The next time you’re behind the wheel, take a look around and count the number of compact SUVs you see on the road. It’s no surprise that compact SUVs are the most popular vehicles in the automotive industry because they offer sedan-like handling and efficiency with ample room for passengers and cargo. Automakers like Chevrolet and Honda have perfected this balance and give you the best of both worlds, as you’ll discover when comparing the 2022 Chevy Equinox vs 2022 Honda CR-V.
While your search for a compact SUV might’ve started with the Honda CR-V, there’s a good chance it will end with the Chevy Equinox. Honda’s reputation in the American automotive industry is exceptional, but nothing compares to everything Chevrolet has to offer. Since its early founding in America in the 1900s, Chevy has established its reputation for building reliable vehicles at affordable prices. The 2022 Equinox continues that tradition with a modern twist.
Refreshed for 2022, the Equinox features bold exterior styling along with an all-new RS trim that puts the family-friendly SUV in stealth mode. You’ll find a host of updates to the interior as well as innovative technology and advanced safety and driver-assist tools that keep you informed, connected, and safe when you’re behind the wheel. These changes are a stark contrast to the Honda CR-V that remains unchanged for 2022.
How else do the models compare? From trims and technology to performance, handling, and safety features, there are quite a few differences between these best-selling compact SUVs. Here’s everything you need to know about the models and why you’ll want to put the 2022 Chevy Equinox at the top of your shopping list.
The 2022 Equinox lineup proves that Chevy is acutely aware of what drivers want and need in a compact SUV. The Equinox combines sophistication and luxury with affordability and innovation. That’s apparent across the four-trim lineup from the entry-level LS to all-new trims like the RS.
You can get behind the wheel of the 2022 Equinox LS for $25,800, which is an exceptional value.[a] The Equinox’s entry-level model is far from basic and features wireless smartphone integration, LED headlamps for maximum visibility, and Chevrolet’s renowned Safety Assist suite. Parents of teen drivers will want to take a closer look at the Equinox LS since it comes standard with Chevy's exclusive Teen Driver Technology. The feature allows parents to set parameters and receive driving style reports to help their teens become better drivers.
Upgrading the Equinox LT adds LED daytime running lamps and several conveniences like a power driver’s seat with lumbar support and a multi-color driver information display. The RS is all-new for 2022 and is instantly recognizable with its black exterior trim and 19-inch Dark Android wheels. Inside, its black interior features red accent stitching. It also adds LED taillamps, a rear power liftgate, and advanced tools like Front and Rear Park Assist.
The Equinox Premier takes luxury to the next level and equips the SUV with the Chevrolet Infotainment 3 Plus system and an expansive 8-inch color touchscreen display. It replaces the rear power liftgate with a hands-free option that makes it easy to open the gate even when your hands are full. It further distinguishes itself with its 18-inch Machined-Face aluminum wheels.
Looking at the 2022 CR-V, you’ll have to spend quite a bit more to enjoy the same features. The LX starts the CR-V lineup at $26,400 and comes standard with the Honda Sensing suite of safety features. However, to enjoy smartphone integration, a power driver’s seat, and advanced tools like blind spot monitoring requires spending more money on trims like the EX and EX-L, the latter of which also features a power tailgate.
The CR-V Touring is the top of the line for the SUV and comes standard with all-wheel drive, a hands-free power tailgate, and wireless phone charging. While the Equinox features blacked-out trims like the all-new RS, you’ll have to opt for the CR-V Special Edition if you’re looking for something unique. Even then, the Special Edition doesn’t distinguish itself by design and, instead, adds features like smartphone integration that already comes standard across the Equinox lineup.
Drivers are often drawn to compact SUVs like the Equinox and CR-V because, despite their larger size, they offer sedan-like handling and responsive performance. You get the spaciousness of an SUV without the sluggish performance. It’s like having your cake and eating it too.
This is undoubtedly the case for the 2022 Equinox as Chevy equips the SUV with a 1.5-liter turbo four-cylinder engine that churns out 170 horsepower and 203 lb-ft of torque. This power makes the Equinox an agile performer whether you’re navigating city traffic or cruising at highway speeds. Its torque ensures you have the pull and strength you need to accelerate and climb steep ascents. This capability extends when you opt for the Equinox with Chevy’s switchable all-wheel drive that maximizes power and traction to make the Equinox more than capable of handling slippery conditions.
