DABAS blog post; Early October 2018: Hello Readers, with the AFL season now over: The spring equinox occurring days ago and daylight savings starting, summer 2018-19 is quickly approaching and Christmas road trip planning may be underway; now footy fans have their weekends back, that new car needed since before the AFL 2018 season’s first bounce may be in contemplation, even becoming a reality? With all that in mind let’s have a general-in-nature introductory look at the Holden Equinox range; a new model player in the Australian medium SUV market segment to consider and that is available at a local Holden dealership near you, could this be the car you park in the MCG car-park next football season? The combined Equinox series’ evolutions around the world are reported to have previously sold over 2.6 million units worldwide: so, although its new to our Australian shores the Equinox has been available overseas for some time. We hope you find this blog page an interesting read, hopefully providing some useful “general-in-nature” information to help you on your car-buying journey.
If you would like DABAS’s assistance buying a car – or – a brand-new 2018 Holden Equinox, please click here.
Here we go; To begin with, some trivia night information for the car enthusiast:
The Equinox has been available in the USA and the Americas since 2004 in previous model series design guises as the Chevrolet Equinox ,with series evolutions up until the present (also as the closely related Pontiac Torrent up till 2009 – The Pontiac Torrent was a midsize crossover produced by General Motors for the 2006 to 2009 model years. A replacement for the Aztek, it was a mildly restyled version of the first-generation Chevrolet Equinox. The Torrent shared its basic body structure and mechanicals with the Equinox. However, the Torrent had a different front and rear end look to distinguish it visually from the Equinox. The suspension was also modified to be firmer whilst the electronic power steering was recalibrated to deliver a firmer feel. The Torrent shared the Equinox’s 185 hp (138 kW; 188 PS) 3.4 L V6 of the day with the 5-Speed Aisin AF33 automatic transmission. The Pontiac Torrent was also featured as one of the prizes in the American reality television series Survivor in 2005). The new Holden Equinox is built on the GM D2XX platform making it related to the Buick envision and the GMC Terrain. The new Holden Equinox is produced at GM’s Ramos Arizpe assembly facility in Mexico and has replaced the superseded Korean-built five-seat Captiva in Australia. The Australasian Equinox will soon be sold alongside the soon-to-be-launched seven-seat Holden Acadia, also known as the GMC Acadia in the Americas, rather than the Chevrolet Traverse, which sits above the Equinox in select Chevrolet markets. The Holden Acadia will soon replace the Holden Captiva LT-Z seven-seater, (pssst- “that is now in run-out sale”!)
Now moving on from the local pub’s trivia night quiz question answers, Holden Australia launched this Holden Equinox (EQ series) locally in November 2017, with the first cars arriving in December 2017. The Holden Equinox is available with a 1.5 L turbocharged engine on the base LS and LS-plus models, while the more powerful 2.0 L turbocharged model is available for all other models: the LT, LTZ and LTZ-V; the 1.6 L turbo-diesel engine option was later launched in May 2018. Some say Holden can now seriously enter the mid-size SUV sales battles with rivals the Mazda CX-5, Hyundai Tucson, Kia Sportage, Honda’s CRV and Toyota RAV 4, just to name a few! the Australian Holden Equinox model range has also been retuned by Holden’s (clever world-renowned engineers) to better suit our roads and conditions.
Pricing & Specifications, The Equinox LS manual kicks off the range at (currently on sale) $27,990 drive-away, with an extra $2000 normally required to get the six-speed automatic transmission.You get six airbags, 17-inch alloy wheels, a reversing camera with sensors, ISOFIX and top-tether child seat anchors, automatic headlights with LED daytime runners, an Active Noise Cancellation (on LS auto only) system like your headphones, plus a 7.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
LS-plus Automatic: It’s a $3000 jump to the LS-plus automatic at $32,990 ($34,990 drive-away). Extra luxuries include a leather steering wheel, power-folding side mirrors and automatic high beam assist. The additional benefit is the Holden Eye forward-facing camera system that gives you a whole bunch of active safety acronyms such as AEB – autonomous emergency brakes, LDW – lane departure warning, LKA – lane-keep assist, FCA -a forward collision alert with HUW – head-up warning , RCTA – rear cross-traffic alert and BSM – blind-spot monitoring plus a Safety Alert driver’s seat – SADS, which sends vibrations through your rump when the distance alert system goes off. To see some more information on safety acronyms: what they do, how they work, see the DABAS blog index here.
Both cars have the entry 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine and have front-wheel drive, but the next versions up the ladder get a class-leading 2.0-litre turbo-petrol and a nine-speed automatic transmission, plus the availability of AWD (on LTZ and LTZ-V).
The Equinox LT costs $36,990 ($39,990 drive-away). Alongside that more powerful drivetrain you get extra features including 18-inch alloy wheels, HID headlights, roof-rack mounts, front sensors, heated front seats and USB points for back-seat passengers. There’s also a larger 8.0-inch touchscreen including satellite navigation and live traffic updates.
The next step is the $39,990 ($44,639 drive-away) Equinox LTZ, which adds 19-inch alloy wheels, a hands-free power tailgate, roof rails, full LED headlights and tail-lights, and a system to do automatic parking. Included also is leather-appointed seating with heating for four occupants, wireless phone charging pad, DAB+ digital radio and a Bose audio system. There’s also seat memory and electric lumbar support for the driver. Furthermore, you can option the AWD system for $4300, This addition takes the list price out to $44,290 plus ORCs.
Finally, there’s the range-topping LTZ-V, which comes standard with AWD for $46,290 ($51,208 drive-away). This extra expense gets you in addition a large dual-panel sunroof, heated steering wheel, ventilated front seats, and power-adjustable front passenger seat with lumbar adjustment.
