With apologies to GM, when it comes to boring cars the Equinox is, well, right up there on the snooze parade. It is what it is, after all – a commuter’s SUV, a utility with a little style, a little zip – but, mostly, a lot of utility, wide gaps and bad plastics. All of that makes the new Equinox Sport – debuted at the 2007 Detroit Auto Show with a plan to reach dealerships later in 2007 as a 2008 model – vitally important to the self-esteem of Equinox owners across America: Here is the pepper, the spice, the reason to feel glad and happy when you’re behind the wheel of an Equinox. Just add Sport and you’ve got yourself some action.
Why it Matters
Depending on the price tag – which hasn’t been released – the Equinox Sport could be a great deal for people who want performance and like the overall Equinox package. With exterior modifications and what we hope is a vastly improved interior trim, the Equinox may very well be a five-passenger performance-oriented SUV that everyman can afford.
What’s Under the Hood
GM’s 3.6-liter V6 engine powers the Equinox Sport, delivering 263 horsepower and 250 lb.-ft of torque – a 42 percent power increase over the Equinox LT. That engine is mated to GM’s six-speed automatic transmission; together, GM estimates that the Equinox Sport will go from 0-60 in less than seven seconds. That added power is handled by a performance-tuned suspension, lowered ride height, specific shock tuning, control arms and larger, solid stabilizer bars create a more spry handling experience. The Equinox Sport comes in front-drive or all-wheel-drive configurations.
What it Looks Like
First, there’s no roof rack. That says something right there. Then, GM put body-colored front and rear fascias and a body color grille cross bar on the Equinox Sport, as well as trapezoidal design cues on the fascias, silver-painted air inlets, and dual chrome exhaust outlets. Of course, nothing says performance like some beefy shoes, and the Equinox Sport’s got ‘em: 18-inchers on five-spoke wheels mounted on P235/50R18 tires.
About Brian Chee Prior to joining Autobytel in the Spring of 2000, Brian Chee spent 15 years as a writer and editor in his native southern California, his work appearing in a wide variety of regional newspapers and online publications. As an editor at Autobytel, Brian has been quoted in numerous regional and national publications, including the Wall St. Journal and InStyle Magazine. He is responsible for writing, editing and planning content for three of the company’s consumer websites: autobytel.com, autoweb.com and carsmart.com. His “beat” includes vehicle reviews, features, news and Auto Show coverage. Brian considers himself a “SoCal” car enthusiast: the kind who grades a car on how it handles today’s urban and suburban reality of daily traffic gridlock, rising fuel prices and fast-paced lifestyles. Brian is an Eagle Scout, a member of the Automotive Press Association, the Motor Press Guild, and the California State University Advisory Board for Internet Writing. Brian holds a bachelor's degree in Journalism.