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Holden Equinox

Holden Equinox LTZ in Son of a Gun Grey – great name!

OK, I’ll say that I’m kind of biased towards the Holden Equinox right from the get-go.  I like SUVs, especially the ones that really can do the business of going off-road a bit with the dog.  I like things that claim to have been “made for real life”.  And how can I resist a nice quirky name like “Equinox” that boasts “Son of A Gun Grey” as one of its colour options?  And now I see that one of several variants in the lineup includes a 1.6-L turbo diesel (coming soon) with AWD and 9-speed automatic transmission, I’m getting very excited indeed.

Right.  Be still my beating heart.  It’s always wise to have a close look at what a vehicle has before you run off to the dealers for a test drive or to fork out one’s hard-earned cash (or, to be a bit more realistic, to sign up for a finance plan).  Is the Holden Equinox really the right car for me and for you?  Let’s explore it together and see.

OK, we need to start by choosing the variant.  Here, you have to play the trim level off against the drivetrain a bit, as the basic models (LS, LS+ and LT) come in front wheel drive only, and it’s not until you go up the ranks to the LTZ and the LTZ-V (the Equinox LTZ-V is the top of the range model and the name would also be a winner on the Scrabble board).  If you like to have all the bells and whistles as well as the off-roading ability, this isn’t a problem.  However, if you’re less fussed about gadgetry but want 4×4 ability, you have to decide whether skimping on fun extras is worth foregoing the AWD.  If, however, you mostly do city driving and you want a good all-round family-friendly vehicle, then the LT is likely to be the one for you.  The other thing to consider is fuel type, as the LT comes in petrol only, whereas the others have a diesel option.

One also needs to consider the engine size and to see what fits with your driving style and needs.  First up, you’ve got the 1.5-L turbo petrol in the LS and the LS+. Move along to the LT and you’ve got the possibility of a 2-L petrol engine, which you also get inside the LTZ and LTZ-V. At the time of writing, the 1.6-L turbo diesel isn’t yet available (it must be coming along later in 2018) and I’m sure it’s going to be good but I’d like the details if possible, especially the torque stats, as we do a bit of towing. Anyway, with the existing line-up is still pretty good.  The 1.5-L turbo engine has a maximum power output of 127 kW at 5600 rpm compared with the 2.0-L’s 1’8 kW at 5500.  The 2.0-L has better torque for towing (2-tonne towing capacity) with 353 Nm in the 2500–4500 rpm range, although the 1.5-L is still quite respectable in this department with 275 Nm at 2000–4000 rpm. With these figures for petrol engines, I can’t wait to see what the diesel can do.  Hurry up, Holden!  Maybe they’re waiting – appropriately enough – for the March equinox to tell us more.

Fuel economy is another important consideration for a lot of people – it certainly is for me.  Of course, this depends on where and how you drive your Holden Equinox when while carrying what and who, but the test stats are still helpful for making comparisons and choosing which model of Equinox is for you.  This will depend on your transmission type: 6-speed manual or auto in the LS, 6-speed auto only in the LS+, or 9-speed auto in the LT, LTZ and LTZ-V.  Having start/stop function as standard on all models helps in the fuel economy department across the board.  The most frugal (combined consumption) option is the 1.5-L engine with either manual or auto, with 6.9 L/100 km.  The other end of the spectrum – and it’s a pretty narrow spectrum – is the 2-L with AWD and 9-speed auto, which slurps through 8.4 L/100 km (the 2WD is close with 8.2 L/100 km).  Not bad for a big, practical SUV!

The Holden Equinox is likely to be a vehicle that everybody drives, including the learner drivers.  It’s good to see that it’s got plenty of safety features in even the most basic variant, such as the electronic stability control package featuring ABS brakes, EBD, brake assistance and traction control, and airbags all over the place.  It’s got plenty of driver aids as well, but you probably don’t want to tell your learner driver too much about these if you have anything but the LS variant, which only gets a rear view camera, rear parking assistance and power steering.  One needs to learn how to drive without the full suite that’s available in everything else, like the front parking assistance (not found in the LS+), the blind spot alert, the rear cross traffic detector, the following distance indicator, lane keep assistance, lane departure warning, autonomous emergency braking and forward collision alert.

When it comes to bells and whistles, even the base model LS has plenty on offer, including Apple Car Play and Android Auto connectivity and a 7-inch touchscreen, LED daytime running lights, passive entry, steering wheel mounted audio controls and a pretty decent 6-speaker sound system.  Go up to the LS+ and you get a bit more leather (the steering wheel) as well as the upgraded driver assistance gadgets mentioned above.  In the LT, you get a bigger touchscreen (and bigger alloys – 18 inches instead of 17 inches), embedded satnav, dual zone climate control, remote engine starting and all of four USB charge points (no more fights about whose phone or tablet needs to be charged most urgently).  The LTZ throws in even bigger wheels (19 inches), a Bose speaker system, wireless phone charging, heated seats in the rear, the power tailgate that Holden’s very proud of, and roof rails. If you want the full shebang, then the LTZ-V adds in a powered sunroof, a heated steering wheel and ventilated front seats as well as having full-time AWD capability.

No matter which variant of Holden Equinox you choose, you get plenty of space for people, the dog and the luggage.  The rear seats (it’s a five-seater) fold flat, so you could easily sleep in the back if you wanted to.

My choice out of the current selection in the Holden Equinox lineup would probably be the LTZ because I really like having a bit of AWD ability as well as the ability to tow stuff.  However, that sunroof in the LTZ-V is kind of tempting…  Of course, when the diesels arrive, then you and I will have even more to choose from.

Current model series include:

  • Holden Equinox LS manual
  • Holden Equinox LS auto
  • Holden Equinox LS+
  • Holden Equinox LT
  • Holden Equinox LTZ FWD
  • Holden Equinox LTZ AWD
  • Holden Equinox LTZ-V AWD

For any more information on the

Holden Equinox LTZ in Son of a Gun Grey – great name!

, or for that matter any other new car, contact one of our friendly consultants on 1300 303 181. If you’d like some fleet discount pricing (yes even for private buyers!), we can submit vehicle quotes requests out to our national network of Holden dealers and come back with pricing within 24 hours. Private Fleet – car buying made easy!