, the Equinox is expected to hold up well against most rivals, but below the strong residual values of the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4 and Kia Sportage.
Pros: "Stylish, perfect size, easy transition from a car"
Cons: "No rear air vents"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"For the most part, I truly enjoy my Equinox. I purchased it shortly after my son turned 2. We upgraded from a Honda Civic so that he would have some room to grow. The vehicle is easy to enter and exit. It does not have the get up that my Civic did and that did take some getting used to but it has alot more to it also. I love my backup camera and the layout of the dashboard. The trunk space is good too. My only real complaint is that the back seat is very hard to cool. Chevy has put rear vents into their 3 row Traverse, but they should have considered them for the Equinox. I can be freezing in the front and the back seat will still be warm. And that is not good in this TEXAS heat."
Pros: "Good size, comfortable to drive, nice dash layout"
Cons: "MPG lower than advertised, Too many recalls/SBs"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"I bought the vehicle new in July 2009 when they first came to the market. Like the style. It has a good insurance rating, so rates are reasonable. Interior is nicely designed, especially front seat travel for a big guy. The adjustable rear seats are also nice whether you're carrying people or cargo. The cargo area is a bit small but not a big problem for me. The vehicle was the subject of a few recalls/service bulletins. Fortunately the repairs were done at GM's cost and were resolved satisfactorily. GM also extended the warranty on some components to 100K in the event a problem arises. Just invested in my first set of tires 75K, so I plan to keep the vehicle awhile longer."
Cons: "ugly inside and out. not fun to drive. cheap plasti"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 3
"Note that I have had 3 of this model since 2010 as leased company vehicles. I keep each car until 70,000 miles and about every 18 months. I can honestly say I've never had a mechanical issue or breakdown with any of the vehicles.The six speaker sound system is excellent and blue tooth streaming very good. That being said, here the compliments end.
My thoughts and comments have been expressed by other reviewers.
If your looking for crossover forget the Equinox. My wife has a 2010 Mazda CX7. We would take on trips as it is a better car
Exterior is ok.The Mazda CX7 is sportier. Roll down the Windows, especially the back, road noise or should I say car noise is unbearable. Rides can be bumpy. Driving is uninspiring and is not fun putting on 70,000 over 18 months. All of mine clunk when gears change. Pickup is poor. The 4 cylinder engine has no power with the weight of this vehicle. During the winter a police officer pushed me up a steep hill after I got stuck by another vehicle having trouble in front of me. Note that other vehicles were doing just fine.
The cloth seats are without doubt, the ugliest I have had in any vehicle, stain easily and are uncomfortable. Car fogs up terribly unlike any other vehicle I have driven over the past 27 years as a professional driver. Communication via Bluetooth is fair. Many calls between identical vehicles get dropped
To sum the Equinox up. Don't buy it. The Mazda CX7 is much better for less. My new 2015 Nissa Sentra, fully loaded is better than either."