By Darrell Larome Williams (NNPA/DTU Journalism Fellow)
The 2018 Chevrolet Equinox should be in every neighborhood across the country. Chevrolet has continued to develop advanced vehicles to meet the needs of a diverse group of drivers and their different lifestyles. It was love at first sight, when the National Newspaper Publishers Association’s (NNPA) “Discover The Unexpected” (DTU) fellows saw the SUV in person. After being introduced to all of its technology features and design functions, we drove the Equinox for the entire day to experience them ourselves.
This is the third generation of the Equinox and Chevrolet improved the design, safety and technology features, and overall performance of this vehicle. The third-generation model of the Equinox has been “made for everybody” as Chevrolet states, but singles, young families, and “empty nesters” would especially enjoy the versatility and design. Creative planners and drivers that are budget conscious might also find the Equinox’s many technical features enticing. The Equinox would also be a great fit for college students or recent graduates, as well. Depending on the needs and wants of the driver, Chevrolet has created four different models of the Equinox (L, LS, LT model and Premier). I was able to drive and experience the Premier and I was extremely satisfied with the performance of the vehicle.
I was immediately impressed with the vibrant and tasteful color of the orange burst metallic color of the exterior with chrome accents on both the inside and outside of the vehicle. The keyless open and start feature was a nice addition. The engine is so quiet, that you can easily forget that the car is still running. The smooth leather interior seating, steering wheel, and dashboard were the perfect touch to the style of the vehicle and added to its sophistication. The clean and crisp Equinox display also caught my attention as the product specialist assisted me with connecting my Samsung phone to the car with Android Auto.
Connecting to Android Auto allowed me to:
• Access my contacts and make calls
• Respond to texts hands-free
• Utilize my personal GPS
• Perform Google searches
• And even use apps like Pandora to play music
Before the drive began, we checked out some of the other features like the panoramic sunroof; that was definitely a favorite for all of the passengers. The weather was hot and we weren’t driving too fast for heavy breezes to flow through the car so we definitely got to use the ventilated front seats; I’ve seen heated seats before, but the ventilated seats were a first for me. The steering wheel had a heating option as well. There were multiple USB charging ports as well as power outlets.
As I reversed from the building to begin the drive, the dashboard display changed to the rear-view camera to assist me with backing out; this feature was extremely helpful as well as the Safety Alert Seat that vibrated when I got too close to something in the rear of the vehicle. I do have a concern that the vibration may distract some drivers or even scare them. The vibrating feature of the Safety Alert Seat may take some drivers a little time to get used to.
When you stop at a red light, the new stop-start fuel-saving feature puts the vehicle in a sleep-mode that saves gas as your car idles. I experienced this feature while driving another Chevrolet model car and thought that something was wrong with the engine at first. Now that I know what the feature is and how it works, I am confident to say that this is one of my favorite features of the Equinox. The next time I take the Equinox out, I definitely want to try the hands-free gesture liftgate, too. A simple kick gesture under the bumper in the back will open the back gate. You can also set the height of the liftgate and save the height to memory.
Chevrolet has made it a priority to make sure that the design and safety of the vehicle are of the highest quality. They have equipped the Equinox with incredible safety features to make sure drivers feel safe and comfortable and encourage better driving habits.
Chevrolet is the most-awarded car company three years in a row, based on recognized industry awards for 2014-2016 year-end totals. I can’t wait to “Find New Roads” with the 2018 Chevrolet Equinox this summer.
To learn more about NNPA “Discover The Unexpected” Journalism Fellowship program, visit www.nnpa.org/dtu.
Darrell Williams is a 2017 NNPA/DTU Journalism Fellow and Morehouse College student, who is creating content for The Louisiana Weekly this summer. Follow Darrell on Twitter @darrell_larome.