Crossovers & SUVs
The Groove is a small crossover for certain countries in the Americas, although not the US or Canada, as well as for some markets in the Middle East and elsewhere. It is manufactured in China by the SAIC GM Wuling joint venture and comes off the same production line as the very closely related and older Baojun 510.
GM’s first market in South America to announce the model was Chile (October 2020), followed soon after by the relevant importers in Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia and Uruguay. The Groove is not expected to be available in either Brazil or Argentina. In Mexico it will be new for the 2022 model year.
As the Baojun original was introduced dates to 2017, there should also be a facelift for the Groove in 2022, synchronised with one for the 510. A new generation is due to arrive in 2024.
A larger crossover will arrive in North America later this quarter, new for the region’s 2022 model year and then in the Middle East during Q4. Unlike the Groove, it’s electric.
The Bolt EUV (pictured) was revealed in February, at the same time as a facelift for the smaller Bolt. Although they share an architecture, no panels are in common. The EUV, positioned above the Bolt and six inches longer, is in the same segment as the VW ID.4.
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Unlike many other GM EVs, this one doesn’t have the company’s Ultium-branded batteries.
Expect a facelift for the 2025 model year and a new Bolt EUV in CY2027.
The Equinox is one of GM’s biggest selling vehicles. The current model was seen by the public for the first time at the LA auto show in November 2016, new for the 2018 model year.
This 4,652 mm long crossover also became a model for China in its latest generation. It has been manufactured by the SAIC GM joint venture at these firms’ Wuhan plant since March 2017.
GM Canada announced at the Toronto auto show in February 2015 that the Ingersoll plant in Ontario – officially known as CAMI – would again build the then next model. It is five inches (13cm) shorter so as to make room in the Chevrolet range for the Blazer, an additional SUV above it and below the Traverse.
Gone are the previous Equinox’s large capacity four- and six-cylinder engines, and in their place, originally, three turbocharged four-cylinder units. GM’s Hydra-Matic 9T50 nine-speed automatic transmission was also new for the 2.0-litre variants. This gearbox for front-wheel drive & AWD cars is built by GM at its San Luis Potosi transmission plant.
North America’s Equinox offered the choice of 1.5-litre petrol (GM code: LYX), 2.0-litre petrol (LTG) and 1.6-litre diesel but the last of the these three was dropped at the end of the 2019 model year and the 2.0-litre petrol at the end of MY2020.
GM began deliveries of the 2018 Chevrolet Equinox to North American dealerships in March 2017, with the turbocharged 2.0-litre gasoline and 1.6-litre diesel added three months later.
A strike at the CAMI plant entered its second month in October 2017 and this began to affect deliveries of the hot-selling SUV. GM responded with a threat to close the Ingersoll factory. Workers accepted a compromise deal with GM Canada and the production hiatus ended in mid-October.
A facelift premiered at the Chicago auto show in February 2020. Restyled for what was supposed to be the 2021 model year, an RS model grade was also new. This features a lot of blacked-out exterior detailing plus black upholstery with red stitching. US market deliveries had been due to commence in the fourth quarter 2020 but due to COVID-19, what has become the ’22 Equinox was delayed until this year. By contrast, China’s facelifted Equinox went on sale there in September 2020.
GM’s LSY 2.0-litre turbo engine is part of the 2022 model year changes. This is a newer unit, not the former 2.0-litre turbo, which had the GM code of LTG. Outputs for LSY are said to be 237 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque.
GM Canada and the union representing workers at the CAMI plant brought forward a new contract agreement, the existing one not being due to expire until this September. The reason was to allow GM to announce that it intended to manufacture electric delivery vans at the Ingersoll factory and wind down production of the Chevy crossover. According to the January 2021 statement, close to CA$1bn would be spent on retooling for the manufacture of GM’s EV600, a delivery van for its BrightDrop division.
On 30 April, GM Canada suddenly announced that CAMI would be idled for at least two months, the reason given being the supply of crucial chips having dried up. Two months later there was more news: the end of Equinox build in Ingersoll was brought forward. GM Canada gave this statement a few days ago:
“In April 2022, Chevrolet Equinox production will end at CAMI and the BrightDrop equipment will be moved to Ingersoll, reducing the time required for plant changeover. We expect to satisfy the strong customer demand for Equinox with other plants in our manufacturing footprint as CAMI retools for BrightDrop production.
