2018 Chevrolet Equinox front three quarter driving road ・ Photo by General Motors
The Chevrolet Equinox has been the brand’s best-selling SUV for quite a while. Americans have bought nearly two million examples of the small five-passenger SUV since 2005. Now in its third generation, the all-new and completely redesigned Equinox, which debuted last year, also has proven very popular. Stylish, fuel efficient, and comfortable, the 2019 Chevy Equinox is just the right size for small families, and it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg.
With prices starting right around $25,000, the 2019 Chevy Equinox is available in a handful of trim levels and buyers have three engines to choose from, including a turbocharged 2.0 liter and a fuel-efficient diesel. But there are plenty of other choices if you’re in the market for a small family-friendly SUV. Here are 10 Chevy Equinox competitors to consider when you’re shopping for a compact crossover.
Although the Ford Escape hasn’t changed much since 2013, it remains one of Ford’s most popular SUVs. With an athletic suspension along with responsive brakes and steering, the Escape generally is more fun to drive than the Equinox. This is especially true of the top-line Escape Titanium, which also packs a turbocharged 2.0-liter engine with 245 hp, making it one of the most powerful in the segment. With 34 cubic feet behind its rear seat, the Escape also offers more cargo space than the Equinox.
Still, the Escape feels a bit dated compared to the Chevy. And the Equinox’s standard turbocharged 1.5-liter engine is more fuel-efficient than the Ford’s, achieving 32 mpg on the highway. Escape prices start right around $25,000.
Photo by Ford
Because both Chevrolet and GMC are part of General Motors, the 2019 Chevy Equinox and 2019 GMC Terrain share many components including their chassis, engines, and transmissions. The two crossovers are even built on the same Canadian assembly line. They are mechanical twinsies, but the two SUVs look nothing alike. The GMC’s design is much more muscular and interesting than the Chevy’s.
Prices start right around $26,000 and climb to over $38,000 for the chromed-out and luxurious Denali, which makes the GMC considerably more expensive than the Chevy. This is justified by the GMC’s more luxurious interior, which includes more comfortable seats. GMC also offers a few features unavailable to Equinox buyers, like a front passenger seat that folds flat to increase ultimate cargo volume and wireless phone charging.
Photo by GMC
Honda’s CR-V is America’s best-selling SUV over the last two decades. Built in Indiana, every CR-V gets a Continuously Variable (CVT) transmission, which helps fuel efficiency but can dull response compared to the Chevy’s traditional 6-speed automatic.
Still, the Honda performs very well for this class. With its available 190-hp turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder, the Honda CR-V is nearly as quick as the Chevy equipped with its optional 252-hp 2.0-liter. And with fuel economy ratings of 28 mpg city and 34 mpg highway, the Honda gets better mileage. The CR-V also offers class-leading cargo volume with 39 cubic feet of space behind its rear seat, it’s an IIHS Top Safety Pick (while the Equinox is not), and we prefer the Honda’s interior, which just feels more modern.
Photo by Honda
Completely redesigned for 2019, the all-new Hyundai Santa Fe replaces the Santa Fe Sport in the Korean automaker’s lineup. Seven trim levels are available, with prices starting right around $26,000.
Like the Chevy Equinox, standard equipment includes a 7-inch touchscreen, but Hyundai also includes a long list of driver aids including Forward Collision Avoidance Assist, Blind Spot Collision Avoidance Assist, and Rear Cross Traffic Collision Avoidance Assist. That makes the Santa Fe a better value. With 36 cubic feet behind its back seat, the Santa Fe’s cargo space also is considerably larger than the Chevy’s. The Santa Fe’s acceleration and performance are on par with the Equinox; however, the Chevy gets better fuel economy than the Hyundai.
Photo by Hyundai
This is not only the largest SUV on this list, but the 2019 Kia Sorento also is the only SUV here with a standard third row. In fact, with a starting price right around $27,000, the Sorento is one of the least expensive crossovers available with 7-passenger seating. Unlike the Chevy, the Kia Sorento also is rated a Top Safety Pick+ by IIHS.
