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2017 Chevrolet Equinox Overview
Though most in the automotive media expected the Chevrolet Equinox to be all-new for 2017, it has received only a few minor upgrades for the upcoming model year, with an anticipated comprehensive redesign due for 2018. However, this 5-door 5-passenger compact crossover still offers family-friendly dependability, affordability, and all-around competence, despite few changes from the current version.
The 2017 Equinox will return in the base L trim, the up-featured LS, and the sport-oriented LT. New for 2017 is a top-shelf Premier trim, which, in keeping with Chevy’s current brand-wide marketing shuffle, takes the place of the old LTZ.
All 2017 Equinox trims will be offered with standard front-wheel drive (FWD), while the LS and higher variants remain eligible for available full-time all-wheel drive (AWD) that can handle wintry weather but can’t match Jeep’s rival Cherokee crossover for off-road prowess.
Look for a new exterior color, Nightfall Gray Metallic, to debut, along with a couple of new options packages, the Midnight Package and the Sport Package, each of which is available exclusively on the LT trim. The Midnight Package boasts Mosaic Black Metallic exterior paint, Jet Black perforated leather upholstery, memory for driver settings, 18-inch aluminum 5-spoke black-painted wheels, and a black-accented grille and rear fascia. The Sport Package includes a Summer White exterior paint job plus everything that’s included with the Midnight Package. Additionally, a new fleet-only equipment group (2FL) will boast upgrades that mirror the standard features aboard the Equinox LT.
Powering the 2017 Equinox is 182-hp 2.4-liter inline 4-cylinder (I4) engine. Look for 172 lb-ft of torque under the management of a 6-speed shiftable automatic transmission, with EPA-estimated mileage expected to remain 22 mpg city/32 highway/26 combined in FWD versions, while AWD trims return at 20/29/23. Note that a couple of reviewers have been hard-pressed to match those fuel-efficiency figures in real-world driving situations.
The 2017 Equinox LT and Premier offer an available 3.6-liter V6 engine that’ll put out 301 hp and 272 lb-ft of torque. Look for this optional V6 to pair with the 6-speed shiftable automatic transmission, with mileage at 17/24/20 with FWD and 16/23/18 with AWD. Towing capacity is expected to remain at 1,500 pounds for the I4 and 3,500 pounds for the V6.
Look for standard bling aboard the 2017 Equinox to include 17-inch alloy wheels on the L and LS and 18-inch aluminum wheels on the LT and Premier trim (which seem to be something of a downgrade from the chrome aluminum wheels standard on the current LT and LTZ). Other exterior features should include heated power-adjustable mirrors and upgraded exterior chrome, with V6 trims also boasting firmer suspension tuning.
Inside, the 2017 Equinox is slated to offer standard cloth or leather upholstery, a power-adjustable driver’s seat, heated front seats, full power accessories, cruise control, and telescoping tilt-wheel steering. Lower Equinox trims will again sport manual air conditioning, while the Premier adds automatic climate control. The LS and higher trims will again boast a rear-view camera, with the LT and Premier editions each adding standard rear parking sensors.
Technology aboard the 2017 Equinox is slated to include OnStar directions and connections features and Bluetooth-interfaced telematics with a 4G LTE WiFi hotspot. Look for higher-level Equinox trims to boast upgraded smartphone apps. A standard 80-watt CD/MP3 player with 6 speakers and an auxiliary audio input comes standard, while higher trims add satellite radio, Chevy’s MyLink audio interface, Bluetooth audio, and internet radio service.
Total cargo area in the 2017 Equinox is expected to remain pegged at 63.7 cubic feet with the rear seats folded down.
As noted, a couple of new option packages debut in the 2017 Equinox LT, while lower trims can be expected to remain eligible for a number of options that come standard aboard higher trims. Further trim-specific options include a power sunroof, a power-opening rear liftgate, GPS navigation, and a premium Pioneer audio system with 8 speakers.
Look for standard safety equipment aboard the upcoming year’s Equinox crossover to include 4-wheel antilock brakes (ABS), traction and stability control, front side-mounted airbags, front and rear head-curtain airbags, daytime running lights (LED in upper-level trims), OnStar emergency alerts and communications, and a post-collision safety system. Higher Equinox trims also feature standard front fog/driving lights and optional blind-spot monitoring, lane-departure warnings, forward collision alert, and rear cross-traffic alert. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) gives the current Equinox 4 out of 5 stars for overall crash-worthiness, while the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) gives the crossover a top overall score of Good.
Look for the 2017 Equinox to go on sale during the third quarter of 2016, competing with the likes of the Hyundai Santa Fe Sport, Ford Escape, Mazda CX-5, and Jeep Cherokee.
Have Laptop. Will Travel. I'm retired and travelling the country in a 34' motor home. I'm really digging meeting people . . and sometimes their cars . . . getting a sense of what makes this nation tick. The plan is to visit all the national parks in the continental US, then cruise to Alaska to visit Denali, and to Hawaii to check out Haleakala and the Hawaii Volcano's national parks. Anyhow, when I'm not horsing the motor home around the roadways, I'm tooting around in the 2012 Ford Focus that we tow behind, or making runs to Home Depot and various malls with the 2004 F-150 that just won't die.
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