Regardless of which trim you pick in the 2013 Chevrolet Equinox, the engine will likely impress you. First, you have a 2.4-liter DOHC four-cylinder engine, paired with a six-speed automatic to deliver 182 horsepower and 172 pound-feet of torque. This is not a super powerful engine, but fuel-economy is impressive at 22 mpg in the city and 32 mpg on the highway, and it can actually tow about 1,500 pounds. For a lot more power, Chevrolet is offering a 3.6-liter Spark Ignition Direct Injection V6 engine. This also has a six-speed automatic transmission, but delivers a remarkable 292 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. Both engines come with standard front-wheel drive, but all-wheel drive is available. When you opt for the V6 though, towing capacity gets bumped up to 3,500 pounds and you get additional features like standard Hill Start Assist and Trailer Sway Control. Although the four-wheel independent suspension does allow Equinox to have a smooth and comfortable ride, handling is just mediocre. The steering is relatively vague, so you feel a little disconnected to the road. Plus, a 40-foot turning circle is a little larger than what you would expect from a vehicle with no third row.
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• MyLink - Most consumers will want to add on Chevrolet MyLink. It integrates Bluetooth wireless technology and your smartphone to listen to all your favorite music. You can also stream Stitcher SmartRadio and Pandora as well.
• Audio - Equinox gives you a Pioneer sound system with 250 watts of power, subwoofer and eight speakers.
• Autonet Mobile Wi-Fi - This dealer installed option gives you and your passengers Wi-Fi wherever you happen to be.
• OnStar - Roadside service, hands-free calling, crash detection, destination guidance, concierge service and more are all offered with OnStar telecommunications.
• Speed Sensitive Volume - Have you ever noticed how the faster you go, the quieter your radio becomes? Speed sensitive volume will maintain a consistent level regardless of your speed.
Crash and braking tests have not yet been done on the 2013 Equinox, but it should score about the same as its predecessor. The 2012 model was rated “Good” in front and side-impact crash tests by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and braking distances were acceptable, taking 122 feet to stop from 60 mph. Safety features include:
• OnStar telecommunications service
• Traction control
• Tire-pressure monitoring
• Post-collision safety system
• Four-wheel anti-lock brakes
• Child seat anchors
• Stability control
• Rear door safety locks
• Engine immobilizer
• Dusk sensing headlamps
• Front seatbelt pretensioners
The exterior is modern, with clean lines, gorgeous headlamps and attractive wheels, whether you choose 17, 18 or 19-inch ones. The LTZ gets dressed up with a ton of chrome, so if you are looking for a vehicle that is a little showier, this is the trim for you.
There is a ton of room in the 2013 Equinox. Rear seat passengers have more than enough space to stretch their legs, and they even get a seat that reclines and slides for optimal comfort. The cabin is stylish and makes you feel as though you are in a vehicle in a higher price range. Two-tone color schemes add a nice touch, and the swooping design of the dash adds a nice touch. The downfall comes with the center console as there is an abundance of controls that makes it appear cluttered.
Cargo capacity is more than enough for most people. With the rear seat in place, you get 31.5 cubic feet, which is a lot of room. With the seat down, you only get 63.7 cubic feet, so if you haul large or bulky cargo, Equinox is not for you.