Consumer Reports Says Avoid This Popular SUV Pick

Popularity doesn’t always equal quality. In the auto world, a successful car isn’t always the best choice when you need a new vehicle. What’s more important than sales numbers and popularity? A car’s design quality, performance, and reliability. When it comes to SUVs, you need one that will be around for the long haul.

It’s more important to find a quality, less-popular vehicle than a popular car you’ll waste money on. When it comes to a specific popular model, Consumer Reports warns you not to be fooled. It’s the worst SUV to choose.

The popular SUV you should avoid

People around the world first got a look at the Chevrolet Equinox at the 2003 Detroit Auto Show. The crossover SUV made its debut for the 2005 model year, and it’s been a best-selling vehicle for years. In fact, in 2018, more than 300,000 sold in the U.S. alone, reports GM Authority. Equinox sales have slowly increased over the years, with Chevrolet marketing it as an affordable, family-friendly SUV.

According to Business Insider, the Equinox is comparable in popularity to best-selling SUVs like the Toyota Highlander, which sold over 215,000 in 2017; the Ford Explorer, which sold more than 270,000; and the Honda CR-V, which sold more than 377,000. The Chevrolet Equinox sits among the top-performers, selling just over 290,000 in 2017. This begs the question: Why is Consumer Reports calling the Equinox the worst SUV?

Why Consumer Reports says to avoid the Chevrolet Equinox

Popular cars may sell, but this doesn’t make them the best long-term options. As Consumer Reports explains, a vehicle may be popular for a variety of reasons. It can be made from an automaker you trust, offer deals, or simply be available via many dealer networks. All of these factors don’t necessarily mean you’ll get a great vehicle. According to Consumer Reports research, you should avoid the Equinox

Though the Chevrolet Equinox is affordable when compared to the competition, its overall owner satisfaction and reliability ratings lag behind. Consumer Reports gives the 2019 Equinox a lackluster overall rating of 66 (out of 100). In addition, the SUV received a road-test rating of only 78 and a score of 3 (out of 5) for both reliability and owner satisfaction. These scores fall right in the middle of the competition. Looking at the history of the Equinox, Consumer Reports doesn’t report anything “great” about it.

But Consumer Reports doesn’t just rate vehicles; it also found that the Equinox has a variety of issues that trace back to its debut. Owners report having problems with the Equinox’s engine, transmission, and in-car electronics. According to, there are currently 17 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration safety recalls on the Chevrolet Equinox.

Alternative SUVs that won’t disappoint

Instead of going with the crowd, some alternatives may be a better choice for you. For instance, Consumer Reports finds that the Subaru Forester consistently receives better overall scores for safety and reliability, even though it lacks the same sales numbers as the Equinox. Larger SUVs that come with great ratings from Consumer Reports include the Toyota Highlander and Kia Sorento.