We have just received an all new 2010 Chevrolet Equinox into our Top Speed test fleet and it will certainly be interesting to try out the crossover that started the trend at GM. Crossovers are interesting vehicles, they utilize many of the same construction techniques as smaller cars, like unit body construction, transverse mounted engines and independent rear suspensions that allows owners to have the practicality of a truck while paying the gas bill of a car. That is mainly in part to our Equinox’s direct injected 3.0 Liter V6 engine that makes 264 HP and 222 lb-ft of torque and is connected to a fuel efficient six speed automatic transmission. Our car was an all wheel drive model, so it gets an EPA estimated 17 MPG in the city and 24 MPG on the highway, not bad for almost 100 cubic feet of passenger room. However, this particular Equinox is not the most efficient of the bunch, a front wheel drive 2.4 Liter direct injected four cylinder making 182 HP will get as much as 32 MPG on the highway, that is not far off from the government mandated 35 MPG Corporate Average Fuel Economy regulations.
Don’t let the numbers fool you, the Equinox is more than just a boring old gas sipper, it is also a very fun people mover full of high tech creature comforts on the inside and a couple of stylish touches on the outside. Our Equinox rides on optional 18 inch ten spoke machined aluminum wheels that give the CUV a much more rugged look, everything from 17 to 19 inch rims are available. Chevrolet’s design team also took great care in applying just the right amount of shiny chrome trim around the grill opening, fog light surround and window frames. The interior is dressed up with two tone leather chairs held together by red stitching, a theme that continues onto the door cards and steering wheel. Just like the seats, the dash features contrasting tones that really make it an attractive interior.
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The real beauty of this kind of vehicle are the electronic gadgets hidden inside that entertain passengers and make life easier for the driver. The oversized sunroof lets in enough light to brighten up any occasion and the power lift gate can be an invaluable tool when both arms are occupied holding onto brown paper grocery bags. One of the nicest features is that when you double click the key fob to unlock the doors, the Equinox will automatically lower all four windows, allowing fresh air to flow throughout the cabin. It is nice to see that our Equinox came equipped with a back up camera, and that the lines that turn with the steering wheel. The infotainment system consists of an AM/FM/XM radio with AUX and USB inputs, voice guided turn by turn navigation, 40 GB hard drive for storing tunes and a CD/DVD player that will feed images to some of the nicest factory rear seat entertainment setup with the flip up screens integrated into rear of front seats.
Stay tuned to Top Speed for a future review on the 2010 Chevrolet Equinox.