Based on Internet reviews and comments, I bought a 2014 1LT Equinox with the 6-cylinder engine. I now have 600 miles on the vehicle, and am very satisfied. Acceleration is great, it is comfortable and quiet, and it drives and handles well. (On that latter point, I have seen comments about less than precise steering & handling. I have not noticed that in my Equinox, and wonder if that has to do with the fact that the 4-cylinder Equinox has electric power steering, while the 6-cylinder has hydraulic power steering.) BTW, my gas mileage with the V6 has been HIGHER than the EPA estimate - even during break-in. It is now two years later, and I am still very happy with this car. No squeaks, no rattles, no problems, no repairs. The reason that I bought this particular car was the V-6 engine and the premium Pioneer sound system. I have been very happy with both. On the highway, driving from Chicago to Detroit, I averaged 26 to 28 MPG, according to the onboard computer, and had all the power I needed to merge, keep up with traffic and pass when needed, all without high RPMs.
I went through 4 junkers the first year I started driving in 1970 and have owned over 50 cars since. The 2014 Equinox was my first new car and I could not be more pleased. I traded in a high end 2007 GMC Envoy that I loved but got terrible gas mileage. My GMC was a powerful 4 wheel drive tank and I was worried about how the Equinox AWD would handle New England's heavy snowfalls. The winter of 2014-2015 was one of the worst I have dealt with and the Equinox took on the snow, ice and cold without fail. I get around 25 mpg and drive the car pretty hard. For a 4 cylinder it is very quick and I have no complaints.
My wife and I purchased a 2014 1LT in 'candy apple red' with the black/light titanium interior in September of 2014. The only option was the 8-way power driver's seat with the remote start package. Chevy improved this vehicle every way imaginable over our 2005 Equinox, which we LOVED. The ride, the handling, the quality of the seating, the quality of the interior, and all of the included electronic possibilities make this a truly fun vehicle for us to drive.
I looked at and test drove a handful of other small to midsize SUV's thinking i was finally going to get what i REALLY wanted and not be penny pinching this time around (within reason). Nissan, Acura, BMW, to name a few and couldn't help but come back to Chevy. The functionality and beautiful design far surpassed the others. I'm almost 3 years in - coming to the end of the lease - and if it makes sense, will definitely consider keeping it. There a few minor things I'm not crazy about: an optional piece had to be added between the back seat and cargo area to keep things from slipping between the large space between. There is molding that is coming loose on the front passenger side underneath the door jamb. Sometimes when using blue tooth to play music, it gets stuck saying the song has been paused and i have to close the music on i-tunes and restart it for some unknown reason. Other than that, i couldn't be happier - no major issues and she's nice to look at too!
I have owned minivans, big suv's, and cars. The Equinox is "medium sized." MPG in normal driving is 24, highway 28. Ride is comfortable even for trips. Decent room for 5. Rear cargo area is adequate. Only complaint is a leaking rear shock which was replaced under warranty. After hearing about some internal engine oil passage ways being a little undersized subject to restricting oil flow causing early timing chain failure I started changing oil at 5000-6000 miles . Oil monitor reaches 20%. I always use synthetic oil. Prefer Mobil extended, Pennzoil, etc. Cleaned throttle body and new spark plugs at 50,000 miles. Still runs like new.