Thursday, 29 September 2022

Compact SUVs are one of the most reliably successful sellers in today’s automotive ecosystem, putting up some of the biggest overall numbers once you get past the top-selling trucks.

Chevy’s Equinox competes in this tough segment — battling a bevy of competitors including the Nissan Rogue, Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4 and Ford Escape.

For those buyers who remain loyal to the U.S. “Big Three” options, the Equinox emerges as one of the top competitors in the segment. While not completely redesigned, the 2022 Equinox does get some minor refreshes and offers a bold new RS trim level.

I recently spent some time behind the wheel of a 2022 Equinox RS, and I’m back with a full report on how it holds up in the segment.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

With a multi-year run as one of the best-selling SUVs, it would have been tempting for Toyota to not tinker with the RAV4 lineup. But with competitors always stepping up their game, so must Toyota.

One new angle they introduced for the 2020 model year is the TRD Off-Road trim level. At first it’s a shock to hear the words “TRD” and “Off-Road” associated with the traditionally more mundane SUV segment, but it’s a wise move by Toyota to grow the vehicle’s brand with a new option aimed at more adventurous types.

I recently spent some time in a 2020 Toyota RAV4 TRD Off-Road, and I’m back with a full report.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

If we’re talking about Hyundai SUVs, most of the focus in recent months is on the Palisade, Hyundai’s new full-size three-row model that was a finalist for the NACTOY Utility of the Year. But the good news for Hyundai, and the SUV-buying public, is that even if the Palisade isn’t the best fit for all consumers, there’s plenty of strength throughout Hyundai’s SUV lineup.

Once such example is the midsize Santa Fe, which got a full redesign in 2019 and sees minor changes for 2020. I recently spent some time in a Santa Fe, and I’m back with a full report on how it compares in this highly competitive segment.

LOOKS

The exterior design of the Santa Fe is svelte and elegant, yet still a bit imposing at the same time.

I was impressed with the quality of the materials used on the interior, which was approaching near-luxury territory on the Limited trim level that I tested. Highlights included a heated and leather-wrapped steering wheel and extremely comfortable leather seating. You also get heated front and rear seats, ventilated front seats, push-button start, manual rear sunshades, and a long and attractive panoramic sunroof

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

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