Midsize SUV; Built in USA
  • 4-door wagon
  • transverse front-engine/front- or all-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $5,900 – $18,500*

2005 Chevrolet Equinox

2005 Chevrolet Equinox

2005 Chevrolet Equinox

2005 Chevrolet Equinox

  • Cargo room
  • Rear-seat room
  • Steering/handling

Sloppy steering and handling make Equinox and its Pontiac Torrent cousin feel like cumbersome trucks, even though these SUVs have car-type chassis. Both also lack the mechanical finesse of competitors such as the Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander. On the upside, Equinox and Torrent have an absorbent ride, versatile interiors, and prices that undercut those of most midsize rivals.


Equinox debuted for 2005 as a smaller, less-expensive midsize-SUV companion to Chevrolet’s TrailBlazer. It shared its car-type platform with the Vue from GM’s Saturn division, but has a longer wheelbase and body, and has steel body panels in place of Vue’s plastic. Equinox seated five; no 3rd-row seat was offered. The rear seat slid fore and aft 8 inches to maximize passenger or cargo space. The one-piece rear hatch did not include opening glass. Equinox came in LS and uplevel LT trims, both with front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive without low-range gearing. A 185-hp V6 and 5-speed automatic transmission made up the sole powertrain. Traction control was standard on the front-drive LT, optional as part of the ABS option on the front-drive LS. ABS was standard on all but the front-drive LS. Curtain side airbags are optional. Available features include leather upholstery, heated front seats, satellite radio, and OnStar assistance.

Yearly Updates

2006 Equinox
Antilock brakes became standard on all versions of the Equinox for 2006.
2007 Equinox
Equinox got a revised suspension and interior appearance and added safety features for 2007. An antiskid system and rear disc brakes were newly available for ’07 and were standard. A revised suspension and steering system were designed to improve ride and handling response. Curtain side airbags were optional and now included rollover deployment. Equinox’s instrument panel, radio, and climate controls got redesigned. A navigation system and remote engine start were newly available.
2008 Equinox
The 2008 Chevrolet Equinox gained a pair of new models, one bent toward luxury, the other toward performance. Added were the luxury-themed LTZ and high-performance Sport. Other models carried on with few changes, though a wireless cell-phone link was newly available.
2009 Equinox
The 2009 Equinox is largely unchanged pending a redesign for 2010.


transverse front-engine/front- or all-wheel drive

Equinox teams a 185-hp 3.4-liter V6 engine with a 5-speed automatic transmission.

ohv V6
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.4/204
Engine HP 185
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 210
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed automatic



Road Test

Despite having less horsepower than most of its rivals, Equinox furnishes lively takeoffs and smooth passing response. A test front-drive LT did 8.8 sec 0-60 mph. Expect the slightly heavier AWD versions to be a bit slower.

Fuel economy is above average for the class. Front and AWD test models averaged 18.0 mpg.

Also above average is Equinox’s ride. This SUV benefits from its long wheelbase and comfort-biased suspension tuning. At the same time, that softness is a detriment to its handling. Body lean in turns is pronounced, and the steering suffers from vague feel. The available AWD is a wet-weather bonus but is not meant for serious off roading.

Equinox is no more or less quiet than other midsize SUVs. Some testers believe the V6 engine sounds coarse in full-throttle acceleration. Others complain of tire roar and body drumming over rough pavement.

The interior is a mixed bag. Most materials are appropriate for the price, but the cabin still has a cut-rate feel due to some hard plastic surfaces and imprecise switchgear movement. The power window switches are located on the console with the automatic transmission lever, which some testers feel is inconvenient.

Seat comfort is good, with generous head and leg room both front and rear. The reclining, adjustable rear seat is a comfort plus. Visibility is hindered by thick front and rear pillars. And while the rear seats don’t fold completely flat, Equinox has a flexible cargo hold. A fold-flat front passenger seat allows loading of longer items, and an adjustable height cargo shelf adds to cargo carrying options.


Model Tested: 2005 Chevrolet Equinox LT AWD w/17-inch wheels

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.


Acceleration - 5
Fuel Economy - 5
Ride Quality - 6
Steering/Handling - 4
Quietness - 5


Controls/Materials - 6
Room/Comfort Front - 6
Room/Comfort Rear - 6
Cargo Room - 7


Value - 6

Total: 56


4-door wagon
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
112.5 188.8 71.4 67.0
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
68.6 16.6 5
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
40.9 40.1 41.2 40.2
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 2005 Equinox 4-door wagon


(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - 5
Front Passenger Injury - 5

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
Rear Passenger Injury - N/A


(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision N/A
Injury N/A
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Fuel gauge
Description: The engine may not start or may stall because the tank is empty yet the gauge shows fuel remaining, or the fuel gauge will not show full after refilling due to sulfur corrosion of the fuel level sender and if after treating with Fuel System Cleaner PLUS the problem remains, the sender may need to be replaced. (2005-06)
Vehicle noise
Description: Rattling noise from the front end is caused by bad bushings for brake caliper pins. (2005-06)
Vehicle noise
Description: Noise from the front accompanied by sensation felt in steering wheel may be due to insufficient steering rack preload. (2005)
Windshield washer
Description: The windshield washers may work poorly or quit working because the filter on the pump gets clogged, and continued attempted use may burn out the pump. (2007-08)
Description: The windshield wipers may only work on one speed and/or the other functions on the turn signal stalk may quit due to voltage spike from the wiper motor damaging the body control module. (2007)
Electrical problem
Description: The PCM was being replaced for a defective chip under a voluntary emissions recall because it affected the fuel pump and EGR system. (2005)
Electrical problem
Description: The check engine light may come on, due to failure of the EGR valve. The Delphi valve is to be replaced with a Seimens valve kit and have the PCM flashed. (2005-06)
Electrical problem
Description: The DVD monitors in the front seat headrests may quit working because the video feed cable comes loose requiring installation of cable clamps. (2007-08)
Electrical problem
Description: When using a portable music player (e.g. iPod) there may be noise in the car’s speakers whenever the vehicle’s power adapter is used and a ground loop isolator (from Radio Shack) is required between the device and the power outlet to prevent the noise. (2005-07)
Description: The hatch may be hard to open in cold weather (below freezing) due to problems with the support struts. (2005-07)
Description: The navigation radio screen may have a variety of problems such as going blank, map reading errors, opening screen may constantly refresh, etc. due to software glitches. (2007-09)

Recall History

2005 Equinox
Description: Improperly-seated fitting can prevent ignition key park lock cable auto-set from correctly adjusting the cable; can keep shifter from locking in “Park” position when key is removed. Dealer will inspect and adjust the cable.
2005 Equinox
Description: An incorrect primer may have been used when installing the windshield, liftgate glass, and the side stationary glass. In the event of a crash, the windshield may not be retained to the extent required by safety standards. Dealers will replace the windshield, the liftgate glass, and the side stationary glass.
2007 Equinox without roof rail airbags or sunroof
Description: An interior surface falls short of a Federal safety standard and poses an increased risk of head injury in a crash. Dealers will install an energy-absorbing foam piece to each of the A-pillar trim assemblies.
2007 Equinoxes registered in certain states
Description: Some of these vehicles have a plastic supply or return port on the fuel pump module which may crack, potentially causing a fuel leak and increasing risk of a fire.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.


Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.

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