2020 Chevrolet Equinox vs. 2019 Mercedes GLC

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the Chevrolet Equinox’s rear seat shoulder belts have child comfort guides to move the belt to properly fit children. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages children to buckle up. The Mercedes GLC doesn’t offer comfort guides on its rear seat belts.

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Equinox are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The GLC doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

To help make backing safer, the Equinox (except L/LS)’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The GLC doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

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

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Chevrolet Equinox is safer than the Mercedes GLC:

Equinox

GLC

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Neck Injury Risk

17%

23%

Neck Compression

10 lbs.

87 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

363/349 lbs.

378/445 lbs.

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Chest Compression

.6 inches

.7 inches

Neck Compression

51 lbs.

115 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Chevrolet Equinox is safer than the Mercedes GLC:

Equinox

GLC

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Hip Force

357 lbs.

409 lbs.

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Hip Force

630 lbs.

784 lbs.

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Spine Acceleration

40 G’s

40 G’s

Hip Force

730 lbs.

787 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty

Chevrolet’s powertrain warranty covers the Equinox 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Mercedes covers the GLC. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the GLC ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

The Equinox’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the GLC’s (6 vs. 5 years).

There are almost 8 times as many Chevrolet dealers as there are Mercedes dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Equinox’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Equinox first among compact SUVs in their 2019 Initial Quality Study. The GLC was rated third in its category.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are better in initial quality than Mercedes vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet 6th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 9 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 12th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet fourth in reliability, above the industry average. With 19 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 13th.

Engine

The Equinox’s optional 2.0 turbo 4-cyl. produces 11 more horsepower (252 vs. 241) than the GLC 300’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

As tested in Motor Trend the Chevrolet Equinox 2.0 turbo 4-cyl. is faster than the GLC 300:

Equinox

GLC

Zero to 60 MPH

6.6 sec

6.9 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

92.1 MPH

89.6 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Equinox gets better fuel mileage than the GLC:

MPG

Equinox

FWD

1.5 turbo 4-cyl.

26 city/31 hwy

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

22 city/29 hwy

AWD

1.5 turbo 4-cyl.

25 city/30 hwy

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

22 city/28 hwy

GLC

RWD

300 2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

22 city/27 hwy

AWD

300 2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

22 city/27 hwy

AMG 43 3.0 turbo V6

19 city/25 hwy

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Chevrolet Equinox uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended with the 2.0 turbo 4-cyl. engine for maximum performance). The GLC requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Equinox 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 GLC doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping

The Equinox stops shorter than the GLC:

Equinox

GLC

60 to 0 MPH

119 feet

126 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

141 feet

143 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

The Equinox has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The GLC doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

The Equinox LS/LT/Premier has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the GLC; it requires you to depend on its run-flat tires, which limits mileage and speed before they are repaired. If a run-flat is damaged beyond repair by a road hazard your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling

The Equinox Premier handles at .83 G’s, while the GLC 300 4MATIC pulls only .80 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

For better maneuverability, the Equinox’s turning circle is 1.3 feet tighter than the GLC’s (37.4 feet vs. 38.7 feet).

For greater off-road capability the Equinox has a 2.9 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the GLC 300 (7.9 vs. 5 inches), allowing the Equinox to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged. The Equinox’s minimum ground clearance is 1.2 inches higher than on the AMG GLC 43 (7.9 vs. 6.7 inches).

Chassis

The Chevrolet Equinox may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 500 to 600 pounds less than the Mercedes GLC.

The Equinox uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The GLC doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The Equinox has 2.2 inches more front headroom, .1 inches more front legroom and 2.6 inches more rear legroom than the GLC.

The front step up height for the Equinox is 2.8 inches lower than the GLC (17.2” vs. 20”). The Equinox’s rear step up height is 5 inches lower than the GLC’s (17.5” vs. 22.5”).

Cargo Capacity

The Equinox has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the GLC with its rear seat up (29.9 vs. 19.4 cubic feet). The Equinox has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the GLC with its rear seat folded (63.9 vs. 56.5 cubic feet).

Ergonomics

The Equinox’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge - which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The GLC does not have an oil pressure gauge.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the Equinox LS/LT/Premier’s available exterior keypad. The GLC doesn’t offer an exterior keypad entry system, and its Mercedes-Benz Emergency Call can’t unlock the doors if the vehicle doesn’t have cell phone reception or the driver can’t contact the service.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Equinox has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the GLC only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the Equinox owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Equinox will cost $2035 to $6955 less than the GLC over a five-year period.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Equinox is less expensive to operate than the GLC because typical repairs cost much less on the Equinox than the GLC, including $381 less for a water pump, $28 less for front brake pads, $237 less for a starter, $86 less for fuel injection, $4323 less for front struts and $591 less for a power steering pump.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Chevrolet Equinox will be $16019 to $21886 less than for the Mercedes GLC.

Recommendations

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Equinox first among compact SUVs in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The GLC was rated third in its category.

The Chevrolet Equinox outsold the Mercedes GLC by almost five to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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