2010 Chevrolet Equinox, 2010 GMC Terrain Review


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2010 Chevrolet Equinox

SEE ALSO Chevrolet Specs, Pics and Comparisons-Chevrolet Buyers Guide
SEE ALSO GMC Specs, Pics and Comparisons-GMC Buyers Guide

THE AUTO PAGE
By JOHN HEILIG

SPECIFICATIONS


Model: 2010 Chevrolet Equinox/GMC Terrain
Engine: 2.4-liter DOHC I4
Horsepower/Torque: 182 hp @ 6700 rpm/172 lb.-ft. @ 4900
Transmission: 6-speed automatic
Wheelbase: 112.5 in.
Length/Width/Height: 187.8 (185.3 T) x 72.5 (72.8T) x 66.3 in.
Tires: P225/65R17
Cargo volume: 31.4/63.7 cu. ft. (behind rear seat/behind front seat)
Fuel economy: 20 mpg city/29 mpg highway/19.9 mpg test
Fuel capacity:
Base vehicle price: $27,.195 (E)/$27,450 (T)

The Bottom Line: Essentially identical vehicles except for trim, the Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain are excellent crossovers with a combination of good size, a useful 4-cylinder engine, and modern conveniences. Either vehicle would make a great choice for someone looking for a crossover or smaller SUV.

Is it Equinox or Ehquinox? Potayto/potahto. Terrain is easier.

The twin crossovers - Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain - are excellent examples of what a modern GM can accomplish, even without government interference. Both are fine automobiles with many features that make them desirable.

For example, they're good-sized front-wheel drive small sport utilities (for want of a better descriptive term) that have excellent cargo carrying capacity, reasonable economy, and decent power from the base 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine. Not only that, they're attractive and not an embarrassment to have in your driveway.

GM has designed them to compete with the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV-4 and Ford Escape, and they fit nicely into this market category.

It's hard to believe that the engine is only a 4-cylinder, most of the time. It's quiet and powerful and offers decent fuel economy. There's some transmission lag when you want to accelerate quickly, and the engine sounds like a typical four then. However, if you downshift (yes, you can with an automatic) some of that lag disappears.

Oddly, on both the Equinox and Terrain we heard what sounded like diesel "tapping" outside the vehicle.

The design of both cars attracted a lot of attention from other drivers and from pedestrians. All gave the design a thumbs up, which was encouraging.

The front seats are comfortable, even if they have minimal side support. The rear seats are also comfortable with decent knee and leg room. There's flat floor, so carrying a third passenger in the second row is a possibility.

GM VP of Design Ed Welburn once told me that he often looks for sensible interior design in other manufacturers' vehicles. In both the Equinox and Terrain there is a pop-up storage area on the top of the dash, for example, that makes good use of otherwise wasted space. All the doors have two-level storage, with a large cubby on the bottom and a smaller one on top. They could have made it three levels with bottoms to the door pulls. The rear seats have a fold-down arm rest with two cup holders. Plus, there are cup holders in the doors. The deep arm rest/center console can store the rear audio equipment plus a soda bottle. there's also a deep cubby at the base of the center stack that hold sunglasses, a cell phone, etc. It also contains the AUX and USB port if you prefer your iPod to XM radio.

The instrument panel consists of the standard tachometer and speedometer with water temperature and fuel level in between. There's a digital display that includes either a digital speedometer that makes the analog one redundant, or vehicle information.

We averaged 20 mpg with both vehicles, yet the Chevy claims 20/29 mpg city/highway and the Terrain 22/32. Same engine, same transmission.

The cargo area is excellent with four hooks for tie-downs. There's also a 12-volt outlet back there, two cubbies on the sides and a cargo net and shade to manage cargo.

The rear vision camera has a display in the rear view mirror. It's small, but clear. There should be a warning, though. Objects in the display are MUCH closer than they appear, but you can learn to live with it.

My only complaint, and it's one that an owner can learn to use properly, is that the audio and information display in the center of the dash is slightly confusing.

Needless to say, the Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain are fine crossover vehicles that will make any owner happy with their utility, economy and looks.

2009 The Auto Page Syndicate

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