Forget the six-figure Silverado EV: the most exciting upcoming electric Chevrolet could be a far more attainable pair of SUVs. The automaker accompanied its electric pickup news at CES 2022 today with the confirmation that an Chevrolet Equinox EV SUV is coming, along with a larger Chevrolet Blazer EV SUV.
Full details of both EVs will follow in due course, Chevrolet says, though it has dropped some of the key details about the new models. Both the Equinox EV SUV and the Blazer EV SUV will be arriving in the US in 2024, the former in the fall and the latter in the spring.
The Equinox EV SUV will be priced from around $30,000, Chevrolet says, plus destination and other fees, and before incentives. It’ll be offered in both fleet and retail versions, too, including in LT and RS trims as Chevy showed off in its images today. As with the Silverado EV, Cadillac Lyriq, and GMC HUMMER EV, the Equinox EV will be based on GM’s Ultium platform dedicated to electric vehicles.
That sets it apart from what has been Chevrolet’s affordable EV options so far, the Bolt EV and Bolt EUV. Priced from $31,000 and $33,000 respectively, they’re among the cheapest new electric models in the US at the moment, but they’re based on GM’s older platform for EVs, BEV II. Designed for front-wheel drive models, it proved cost-prohibitive to adapt for all-wheel drive: though the Bolt EUV may look like a crossover, it lacks that AWD option many crossover buyers go looking for.
While exact drivetrain details haven’t been shared yet, it’s a problem that the Equinox EV shouldn’t face. Ultium has been designed for front, rear, and all-wheel drive models, with up to four electric motors. While the latter is unlikely to feature on this affordable Chevy, the ability to offer FWD and AWD configurations seems more certain. Also to be confirmed is range: Ultium is potentially capable of 400+ miles on a charge as a platform, though GM has already said it plans to offer lower-range vehicles that are more affordable.
What makes the news so important is just how strong a seller the existing Equinox is in Chevrolet’s line-up, and among compact SUVs in general. It’s the automaker’s “second-highest selling brand nameplate” according to Steve Hill, Vice President at Chevrolet.
It’ll take GM’s electric portfolio – most of which is actually yet to launch – to nine models, before you consider outliers like the BrightDrop electric delivery vans and the Cruise Origin autonomous pod. While the automaker still has to actually put all this into production it’s a shift in the right direction at least.