Also, it is important to note all models in the range have a top 5-star ANCAP safety rating.
There’s not much visual difference between the LS and LS-plus. The LS-plus certainly offers plenty of additional equipment, while cabin storage options and ergonomics in both are reportedly fantastic. While the LS-plus has substance, the mid-range LT has noticeably more bling with a larger screen with sat-nav. The LTZ’s leather and wireless phone charger, then the LTZ-V’s massive sunroof give the buyer a raft of choices. The top- spec variants with the included trimmings and bling are edging $50,000 plus ORCs. All Holden Equinox variants offer good leg and head room, up there competing with segment rivals the Nissan X-Trail and the Honda CR-V. The LTZ variant has a rear power-point and two USB chargers. The LTZ also has heated rear leather seats adding extra rump-comfort factor for those who prefer this variant. Cargo space is at the higher end of the segment, whilst like many cars in this segment the Holden Equinox comes with a space-saving spare wheel.
Unlike the Nissan X-Trail, Honda CR-V or the Mitsubishi Outlander, there’s no seven-seat option; you will need to wait for the soon-to-arrive Holden Acadia or grab a Holden Captiva LT-Z in a current run-out sale.
Drivetrains; The base engine standard to the LS and LS-plus is a Euro 5-compliant 1.5-litre turbo-petrol making 127kW of power at 5600rpm and 275Nm of torque between 2000 and 4000rpm. It’s matched to a six-speed manual or a six-speed auto, the automatic being standard on the LS-plus. It’s also only available with FWD. It’ll run on 91 RON fuel, and Holden claims fuel use of 6.9L/100km. It has a braked tow capacity of 1500kg.
The LT and above get a 2.0-litre turbo-petrol motor that eclipses the former most-powerful medium SUVs in this segment, the Subaru Forester and Ford Escape. It makes 188kW at 5500rpm and 353Nm between 2500 and 4500rpm. It’s basically the same engine as found in some of the new Holden ZB Commodore range variants. It is matched to a nine-speed automatic that is reported to be smooth. This motor requires premium unleaded at the local petrol bowser, and Holden claims fuel use of 8.2–8.4L/100km. As of May 2018, most versions of the Equinox family are also available with a Euro 6-compliant 1.6-litre turbo-diesel that makes 100kW/320Nm and should cut right down on fuel usage. By it being Euro 6, its NOx and CO2 emissions are said to be better than most diesels in this segment too. The Diesel option was launched in early May 2018 and is available from the LS+ specification variant all the way to the top of the line LTZ-V variant. The 1.6-litre turbocharged-diesel engine uses significantly less fuel than either of the two-petrol engine available but does add a $3000 higher cost in recommended retail pricing (RRP). The petrol engine option does remain most of the sales choice in this mid-sized crossover segment; this diesel engine option should gain interest from the Wimmera high-milers driving all the way from Horsham to the MCG weekly, given its estimated driving range between fill-ups of nearly 1000km. The 1.6-litre turbo-diesel engine maximises fuel economy with an estimated 5.6 litres per 100km. The AWD option costs $4300, and as well as being an on-demand system that directs torque to the rear wheels when the fronts lose traction, it also has a button that lets you disconnect the rear axle entirely to conserve fuel.
The AWD option is not available on the LS-plus and LT.
On the road;
It is reported that the Equinox strikes a pretty good balance, thanks to great work by Holden’s clever engineers with lots of testing in regional Victoria making it feel good on Australia’s diverse road network and conditions. Reportedly the ride comfort on the lower-grade cars is particularly good because the tyres have plenty of cushioning sidewall; all variants are quiet thanks to in-cabin noise-cancelling tech; the LTZ-V’s 19-inch wheels make the ride firmer and make the turning circle a reported 12.7m on this variant. The Holden Equinox ranges road handling is assisted by electric steering, torque-vectoring by the brakes, and all-round independent suspension; it reportedly competes well with rivals in this area, for the class segment.
Warranty: As standard with the Holden Equinox range; every vehicle purchased from 1st July 2018 comes with Holden’s 5-year / unlimited KM warranty. You’re also covered for approved and Genuine Holden Accessories & Parts as well.
A quick general-in-nature summarised look at the new 2018 Holden Equinox range. Moving up from the LS, the LS-plus with its extra safety tech is a good starting point; some reviewers do say though, the $36,990 LT with its greater list of features and potent engine is the one that aligns best against the Equinox’s other vehicle makers/brands segment opposition. The LTZ and LTZ-V variants also add lots of extra features as mentioned previously above. Pricing on a new 2018 Holden Equinox is currently for a limited time, on a sale price of $27990 drive away for the base model at a Melbourne Holden Dealer near you.
At DABAS we know that buying a car to suit your needs can be one of the biggest purchases in your life; we hope this intended to be “general-in-nature advice and information” blog page has provided some helpful assistance for you in deciding the path of your car-buying journey. We look forward to having a chat when the need arises for you to update your car; to assess your personal car-safety requirements and buying needs to suit your lifestyle. And importantly your set specified budget!
Whatever roads your life journey takes you on, DABAS can help you find a car to travel those roads.
Please note: All pricing and information mentioned in this blog post is to be considered as a general-in-nature summary; all specifications and pricing mentioned in this blog page may be outdated or superseded by your time of reading this blog page, the current chosen model range’s specifications and pricing will be confirmed together with your chosen vehicle’s sales representative in their showroom at the time you transition to becoming a client of DABAS.
DABAS is aware of some things to consider and to be aware of in this vehicle brands’ segment, including the drive-away-no-more-to-pay deals obtainable – at times – with this model car and some of this vehicle’s segment opposition; These will be discussed upon your transition to becoming a client of DABAS.
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For helpful information (including safety acronyms explained), see our blog archives index
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