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October 21, 2016
By Mario Cywinski


General Motors invited journalists from Canada and the United States for the global reveal of the Canadian-built 2018 Chevrolet Equinox in Chicago, Illinois at the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry. In a clever twist, the reveal coincided with the Fall Equinox. The Chevrolet Equinox is a perennial fleet favorite, having sold 4,731 units into fleet in 2015, according to data from IHS Automotive driven by Polk.

“The All-New, Canadian-built 2018 Chevrolet Equinox is a game changer in the compact SUV segment. With standard heated seats and remote-start on all models, and three all-new available powertrains, including an available turbo diesel engine, Equinox has the right features for our market in what has quickly become the largest segment in the country,” said Shane Peever, Brand Manager – Chevrolet Cars and Crossovers - Canada. “Delivering outstanding comfort, convenience, cargo versatility, and innovative new safety features, Equinox will continue to be a great choice for fleet and commercial drivers. With an estimated fuel efficiency of up to 5.9L / 100 kms on the highway, Equinox’s operating costs will also deliver for fleet and commercial customers. Equinox will be on sale in Q1 of 2017.”

The big news on the Equinox is that for the first time, it will be available with a diesel engine. Currently very few OEMs offer a diesel in the compact SUV segment. The diesel power plant in the equinox will be a 1.6 litre turbocharged diesel engine with 136 horsepower and 236 foot/pounds of torque mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. Fuel economy is 5.9L/100 kilometres on the highway. Fuel economy is helped by start/stop technology.

Two gasoline engines are also available on the 2018 model. A 1.5L turbocharged four-cylinder engine with 170 hp and 203 ft/lbs of torque mated to a six-speed automatic transmission comes standard. It offers fuel economy of 7.6L/100km on the highway with a FWD. An optional 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder engine is available and offers 252 hp and 260 ft/lbs of torque and is mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission. Fuel consumption is 8.4L/100km on the highway with a FWD. Equinox can tow 1,585 kilograms, the same as the outgoing models V-6 engine, with the optional 2.0L engine.

“With three choices, customers can select an engine that offers more of the attributes that are important to them: efficiency, performance and capability,” said Dan Nicholson, Vice-President, Global Propulsion Systems. “The advantage for each is power of a larger engine and the fuel economy of a smaller engine.”

The diesel option isn’t the only news for Equinox, as the 2018 model demonstrates GM’s dedication to safety with a variety of features added for that purpose. Among those is Surround Vision, which allows the driver to see a 360-degree bird’s eye view of the vehicle, which helps the driver to know where the vehicle is in relation to other objects. Those vehicles that do not have Surround Vision will come with standard rearview camera.

Next is Safety Alert Seat, which notifies the driver through pulses in the seat (on the left or right side) about objects in front or behind the vehicle. Teen Driver, which has been making its way into many GM products, is now available on Equinox. As is a new Rear Seat Reminder, which debuted on the 2017 GMC Acadia and will under certain circumstances remind drivers to check the back seat when they exit the vehicle.

Rounding out the new safety technologies on Equinox are: forward collision alert with following distance indicator, low-speed forward automatic braking, and lane keep assist with lane departure warning. Lane change alert with side blind zone alert and rear cross traffic alert are also included on the Equinox.

“The Chevrolet Equinox ramps up its awareness and protection capability with an even broader range of available technologies designed to assist drivers in everyday situations,” said Ray Kiefer, General Motors Active Safety Technical Fellow. “From daily driving to parking and crash avoidance, it can help the occupants avoid trouble altogether.”

The Equinox has a redesigned interior and exterior, with design cues taken from other recently designed Chevrolet products. The new Equinox has shed some weight and comes in at 10 percent lighter than its predecessor . Heated seats and a remote start are now standard on all trims in Canada.

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