The Chevy Equinox has been around since it debuted in 2005. The Equinox has changed over the years, starting as a mid-size sport utility vehicle before becoming a compact crossover SUV. Now in its third generation, the Equinox's sales numbers have never looked better. But there's plenty to love about previous model years. We'll be taking a look at the history of the Chevy Equinox in this used car guide, so you can find that perfect previously-owned Equinox for you.
First Generation (2005-2009)
The Chevy Equinox debuted in 2005 while the Pontiac Torrent hit dealerships a year later. The two vehicles are mostly the same, except for front and rear styling. You can use our review of first generation of the Equinox for the Torrent as well.
The first generation of the Equinox is praised for its roominess, its strong V6 engine, and quiet cabin. But some complain of the early Equinox's steering being slow. Cargo space stretches to a cavernous 68.6 cubic feet with the seats folded, quite good for the class then and today. Standard features are pretty slim compared to today's offerings, with just a CD stereo with satellite radio and an auxiliary input jack, though navigation and and a rear entertainment system were available on some trim levels. JD Power gave the first-year Equinox their best 5 out of 5 score for reliability. Overall, this is a strong contender, despite any steering lag.
Second Generation (2010-2017)
Since the second was the longest-running generation, there may be more Equinoxes on the road from this time than any other. The Equinox became a smaller SUV, falling into the compact crossover class. Cargo room shrank for this five-seater accordingly to 31.5 cubic feet when the rear seats are folded down.
Though the dimensions shrank, the Equinox is still going strong. We recommend getting something other than the base engine, which is a little weak. There's a much stronger 264- to 301-horsepower V6 engine that comes in front-wheel or all-wheel drive out there. Towing is particularly strong with the more powerful engine, towing up to 3,500 pounds, depending on model year.
The Equinox witnessed a lot of technological innovation during this generation. Look for DVD entertainment starting in 2013, Wi-Fi hotspot since 2015, and Chevy MyLink infotainment system since 2016. If you love your tech, a more recent model is a smarter choice.
Third Generation (2018-today)
2018 gave rise to the newest Chevy Equinox generation, now in its second year. You may not find many of these at the used dealership, but if you do you'll benefit from minor styling updates in the vein of the Malibu, Cruze, and Volt, as well as new engine options. The gas-saving turbodiesel might be of special interest, getting up to 40 highway miles per gallon. There's also a 170-horsepower turbo-four engine and a 252-horsepower turbo-four. The interior styling has improved, with a more upscale look. And the interior tech is much improved as well, now including Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Teen Driver, safety alert seat, lane keep assist, and low-speed automatic emergency braking. Definitely get this generation if you want the best engine options and latest tech.