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'08 Equinox Sport w/3.6L engine

'08 Equinox Sport w/3.6L engine


Anybody own one of these? Got anything good or bad to say about it? Some questions:

1.) The 3.6L is a new engine. What kind of track record does it have?

2.) With 250HP, how’s the gas mileage? Much different than the 3.4L base engine (17/24)?

3.) The cargo area with the back seats UP is listed as 35 cu. ft. Isn’t that smoke and mirrors because half of that space is above the tops of the rear seats (space you really can’t use). Is there any way to “cage in” that rear area so that you can safely stack stuff back there?

4.) Aren’t these things overpriced? I’m seeing sticker prices for these “SPORT” models around $30k! I know there’s a $4250 rebate on right now (plus a $1000 loyalty rebate) for a total rebate of $5250, but isn’t something like a Dodge Magnum (wagon) really a better value?

  1. The 3.6L “High Feature” engine has been around for a few years. With direct injection it’s output rivals that of some V8s. It’s a reliable engine.

  2. Because the 3.6L comes with a 6 speed automatic only. It’s fuel mileage is about the same as the base engine with the standard 5 speed auto. The difference is 1 MPG in the city and 0 on the highway

  3. Maybe. You’ll have to look to the aftermarket for that

  4. Domestic automakers always have higher sticker prices than what you actually end up paying. $30k is about the going rate for a decent mid-sized SUV these days. You may be able to work a better deal though. The Magnum is no doubt cooler, but unless you get one with the Hemi they aren’t that impressive.

No sale. The vehicle uses an extended version of the previous Saturn Vue platform. I owned that previous “platform” and the handling was terrible. GM electronic engine controls are iffy. Owner satisfaction is miserable. Reliability is below average. I would not recommend that fake SUV. It is a disguised minivan in my opinion. The annual auto issue from CR comes out in early March. The subscription will pay for itself forever if it saves you from just one mistake or Equinox. My Saturn Vue brakes could be adequate for the average golf cart.


It sounds like you’re talking about the old platform with the old base engine (3.4l). The “SPORT” version comes with the newer 3.6 engine and the better transmission (as FoDaddy mentioned). The suspension is also different (or “tuned” differently). It’s almost a completely different animal.


From what I can tell, this 3.6 is the pretty much the same engine they’ve been putting in the Acadia, Enclave, and Outlook. The Traverse, I think, has an upgraded version of this engine. The Equinox is at least 500lbs lighter than any of those SUVs, so I tend to believe the writeups I’ve read saying they’re fun to drive (and move very well).

I’m going to send out some offers. With $4250 off a $30k sticker, I’ll probably start around $21,500 with a final number around $20,500 (after the loyalty rebate). These are, after all, old leftovers built last summer (maybe even earlier).

I would not waste a single dime on a brand new Chevy Suv but outdated. Look at for resale of a used 2007 or prior and getting one at 50% of your “low ball” price is attainable.

Seriously consider buying one used. The 2008 and 2009 for that matter are little different than the original 2004 design except powertrain and other minor updates.

In the case of the Equinox. The 3.6L engine w/6 speed auto brings alot to the table. Unfortunately it’s only on the 08-up models.

4-Dodge Magnum’s out of production.

Can’t say nobody warned you, and I am saying old platform, which was info that was lifted from CR. It might be good to see the new issue before finalizing anything. Your offer for the vehicle seems about right to me.

My motto with cars is to buy new and hold. It’s 10 years or 200k (whichever comes LAST). I won’t buy used because I just don’t trust where the car’s been and what’s been done (or not done) to it.

I offered $21,700 and they came back at ~$23,700 (including their silly “fees”). The car was built in Feb '08, so it’s been sitting a while. It’s also got 80 miles on it, so someone’s been test driving it. I think I’m going to take a look at it. Still not sure if an Equinox has the space inside that I want. There’s also the cargo capacity issue for trips. Maybe one of those trailer hitch boxes would solve that problem.

Still say these things are overpriced. To me, an Equinox is just an Impala squeezed into a shorter wheelbase with a roofrack. To pay $3k+ more for that is ridiculous.

If spending an extra $10k(100% more) makes you feel better go for it. You realize the financial implications.

The only worry I would have is if this gets totaled (off chance) in the next few years you will only get paid the current market value.

Yeah, I guess that’s always something of a risk, but based on my driving record (knock on wood), the risk is very small I think.

Took a look at a (new) '09 today just to get a feel for the space inside. Two things:

1.) This one had the 3.4L engine in it, but it looked very different than the 3.4L engine in my '02 Impala. Specifically, on the side of the block I couldn’t see the familiar “V” seal intake gasket that so famously leaks on these engines. Is this a different 3.4L engine? Did GM redesign it?

2.) Looks like the cargo space can hold about 4-5 large suitcases standing on edge - even with the back seat pushed all the way back. However, there IS some wasted cargo area above the rear seatbacks (although not as much as I thought as the seatbacks stand pretty tall against the cargo area floor). If GM had only designed in some ceiling and floor hooks, a heavy-duty cargo net could’ve been installed vertically to allow cargo to be stacked all the way to the ceiling. I think I’ll need this space, so maybe a plexiglass panel will do the trick (installed temporarily on trips only).

Yeah, I know - but you can still buy an '08 leftover. I was thinking the STX (or whatever they call the better V6 version). Couldn’t justify the cost of either of the V8 versions, although I hear they’re a blast to drive…