2019 Chevrolet Equinox AWD: plenty of room, creature comforts

You really can’t go wrong when it comes to the compact SUV class.

My latest tester, the 2019 Chevrolet Equinox AWD Premier seats up to five adults and indulges everyone with plenty of room and creature comforts.

Equinox comes in L, LS, LT and my top-of-the-line Premier trim levels – with several engines that can be mixed and matched. Mine came with the 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that delivered plenty of oomph from standing starts or when passing on the freeway.

The exterior is current, mine was coated with Nightfall Gray Metallic enamel. Highlights include 19-inch ultra-bright machined wheels, luggage rack and side rails.

The engine is paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission and the duo delivers 28 miles per gallon, as measured by the EPA. The cargo area accommodated three full-size golf bags on a recent outing to North Bellingham Golf Course. If more room is needed, the rear seats fold flat at the sacrifice of three seats.

Connectivity is delivered in spades with six USB ports, 4G LTE Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and Apple CarPlay. On our trip north I plugged in my phone, accessed Spotify, and was entertained by jazz great, Hank Crawford. It was like a one-hour private concert. On the way home it was “Margaritaville” on XM satellite radio.

Navigation is also covered via your phone.

Front passengers enjoyed perforated leather, heated and ventilated bucket seats with the driver enjoying eight-way power adjustments and lumbar support. Rear passengers also received heated seats and fully upright or slightly reclined positions accessed via an easy-to-reach manual lever.

Other goodies include wireless device charging, heated steering wheel, dual-zone air conditioning, adaptive cruise control, rear-vision camera with multiple views, hands-free lift gate, remote vehicle start and more.

Two features worthy of note are teen driver technology and rear-seat reminder. Teen driver helps encourage better driving habits in a number of ways, like providing an in-vehicle report card that monitors the activation frequency of select available safety tech features, muting the audio system when front-seat occupants aren’t wearing their seat belts. Rear-seat reminder sounds a chime when you turn off the engine so you don’t leave valuables – like your children – behind.

Chevy’s also got your back when it comes to protecting your family with state-of-the-art safety equipment. A lengthy list of driver assistance features are included as standard. Highlights include forward-collision alert, low-speed forward braking, lane-keep assist, following-distance indicator, front pedestrian braking, rear park assist, rear cross-traffic assist, lane-change alert and blind-zone alert.

The Equinox is built in Ontario, Canada, and receives five-star government safety ratings for overall score, front crash and side crash test scenarios.

Base Price: $36,595

Price As Driven: $38,740

Base price includes destination charge. Vehicles are provided by the manufacturer. List price may vary at local dealerships.

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