Chevy Equinox and Audi Q5

| November 1, 2017


By Kelly Foss

Chevy Equinox | Starting price: $23,500

In a very crowded field of compact SUVs the Equinox is one of the originals. The market on these hot-selling vehicles changes fast and Chevy has followed the trend. The brand new Equinox is totally updated and massively improved over
outgoing model.

The previous Equinox was actually a bit larger than the competition. In the new model that was not considered an advantage due to weight and drivability considerations. The new Equinox is a whopping 400 pounds lighter and significantly shorter. Yet the magicians at GM have managed to retain a large interior that is both comfortable and useful.

The Equinox comes in four trim levels. The base L is priced at just over $24,000 and is nicely equipped. The full zoot Premier model will demand over $37,000 for its ownership.

The new Equinox comes equipped with three engines. The base engine is a new 1.5 liter turbocharged unit that produces 170 horsepower, about the same as the larger engine it replaces. Above that is a turbo 2.0 with 252 horsepower, about what you’d expect from a past generation 3.0 V6. Both these engines have more than enough power and get better fuel economy than the ones they replace. Uniquely, Chevrolet will offer a class-exclusive 1.6 liter turbo diesel. Though diesel powerplants in general have had
their reputation’s tarnished thanks to Volkswagen’s chicanery, their mechanical advantages still exist. The new diesel will offer a highway economy number of 40 miles per gallon in the Equinox, a number that beats all others in this class by a country mile.

The 1.5 turbo and the 1.6 diesel will be equipped with 6-speed automatic transmission and the 2.0 will get a 9-speed automatic. Both front and all-wheel drive are available. The new 3,327 pound lightweight Equinox has a towing capacity up to 3,500 pounds.

The handling of the Equinox is responsive but not sporty. It is smooth but not sloppy. It’s actually a good mix that will satisfy the large majority of buyers. This vehicle also benefits from Chevy’s extra attention to vehicle quietness using technology like active noise cancelling.

The interior is also comfortable and entertaining. The seating feels good and there’s ample legroom and cargo space in the vehicle. Options like the hands-free power liftgate make accessing the very large cargo area a breeze.

Available Drive Confidence packages include rear park assist, cross traffic alert, side blind spot alert, collision alert, automatic low speed braking, lane keep assist and safety alert seat vibrators.

Upscale audio systems, navigation, MyLink infotainment, onboard 4G LTE wireless hotspot, ventilated leather seating, wireless phone charging, panorama sun roof and even a Teen Driver parental control and monitoring system can be found on the Equinox.

So, with regards to the new Equinox, is the whole greater than the sum of the parts? In this case yes. Overall, it’s an appealing and compelling package. Looks like a winner for Chevy.



Audi Q5 | Starting price: $41,500

The Q5 from Audi fits squarely in the five-passenger luxury SUV segment. Following its North America debut in 2009, the Q5 helped fuel Audi of America’s growth to 200,000 sales in 2015 as the brand’s top-selling model. Now, the all-new 2018 Q5 aims to make a similar impact on Audi’s fortunes in that market.

The new Q5 applies the distinctive Audi “Q” SUV design language, accentuating the sporty, independent nature of the vehicle. The exterior has been redesigned to feature enhanced lines including a flat, coupe-like roof line coupled with a strong, wave-design shoulder line and pronounced wheel arches which emphasize the standard quattro® all-wheel drive system. Visually the Q5 has matured… in a good way. It looks more substantial and the shape is now intriguing. The design language makes it look like a car that would justify its $40,000+ price tag.

Not only does it look more substantial on the outside, the interior also feels more spacious and actually is a bit roomier. That feeling of spaciousness and lightness comes thanks to the wing-design wrap-around dashboard. The car delivers even more technology like the available Audi virtual cockpit, MMI® touch and standard Audi smartphone interface. Though this class of vehicle costs more, they also have lovely luxury accoutrements and trim. Audi, famous for its perfectly crafted interiors, has lavished its best efforts on the Q5 and it does not disappoint.

Featuring a redeveloped powertrain, the Q5 comes equipped with a turbocharged 2.0-liter TFSI® four-cylinder engine and an all-new 7-speed S tronic® dual-clutch transmission. It is perfectly capable of hustling the Q5 down the road with a 5.9 second sprint from 0-60 mph. This refined new powertrain also delivers a best-in-class fuel economy rating of 25 mpg combined. The suspension has also been improved delivering a more comfortable and a more controlled ride. The Quattro always-on All Wheel Drive system has selectable settings allowing the vehicle to handle many conditions from mud, snow, sand, winding roads and extended runs on West Texas interstates with 85 mile-an- hour speed limits.

The Q5 also features a new suite of driver assistance systems, including standard Audi pre-sense® city and available Audi side assist and rear cross traffic assist systems. These are designed to help drivers navigate traffic with confidence. Additional safety systems include adaptive cruise control with stop & go, plus traffic jam assist which will manage the car’s stopping, starting and creeping in traffic up to 40 miles an hour. It also offers sign recognition so it can compare the posted speed limits with your actual speed and electronically nudge you if you’re going too fast. Turn assist stops you from accidentally making a left-hand turn into oncoming traffic.

Buyers are drawn to modern SUV’s because they drive like cars yet are more versatile and provide better visibility while driving. For that segment of society that wants luxury features and technology but in a city-sized package, the Q5 is worth looking at.

For more information on this car and other vehicles, visit

Category: New Automobiles

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