2009 Chevrolet Equinox SUV Review | Edmunds.com

2009 Chevrolet Equinox SUV

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
Chevrolet Equinox Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 3.6 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 264 hp @ 6500 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 17/24 mpg
  • Bluetooth Yes
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2009 Chevrolet Equinox

  • Thanks to its spacious cabin, powerful and efficient performance, variety of trim levels and just-right-for-most-folks size, the 2009 Chevrolet Equinox is high on our list of recommended crossover SUVs.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Roomy and versatile cabin, something-for-everyone lineup, excellent crash test scores.

  • Cons

    Some subpar interior materials, slow steering response on non-Sport models.

  • What's New for 2009

    For 2009, the Chevrolet Equinox gains side curtain airbags and satellite radio as standard, while Bluetooth joins the options list.

Gas Mileage


  • 17
  • cty
  • 24
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

My biggest disapointment

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Vehicle: 2008 Chevrolet Equinox

I got this car for my wife, and she loved it for about 3 months. Got it new in 09 and have had nothing but issues. Understand a car that is on the road for 5 years should have some normal ware and tear. at 45K we had the privlige of buying a new transmission. Shortly after that timing chain. Sun roof drains keep pluging and when it rains comes inside car. Have had tire issues and TPMS issues and now Im sure spark plug issues. I made an appointment to see the dealer for stalling issues. I am getting to be real good friends with the service center operators. At 60 K now Im afraid to sell this to anyone. I dont want to pass on junk.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

Biggest mistake i ever made!!!

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Vehicle: 2008 Chevrolet Equinox

Purchased my Equinox new in 2008 with 56 miles on it. The issues in order of occurance: Rear window washer quit, power steering locked up, tire sensors malfuntioned, driver side window & lock and cd player all quit working simultaneously, misfiring at 50mph (changed plugs and wires. Still misfiring) Both headlights have been replaced 9 times in 5 yrs and are very hard to replace. Headlights quit simultaneously each time. GM dropped the ball with the Equinox. Why has there not been a recall?

Amazing truck!

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Vehicle: 2008 Chevrolet Equinox

May be one of the greatest trucks ever built. The exterior is amazingly solid, with very strong metal. I feel very safe when driving around in it. The front seats are nice and supportive, although the back seats are a tad hard, but a 5 hour road trip would still be easy to get through. VERY powerful engine, although still more fuel efficient than my 2001 Dodge Caravan with the 3.3l V6. I am getting 13 litres/100KM CITY! 5L HIGHWAY! I have factory chrome which covers the door handles, grille, exhaust tip, and the trunk. I am 5'11, and when in the back, I have well over 5 inches of leg room, and that is with the passenger seat in my position, and with the rear seats pulled all the way back.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Money pit!!!!

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Vehicle: 2008 Chevrolet Equinox

We bought this vehicle used with 60,000 miles almost 2 years ago. Since it was used, we went ahead and got the extended warranty from the dealership. we had to replace the plugs for the car chargers, we had to replace the heated seat sensors twice w/in 2 weeks, the ignition cylinder had to be replaced so that the car would stop cutting in and out. Then just after the warranty expired, we were told the routers needed to be replaced, but in order to do so the entire brake system had to be done. We've had a slight power steering leak, and today while driving down a country road the transmission went out!! Ahhh, stay away from this money pit. Not worth the problems and money

Looked great but total pia

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Vehicle: 2008 Chevrolet Equinox

The Equinox drives good for the most part but has tons of issues. My biggest issue is the tire sensors are always going off. Had the sensor issue replaced 3 times under warranty in only a year. Warranty ran out and sensor now doesn't read pressure right. Also have a big issue with when you replace the brakes you have to replace the whole thing. It would be fine if it was rare but you have to do this every 40k miles approximately. At 70k you than get to replace the belts too. The headlights are impossible to replace on your own you have to find a dealer or a good mechanic to figure it out. Good thing my brake lights never went out because they look more difficult.. Wasn't worth the money!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Too many problems for the

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Vehicle: 2008 Chevrolet Equinox

I bought my car new in January 2008, and have had NUMEROUS problems. The motor to the rear windshield wipers went out just after the full warranty ran out (about 38000 miles). The check engine light has been on from about 50000 miles, with no explanation and no way to correct it. The alternator went out after about 60000 miles. GM paid for that, after some complaining. The battery has died several times, after having radio on for about 15 minutes with key on accessory. Still owe too much on it to do anything about it. Don't feel right selling it to someone else and passing off my problems to them. Wouldn't be worth what's owed on it anyway! Very discouraged! Should have stayed with Ford!


Full 2009 Chevrolet Equinox Review

What's New for 2009

For 2009, the Chevrolet Equinox gains side curtain airbags and satellite radio as standard, while Bluetooth joins the options list.


Mention the 2009 Chevrolet Equinox to your family or friends considering a midsize crossover SUV and they're likely to say, "Huh? An Equa-what?" Just as with good yet obscure bands, the Equinox is a pleasant experience waiting to be discovered by those willing to look past the typical Rick Dees Weekly Top 40 of its segment.

Respectable performance along with decent fuel efficiency highlight the 2009 Chevrolet Equinox's strong points, which also include a space-efficient design, a versatile cabin, a comfortable ride and strong crash test scores. A key feature is the adjustable split rear seat design -- those seats can slide fore and aft to boost cargo capacity or rear legroom as needs dictate. Last year, Chevy furthered the Equinox's appeal by adding the enthusiast-oriented Sport trim level and the luxury-lined LTZ.

