You’re in the market for an SUV, but you aren’t excited about the idea of getting behind the wheel of a gas-guzzling behemoth like the Suburban. Fortunately, you don’t have to, as automakers like Chevy and Hyundai answer the growing demand from drivers like you who are looking for compact SUVs that are spacious and capable like their full-size counterparts but offer the efficiency and comforts of a sedan. The Chevy Equinox and Hyundai Tucson offer all this and much more, making these two options a great starting point in your search. But which one is better? That’s the question we’ll answer in this epic showdown of the 2022 Chevy Equinox vs 2022 Hyundai Tucson.
Affordability and Value
The first major difference between the 2022 Equinox and the 2022 Tucson is value and affordability. Chevy completely redesigned the Equinox for 2022 to give it a more modern aesthetic both inside and out. The small SUV is truly larger than life and is replete with the latest technology and features, all of which add exceptional value to its starting price of $25,800. This puts you behind the wheel of the Equinox LS that comes standard with the Chevy Safety Assist suite, LED headlamps, Teen Driver technology, and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. The Equinox lineup also offers a performance-inspired trim known as the RS, as well as the top-of-the-line Premier that delivers exceptional luxury with leather seating.
The 2022 Tucson is only slightly lower in price, with a starting MSRP of $25,350 for the SE base model. The SE comes standard with Hyundai’s basic safety features and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. However, to truly enjoy the Tucson’s innovative technology and driver-assist tools requires a significant jump in price to the top-tier Limited trim. A performance-focused trim like the Equinox’s RS is available in the form of the new Tucson N-Line, but it carries a slightly higher price than its Chevy counterpart.
Performance and Transmission
The 2022 Equinox is powered by a 1.5-liter turbocharged engine that’s mated to a six-speed automatic transmission to deliver 170 horsepower and 203 lb-ft of torque. This torque makes the Equinox quick to accelerate and agile both in town and on the highway. The Equinox’s transmission is what’s known as a manually controlled automatic, which allows you to switch the Equinox into a manual drive mode and control the SUV’s shifts without a clutch. This gives you more control over the SUV and how it performs.
The Equinox delivers more torque than the Tucson, which is important when you’re looking for smooth acceleration and agility. The Tucson is powered by a 2.5-liter non-turbocharged engine that’s mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. This combination delivers 187 horsepower and 178 lb-ft of torque for modest acceleration.
Handling and Suspension
Another important difference between the Equinox and the Tucson is how the SUVs handle. The Equinox is smaller than the Tucson, but this isn’t a negative mark against the SUV. The Equinox’s makes it easier to maneuver and more agile in tighter areas like busy urban centers. The Chevy’s stature lends to its tighter turning radius or the space it needs to complete a turn. As the stats show, the Equinox has a turning radius of 37.4 feet, while the Tucson requires 38.6 feet to complete a turn. This difference can make a significant impact when you’re navigating a busy city where streets are narrow, and traffic is heavy.
While the Equinox comes standard with front-wheel drive, you can extend the SUV’s capability by opting for the switchable all-wheel drive model that gives you more stability and traction on rainy, muddy, or other slick surfaces. The upgrade is particularly impressive because it doesn’t drastically affect the Equinox’s efficiency. This is partly due to the Equinox’s aerodynamic design.
The Equinox features a new front grille and fascia as part of its 2022 redesign. This redesign equips the Equinox with available electronically controlled shutters positioned behind the grille. When the engine is operating at its ideal temperature, the shutters automatically close to reduce airflow and drag, which improves the Equinox’s efficiency on the highway. Front-wheel drive models are rated for 26 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the highway, while all-wheel drive models average 25 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway.
Active grille shutters would make the Tucson more efficient, but Hyundai doesn’t offer this feature. Instead, the Tucson’s larger size and engine demand more fuel, with all-wheel drive models getting 24 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway. Also equipped with a smaller 14.6-gallon fuel tank compared to the Equinox’s 15.6-gallon tank, you’ll spend more time and money filling up the Tucson.
Safety features level the playing field between the 2022 Equinox and the 2022 Tuscon as both Chevy and Hyundai remain committed to delivering the most innovative safety features available. For Chevy, this is centralized in the Chevy Safety Assist suite that comes standard on every Equinox in the lineup. The suite includes Automatic Emergency Braking, a Following Distance Indicator, Forward Collision Alert, Front Pedestrian Braking, Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning, and IntelliBeam automatic high beams.
Automatic Emergency Braking works with Forward Collision Alert and Front Pedestrian Braking to bring the Equinox to an emergency stop when a collision is imminent. The Following Distance Indicator alerts you if you’re following too closely while Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning helps you keep the Equinox safely in its lane. Other available tools include an HD Surround vision camera that gives you a 360-degree view around the SUV.
The Tucson’s standard safety features are fewer than that of the Equinox. The Smart Sense Safety suite comes standard with Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist with Pedestrian and Cyclist Detection, Lane Keeping Assist, High Beam Assist, Driver Attention Warning, and Rear Occupant Alert. To have greater confidence behind the wheel requires upgrading to top-tier trims or adding a variety of available tools. These tools include Blind-Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist, Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist, Safe Exit Warning, Smart Cruise Control with Stop & Go, Ultrasonic Rear Occupant Alert, and Remote Parking Assist.
Chevy Wins the Race
The 2022 Chevy Equinox and the 2022 Hyundai Tucson have a lot to offer. They’re both well equipped with innovative technology and plenty of luxuries and conveniences that make your time on the road more enjoyable. So, which one comes out ahead? There’s one last factor to consider, and that’s Chevy’s reputation.
Founded in 1911, the Chevrolet Motor Car Company was launched to deliver unprecedented performance and affordability to Americans across the country. Chevy has done exactly that over the last century and has revolutionized the American automotive landscape every step of the way. Just look at Chevy’s small-block V8 engine that established a new benchmark of performance and capability in the industry.
This ingenuity and innovation are at the heart of Chevrolet even today, and it’s what you’ll find in the Equinox, a stunning and capable SUV that’s ready for your next adventure. It’s this reputation that pushes the Equinox to the finish line and legions ahead of the Tucson for the title as the best compact SUV. When you buy a Chevy, you know exactly what you’re getting – reliability, versatility, capability, and power, mile after mile.