Cargo volume is spacious for this class. Behind the Kia’s third row is 11.3 cubic feet of space, but fold those seats flat and the Sorento’s cargo space is substantial at 38.0 cubic feet, which is considerably more than you get in the Chevy Equinox. For 2019, Sorento V6 models get a new 8-speed automatic transmission for improved performance and fuel efficiency. Still, the 252-hp Equinox is quicker and gets better fuel economy.
Photo by Kia
The 2019 Nissan Rogue is Nissan’s best-selling model, and last year Nissan sold more Rogues than ever before, making it one of America’s most popular compact SUVs. It easily outsells the Chevy, offering families a very desirable combination of style, space, performance, and overall value.
All Nissan Rogues are powered by an unspectacular 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine combined with a continuously variable automatic transmission. Although the engine only produces 170 hp, the Rogue is as quick as an Equinox with the base 1.5-liter engine, and it gets better mileage than the Chevy, with a 33 mpg rating on the highway. Also, with 39 cubic feet, the Nissan has more cargo volume than the Chevy, and it’s an IIHS Top Safety Pick. Prices for the 2019 Nissan Rogue start around $26,000.
Photo by Nissan
Assembled in Japan, the 2019 Mazda CX-5 is the best-selling Mazda in America. Although it isn’t the most powerful or the quickest SUV on this list, the Mazda CX-5 is the most fun to drive. This is because the Mazda handles better and feels sportier than most of its competitors, including the Chevy Equinox. With a youthful flare, the Mazda also is more attractive than the Chevy and it has a sportier, more modern interior. Plus, the CX-5 has earned the highest possible Top Safety Pick+ rating from IIHS.
Every 2019 Mazda CX-5 is powered by a lively 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine rated at 187 hp and paddle shifters are standard, so its transmission can be shifted manually. Unfortunately, the Mazda’s infotainment system feels dated compared to many in the class, including the Chevy. Pricing starts right around $25,500.
Photo by Mazda
Subaru calls the Outback a crossover, but the truth is it’s the best-selling wagon in America. The 2019 Subaru Outback also is one of the automaker's best-selling models, and it’s the only SUV on this list with standard all-wheel drive. Built in Indiana, the Outback is very carlike and comfortable. Overall build quality and interior fit and finish are a step above the Chevy’s.
Prices start around $27,000, with most models powered by a 175-hp 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine and a well-tuned continuously variable automatic transmission. The combination achieves 32 mpg on the highway, which is better than the 1.5-liter Equinox with all-wheel drive. With 35.5 cubic feet, the Outback’s cargo space also is larger than the Chevy’s, and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has named it a Top Safety Pick+.
Photo by Subaru
Toyota now makes eight different SUVs and one of its most popular is the RAV4, which has been completely redesigned for 2019. Toyota has given the RAV4 an all-new more aggressive look, a more rigid chassis, and more fuel-efficient powertrains. It’s also slightly larger than last year’s model. Several trim levels are offered, all powered by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder backed by an 8-speed automatic transmission.
The RAV4 also is the only SUV on this list available as a hybrid. Toyota’s hybrid system combines the 2.5-liter engine with a small battery pack and electric motor for enhanced acceleration and fuel economy, which Toyota says will be even better than the Equinox diesel. The 2019 RAV4 XSE Hybrid is the sportiest configuration, with a sport-tuned suspension and even more aggressive exterior design. Every 2019 RAV4 comes standard with the second generation of Toyota Safety Sense, and the updated safety package adds new active-safety technologies and capabilities.
Photo by Toyota
All-new just last year, the 2019 Volkswagen Tiguan once again is a player in the compact SUV class. The crossover is available in four trim levels with prices starting right around $25,500. Every model is powered by a very smooth turbocharged 2.0-liter engine with an output of 184 hp and an impressive 221 lb-ft of torque, which is very strong for this class. As a result, the VW is much more fun to drive the Chevy Equinox, and with a 0-60 mph time of about 8.2 seconds, it’s considerably quicker than the Chevy.
Unlike the Chevy Equinox, the 2019 Tiguan also is available with a small third row, which increases its seating capacity from five to seven passengers. The additional row of seats is available as on option on the Tiguans equipped with all-wheel drive for an extra $500, which makes it a quite a value.
Photo by Volkswagen