While automakers like Honda are turning to continuously variable transmissions, Chevy stays true to its roots and equips the 2022 Equinox with a six-speed automatic transmission. This is a worthy distinction because it gives you a wider range of power and improved performance without sacrificing efficiency. With seamless gear shifting, the Equinox delivers the power you need exactly when you need it. It also minimizes fuel consumption, with the Equinox averaging 26 MPG in the city and 31 MPG on the highway.
Like the 2022 Equinox, you’ll find only one powertrain option in the CR-V’s 2022 lineup, and that’s a 1.5-liter turbocharged engine. Honda’s turbo doesn’t skimp on power and delivers 190 horses and 179 lb-ft of torque, the latter of which is a far cry from the Equinox’s 203 lb-ft of torque. While the CR-V’s higher horsepower rating means more immediate power, the CR-V’s lower torque rating means it struggles to hold that power for very long. The Equinox, however, can easily get to speed and maintain that power even when faced with a steep climb or towing a modest-sized load.
Honda pairs the CR-V’s 1.5-liter turbo engine to a continuously variable transmission (CVT). By nature, CVTs are relatively new to the automotive industry and are more akin to automatic transmissions in that they don’t require any input (manual shifting) from the driver. By relying on pulleys that connect the transmission to the wheels and engine, the CVT optimizes efficiency over performance regardless of the condition. Since Honda makes efficiency a priority over performance and handling, it’s no surprise that the CR-V comes equipped with a CVT.
With the CVT, the CR-V isn’t as fun or engaging to drive because it doesn’t offer shift points that you can feel or sport-like handling that many drivers enjoy. The CR-V’s CVT also makes the SUV a bit louder as it forces the engine to run at a high rpm to reach speed. And, by nature of its design, the CVT is faster to wear and more expensive to repair, which means spending more of your hard-earned money.
Technology levels the playing field between the 2022 Equinox and the 2022 CR-V. Chevy and Honda outfit their SUVs with a wide range of connectivity, safety, and driver-assist features. These tools vary according to trim and not only keep you connected and informed but also aware and safe when you’re behind the wheel. These tools range from advanced airbags and high-definition rearview cameras to smartphone integration and navigation.
Chevy equips every trim in the Equinox lineup with wireless smartphone integration via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. This eliminates the need to use a USB cable to sync your smartphone with the SUV, saving you time and reducing clutter in the cabin. You won’t find this feature on the CR-V, but the top-tier Touring trim offers wireless smartphone charging. Another notable difference between the models is that the Equinox offers Built-In Amazon Alexa. This feature lets you use simple voice commands to stream music, make calls, respond to messages, navigate your route, and more without taking your hands off the wheel or your eyes off the road.
Whether you’re behind the wheel of the Equinox or the CR-V, your smartphone apps and other in-vehicle tools are accessible via a center touchscreen display. The CR-V comes equipped with a 5-inch display, but a 7-inch touchscreen with navigation is available. The Equinox’s touchscreen display is significantly larger and ranges from the 7-inch standard display to the 8-inch display with navigation.
Aside from connectivity features, you’ll also find the Equinox and CR-V offer a suite of safety and driver-assist technology that enhances your visibility and actively minimizes the potential for collision. The Equinox features the Chevy Safety Assist suite while the CR-V features the Honda Sensing suite, similar tools with brand-specific names. What do we mean?
The Chevy Safety Assist suite includes Automatic Emergency Braking, a Following Distance Indicator, Front Pedestrian Braking, Forward Collision Alert, Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning, and IntelliBeam automatic headlamps. Optional upgrades include Front and Rear Park Assist, Adaptive Cruise Control, an HD Surround Vision Camera, Lane Change Alert with Side Blind Zone Alert, and Rear Cross Traffic Alert. The Equinox also comes standard with Teen Driver Technology.
The CR-V’s Honda Sensing Suite features many of the same features, like the Collision Mitigation Braking System that mimics Chevy’s Automatic Emergency Braking and Forward Collision Alert. The Honda Sensing suite also includes a Road Departure Mitigation System, Adaptive Cruise Control with Low-Speed Follow, and a Lane-Keeping Assist System. You won’t find anything comparable to Chevy’s Teen Driver Technology, making the Equinox an excellent option for parents with young drivers at home.