Kemna Automotive Group Compares 2018 GMC Acadia VS 2018 Chevrolet Equinox In IA

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2018 GMC Acadia

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2018 GMC Acadia

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2018 Chevrolet Equinox

Safety Comparison

The Acadia Denali’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Equinox doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The Acadia has a standard front seat center airbag, which deploys between the driver and front passenger, protecting them from injuries caused by striking each other in serious side impacts. The Equinox doesn’t offer front seat center airbags.

Both the Acadia and the Equinox have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

The GMC Acadia weighs 629 to 1064 pounds more than the Chevrolet Equinox. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Acadia the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 110 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Equinox has not been tested, yet.

Reliability Comparison

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2016 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that GMC vehicles are more reliable than Chevrolet vehicles. J.D. Power ranks GMC fifth in reliability, above the industry average. With 5 more problems per 100 vehicles, Chevrolet is ranked 6th.

Engine Comparison

The Acadia’s standard 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 23 more horsepower (193 vs. 170) than the Equinox’s standard 1.5 turbo 4 cyl. The Acadia’s optional 3.6 DOHC V6 produces 58 more horsepower (310 vs. 252) and 11 lbs.-ft. more torque (271 vs. 260) than the Equinox’s optional 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

As tested in Car and Driver the GMC Acadia V6 is faster than the Chevrolet Equinox 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.:




Zero to 60 MPH

6.1 sec

6.6 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

6.4 sec

7 sec

Quarter Mile

15 sec

15.1 sec

Top Speed

131 MPH

130 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the GMC Acadia uses regular unleaded gasoline. The Equinox with the 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. engine requires premium for maximum efficiency, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Acadia FWD’s standard fuel tank has 4.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the Equinox FWD’s standard fuel tank (19.4 vs. 14.8 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The Acadia AWD’s standard fuel tank has 6.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the Equinox AWD/Diesel’s standard fuel tank (21.7 vs. 15.6 gallons).

The Acadia has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Equinox doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Acadia’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Equinox:




Front Rotors

12.6 inches

11.8 inches

Rear Rotors

12.4 inches

11.3 inches

The Acadia’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Equinox are solid, not vented.

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Acadia has larger standard tires than the Equinox (235/65R18 vs. 225/65R17). The Acadia’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Equinox (245/65R17 vs. 235/50R19).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Acadia offers optional 20-inch wheels. The Equinox’s largest wheels are only 19-inches.

The GMC Acadia’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Chevrolet Equinox only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Acadia has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the Acadia flat and controlled during cornering. The Equinox’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

The Acadia offers an available driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Equinox’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Acadia’s wheelbase is 5.2 inches longer than on the Equinox (112.5 inches vs. 107.3 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Acadia is 2.3 inches wider in the front and 2.3 inches wider in the rear than on the Equinox.

The Acadia SLT AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Equinox Premier (26.9 seconds @ .67 average G’s vs. 27.7 seconds @ .61 average G’s).

Passenger Space Comparison

The Acadia has standard seating for 7 passengers; the Equinox can only carry 5.

The Acadia has 40.6 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Equinox (143.8 vs. 103.2).

The Acadia has .3 inches more front headroom, .1 inches more front legroom, 1.5 inches more front hip room, 2.2 inches more front shoulder room, 1.1 inches more rear headroom, 1.6 inches more rear hip room and 3.2 inches more rear shoulder room than the Equinox.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Acadia’s cargo area provides more volume than the Equinox.




Third Seat Folded

41.7 cubic feet


Third Seat Removed


29.9 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

79 cubic feet

63.5 cubic feet

The Acadia’s cargo area is larger than the Equinox’s in almost every dimension:




Length to seat (3rd/2nd/1st)



Max Width



Min Width






Ergonomics Comparison

The Acadia’s speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The Equinox’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

The Acadia has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning costs extra on the Equinox.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Acadia Denali offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Equinox doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

Economic Advantages Comparison

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Acadia is less expensive to operate than the Equinox because it costs $72 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Acadia than the Equinox, including $161 less for a water pump, $13 less for an alternator, $11 less for front brake pads, $311 less for a fuel pump and $19 less for front struts.

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