EV600 production will shift to the CAMI Assembly plant in Ingersoll in November 2022 following a four-month plant retooling. CAMI-based BrightDrop production is anticipated to ramp up to two shifts in 2023 and, market permitting, three shifts of production as soon as 2024″.
The Equinox replacement is expected in 2024 for the 2025 model year. The platform will likely be VSS-S. GM is yet to name the lead plant. It will likely be in Mexico.
Only last month the main union representing workers at GM do Brasil’s São José dos Campos factory announced the news that a new Chevy S10 would be in production there during 2023. And this pick-up will be followed by a new TrailBlazer. As the pair will share a frame architecture, this SUV is different to the existing unibody Trailblazer available in China, North America and South Korea.
General Motors held a special event at its Warren Technical Center in early March 2020. The company showed the then-new BEV3 architecture and gave details of certain future models. Among the named vehicles was an electric crossover for Chevrolet. No launch date was given but 2022 is likely. Size should be around the 4.7-4.9 m mark.
The Traverse is a large crossover sold mainly in North America, although the model was added to GM Korea’s line-up in September 2019 (as an import). The current generation premiered at the 2017 Detroit auto show and was new for North America’s 2018 model year. Sales commenced in October 2017.
Seating is for up to eight occupants. The standard engine for all variants with the exception of the RS was originally a 3.6-litre normally aspirated V6 linked to a nine-speed automatic transmission. For the RS, there was a turbocharged 2.0-litre which had more torque than the V6. GM dropped the four-cylinder engine as part of changes for the 2020 model year.
Both front- and all-wheel drive Traverse variants are offered. The life cycle should be nine years with two facelifts: one announced in March 2020 for the 2021 model year and available from late 2020 and the second in 2023.
The facelifted Traverse has been delayed until later this quarter due to COVID-19: what was supposed to be the 2021 Traverse becomes a 2022 model. The next generation should debut for the 2027 model year.
No officially announced plans for a Corvette E-SUV exist yet Chevrolet division is said to have been considering such a model for years. Should such a project have gained approval, a production vehicle would arrive during 2023 at the earliet.
The architecture would likely be General Motors’ BEV3 which is for larger electric models. A Corvette E-SUV would likely be somewhere between 4.6 and 4.9 m long and use GM’s second generation Ultium batteries along with multiple Ultium Drive-branded motors.
The Audi e-tron S has been in the segment where a presumed electric Corvette SUV might be pitched since 2020. It hasn’t been a terribly strong seller in any market but that doesn’t mean that such vehicles won’t become more popular later in the 2020s.
This month marks one year since production of the T1YC Suburban commenced. The new-for-MY21 model and its GMC Yukon XL twin were announced to the media in December 2019. Both use VSS-T (formerly T1xx) as their basis and are four inches longer than the previous generation models.
Buyers have the choice of three engines:
- 207 kW (277 horsepower) and 623 Nm (460 lb-ft) LM2 3.0-litre Duramax-branded diesel V6
- 265 kW (355 horsepower) L84 5.3-litre gasoline V8 (383 lb ft)
- 313 kW (420 horsepower) L87 6.2-litre gasoline V8 (460 lb ft)
Each of the three engines is linked to the 10L80 ten-speed automatic gearbox.
Among key engineering changes are independent rear suspension instead of the live axle which had been part of every previous generation. Body panels, meanwhile, are aluminium. Pneumatic suspension – GM calls it ‘Air Ride Adaptive Suspension’ – is optional for High Country and Z71 model grades.
Just like its predecessor, the latest model is optionally available in nine-seat layout: the front seats are replaced by what is effectively a bench layout.
The Suburban is more or less an extended wheelbase version of the Tahoe (see link to PLDB below for that model). It should be facelifted in early 2024 and replaced in 2027. That vehicle will almost certainly be electric.
Reports for many other manufacturers’ future models are grouped in the OEM product strategy summaries section of Just Auto.
Future platform intelligence
More detail on past, current and forthcoming models can be found in PLDB, the future vehicles database which is part of GlobalData’s Automotive Intelligence Center. That includes Chevrolet models not mentioned in this report and the previous one for reasons of space.
This is the fourth feature in a series which looks at GM’s brands’ current and future models. Baojun was the first and Wuling the second, followed by Chevrolet cars and pick-ups. Next comes GMC & Hummer, then Buick and Cadillac.