Neither as small as the true compact SUVs nor as ungainly as the larger midsize utes, the 2009 Chevrolet Equinox strikes many, including us, as being just the right size. Though some rivals offer third-row seats, these marketing ploys are typically useful only for kids no bigger than their Barbie and WWE dolls. The Equinox plays a more honest game, instead offering expandable space for second-row passengers.

Of course, the Equinox faces a number of solid competitors, including the top-selling and top-rated Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4. There's also the Mitsubishi Outlander, Nissan Rogue and Saturn Vue. Is it a favorite for an automotive Grammy? Maybe not, but the Equinox is certainly worthy of inclusion as a nominee on your list.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2009 Chevrolet Equinox is a midsize SUV that seats five and comes in four trim levels: base LS, midlevel LT, fully loaded LTZ and performance-oriented Sport. Standard equipment on the LS includes 16-inch aluminum wheels, a roof rack, air-conditioning, a tiltable steering column, a flat-folding front passenger seat and a 60/40-split-folding rear seat that slides fore/aft and reclines. Cruise control, full power accessories, automatic headlights, a driver information center and a CD player with an auxiliary audio jack and satellite radio are also standard.

The LT actually comes in two subsets, 1LT and 2LT. The 1LT adds body-color exterior trim, rear privacy glass, premium cloth upholstery and a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls. The 2LT package then adds 17-inch chrome-plated wheels, foglamps, remote engine start, a power driver seat and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. The LTZ includes chrome exterior accents, leather seating, heated front seats, an in-dash six-CD changer and a Pioneer premium sound system. For performance fans, the Sport model adds a larger V6, 18-inch aluminum wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, special exterior trim, sport bolstered front seats and unique instrumentation.

Depending on trim level, optional Equinox features include a rear-seat entertainment system, a navigation system and a sunroof.

Powertrains and Performance

All Chevy Equinox trim levels are available with a choice of front-wheel or all-wheel drive. All but the Sport model are equipped with a 3.4-liter V6 engine that makes 185 horsepower and 210 pound-feet of torque, coupled to a five-speed automatic transmission. The Sport model boasts one of the most powerful engines for this class, a 3.6-liter V6 cranking out 264 hp and 250 lb-ft of torque. It's hooked up to a six-speed automatic with manual shift control.

With a 0-60 time of 8.7 seconds, even the smaller V6 provides respectable performance that should please most owners. According to Chevrolet, the 3.6 will do the same sprint in less than 7 ticks, an impressive time for any SUV.

With either engine, towing capacity is a competitive 3,500 pounds. Despite their considerable power disparity, both engines achieve the same EPA fuel economy estimates, which are 17 mpg city/24 mpg highway and 20 mpg combined. Even with the AWD version, the mileage only differs by 1 less city mpg with the 3.6-liter engine.


Antilock disc brakes, traction control, stability control, full-length head curtain airbags and OnStar are standard on all 2009 Chevrolet Equinox trims.

In crash testing, the Equinox earned the highest marks possible, receiving a perfect five stars in National Highway Traffic Safety Administration frontal- and side-impact tests and a highest-possible "Good" rating in Insurance Institute for Highway Safety frontal-offset crash testing.

Interior Design and Special Features

The standard Equinox instrument panel and center stack project a clean, industrial-looking design with large, clear gauges surrounded by faux aluminum accents, while the LT model is warmed up by imitation wood. The Equinox Sport receives exclusive blue-lit instrumentation and ebony accents. The layout is generally straightforward, with GM's ergonomic stereo and climate controls, but the cabin is let down by a lot of low-quality plastic and poorly located cupholders.

With its longer than average wheelbase, the Equinox provides lots of stretch-out room for both rows. To accommodate larger passengers or cargo, the adjustable 60/40-split rear seat slides nearly 8 inches fore and aft. A movable rear cargo shelf functions as a shelf, security cover or picnic table. Out back, the Equinox offers an above-average 35 cubic feet of luggage space behind the rear seats. With the second-row seats folded down, it offers a generous 69 cubic feet of total cargo capacity.

Driving Impressions

The 2009 Chevy Equinox's fully independent suspension setup offers a satisfying balance between ride comfort and competent handling. It dispatches bumps and surface irregularities with ease, and long trips are especially relaxing thanks to its quiet, well-insulated cabin. We find fault with the standard electric power steering, however, which is overly light and slow to respond. The performance-oriented Equinox Sport addresses this criticism with a better-connected hydraulic setup, and of course it's the go-to choice for buyers who expect sharp handling dynamics and versatility in equal measure.


Talk About The 2009 Equinox

2009 Chevrolet Equinox Discussions See all Started By

So is this the only place I get to say my peace....? Last June I purchased a 2010 certified pre owned 2010 chevy equinox ls 4 cylinder. Lets say I am dumb. I was told I had a 5 year or 100,000 mile ...

I just can't make up my mind. Please tell me what your thoughts on the pros and cons. I'm on the fence.........

I just purchased a 2009 Equinox and I love it. I traded in 2 problomatic cars to get it however so every noise I hear I get paranoid. Just recently when I decelerate but don't come to a full stop and ...

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