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Does the 2018 Chevrolet Equinox Improve Blind Spot Visibility?

img 273016085 1474577803367 jpg 2018 Chevrolet Equinox | Cars.com photo by Angela Conners

CARS.COM — With its bulky window pillars and yuge head restraints, the old Chevrolet Equinox landed a last-place finish in our comparison for over-the-shoulder visibility among small SUVs. GM redesigned the Equinox for 2018 with a new chassis that trimmed nearly 5 inches’ length and some 400 pounds’ curb weight, but smaller doesn’t always mean easier to see out of (see: Nissan Juke). Does the new Equinox improve on its predecessor’s sightlines?

Related: 2018 Chevrolet Equinox Review: First Drive

In short, yes. But not as much as it could have. First off, check out the old Equinox’s blind spot.

img 1486637609 1490640398885 jpg 2014 Chevrolet Equinox | Cars.com photo by Kelsey Mays

The redesigned model keeps the thick C- and D-pillars, and roughly similar rear window, but it downsizes the old head restraints, which were about the size of Delaware.

img 1205540389 1490641111163 jpg 2018 Chevrolet Equinox | Cars.com photo by Kelsey Mays

The restraints now release downward, which opens the view. There’s no spring-loaded release to do it from the dashboard, a feature Volvo and a few others offer. So if your passengers deploy them — which they should — and eventually get out, visibility depends on whether you climb in back to flip them down again. (You could also ask your passengers to do it as a courtesy upon leaving, but you’d risk being a subject in one of these forums.)

img 888057651 1490289267966 jpg 2018 Chevrolet Equinox | Cars.com photo by Kelsey Mays

Up front, the Equinox’s A-pillars are as massive as ever. The side mirrors are on the small side, but the upright windshield and thin-frame center mirror help the straight-ahead view.

It helps that the Equinox has a standard backup camera and available surround-view cameras with a pretty good stitched-together view — but nothing beats good visibility in the first place. Absent the current competition, it’s hard to judge how the new Equinox would fare in a visibility rematch, but there’s only one direction to go. The 2018 redesign improved things, but it’s no Subaru Forester. GM has put a lot of its cars through a slimdown, but we’d like to see the General apply the same strategy to its window pillars.

Photo of Kelsey Mays
Former Assistant Managing Editor-News Kelsey Mays likes quality, reliability, safety and practicality. But he also likes a fair price. Email Kelsey Mays

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