2020 Chevrolet Equinox vs. 2020 MINI Countryman

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/12/14

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 MINI Countryman doesn’t offer height adjustable 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 Countryman doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tests front crash prevention systems. With a score of 6 points, IIHS rates the Automatic Emergency Braking optional in the Equinox as “Superior.” The Countryman scores only 3 points and is rated only “Advanced.”

The Equinox’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The Countryman doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

The Equinox Premier offers an optional Surround Vision to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Countryman only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

The Equinox (except L/LS)’s optional blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them. The Countryman doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.

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 Countryman doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Both the Equinox and the Countryman 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, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras and available all wheel drive.

Warranty

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

There are almost 24 times as many Chevrolet dealers as there are MINI dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Equinox’s warranty.

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates rated the Equinox first among compact suvs in their 2019 Initial Quality Study. The Countryman isn’t in the top three 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 MINI vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet 6th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 22 more problems per 100 vehicles, MINI is ranked 23rd, 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 MINI vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet fourth in reliability, above the industry average. With 4 more problems per 100 vehicles, MINI is ranked 6th.

Engine

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The Equinox has more powerful engines than the Countryman:

Horsepower

Torque

Equinox 1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

170 HP

203 lbs.-ft.

Equinox 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

252 HP

260 lbs.-ft.

Countryman 1.5 turbo 3 cyl.

134 HP

162 lbs.-ft.

Countryman S 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

189 HP

206 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Motor Trend the Chevrolet Equinox 1.5 turbo 4 cyl. is faster than the MINI Countryman turbo 3 cyl.:

Equinox

Countryman

Zero to 60 MPH

8.7 sec

9.3 sec

Quarter Mile

16.7 sec

17 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

83.1 MPH

79.6 MPH

As tested in Motor Trend the Chevrolet Equinox 2.0 is faster than the Countryman S 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.:

Equinox

Countryman

Zero to 60 MPH

6.6 sec

7.4 sec

Quarter Mile

15.2 sec

15.7 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

92.1 MPH

86.7 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the Equinox AWD with its standard turbo 4 cyl. gets better fuel mileage than the Countryman S ALL4 8-speed Auto 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. (189 HP) (25 city/30 hwy vs. 23 city/31 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 Countryman 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 Countryman doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

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A nine-speed automatic is standard on the Chevrolet Equinox 2.0 turbo 4 cyl., for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the Countryman.

Brakes and Stopping

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The Equinox stops much shorter than the Countryman:

Equinox

Countryman

60 to 0 MPH

119 feet

138 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the Equinox Premier’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Countryman (235/50R19 vs. 225/55R17).

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 Countryman doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

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For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Equinox’s wheelbase is 2.2 inches longer than on the Countryman (107.3 inches vs. 105.1 inches).

The Equinox Premier handles at .83 G’s, while the Countryman ALL4 pulls only .79 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Equinox Premier executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Countryman ALL4 (27.7 seconds @ .61 average G’s vs. 28.3 seconds @ .58 average G’s).

For greater off-road capability the Equinox has a 1.4 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the Countryman (7.9 vs. 6.5 inches), allowing the Equinox to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis

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The front grille of the Equinox uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Countryman doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

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

Passenger Space

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The Equinox has 6.3 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Countryman (103.2 vs. 96.9).

The Equinox has .5 inches more front legroom, 2.4 inches more front shoulder room, .2 inches more rear headroom, 2.3 inches more rear legroom and 1.5 inches more rear shoulder room than the Countryman.

Cargo Capacity

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The Equinox has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Countryman with its rear seat up (29.9 vs. 17.6 cubic feet). The Equinox has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Countryman with its rear seat folded (63.9 vs. 47.6 cubic feet).

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the Equinox LT/Premier’s rear seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Countryman doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

Towing

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The Equinox has a 1500 lbs. towing capacity. The Countryman has no towing capacity.

Ergonomics

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The Equinox offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Countryman doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

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 PIN entry system. The Countryman doesn’t offer an exterior PIN entry system.

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 PIN entry system. The Countryman doesn’t offer an exterior PIN entry system.

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 Countryman only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Equinox has standard extendable sun visors. The Countryman doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Both the Equinox and the Countryman offer available heated front seats. The Equinox Premier also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Countryman.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the Equinox Premier keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Countryman doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the Equinox Premier’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The Countryman doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

The Equinox (except L/LS) offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The Countryman doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the Equinox owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Equinox will cost $25 to $2755 less than the Countryman over a five-year period.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Equinox is less expensive to operate than the Countryman because typical repairs cost much less on the Equinox than the Countryman, including $35 less for a starter, $201 less for front struts and $49 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 $2687 to $2791 less than for the MINI Countryman.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/12/14

The Chevrolet Equinox outsold the MINI Countryman by almost 25 to one during the 2019 model year.

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

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