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Old 05-26-2021, 05:03 AM   #1
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2021 Equinox flat tow

We have been full time for 5 years now, dragging our 2013 Equinox AWD around the country behind our coach. However, she is getting tired and we are looking to replace it. When we went on the road 5 years ago, we were told that only the AWD could be flat towed. Today the dinghy guide seems to say that any Equinox can be towed 4 down.
Does anyone out there tow a 2020 or 2021 FWD Equinox 4 down? Thank You.
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Old 05-26-2021, 06:48 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by partskenn View Post
We have been full time for 5 years now, dragging our 2013 Equinox AWD around the country behind our coach. However, she is getting tired and we are looking to replace it. When we went on the road 5 years ago, we were told that only the AWD could be flat towed. Today the dinghy guide seems to say that any Equinox can be towed 4 down.
Does anyone out there tow a 2020 or 2021 FWD Equinox 4 down? Thank You.
I don't have an Equinox, but a Jeep patriot 4WD with a "CVT" transmission.
The manual states that I should put the transfer case in neutral and NOT tow flat because the CVT will constantly pump, So I need to have a tow dolly... If I had known that, I would have stayed away from any vehicle (2 or 4 WD) with a CVT transmission...

That said, however, this list puts your Equinox right in the middle of the first column for vehicles that can be towed flat... (The list makes to a nice buyer's guide too...)
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Old 05-26-2021, 08:41 AM   #3
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I just bought a 2021 Equinox FWD to tow 4-down. I'm waiting on getting it setup. FWD and AWD are both 4-down towable. From page 312 of the owners manual:

"All vehicles may be dinghy towed from the front. These vehicles can also be towed by placing them on a platform trailer with all four wheels off of the ground. All other engine/transmission combinations must towed by platform trailer. Also see the information on dolly towing later in this be section."

The manual goes on to explain what you need to do:

1. Position the vehicle to be towed and secure it to the towing vehicle.
2. Start the vehicle.
3. If equipped with AWD, engage the AWD system and confirm that it is on. See All-Wheel Drive 0 209.
4. Shift the transmission to N (Neutral).
5. Then, put the vehicle into ACC/ ACCESSORY by pressing ENGINE START/ STOP one time without the brake pedal applied. An amber light will appear in the button when in ACC/ACCESSORY.
The chime will ring continuously for 30 minutes. Leave the transmission in N (Neutral).
6. Turn off all accessories that are not needed

It is required to charge the battery of the towed vehicle during recreational vehicle towing.



Quote:
Originally Posted by partskenn View Post
We have been full time for 5 years now, dragging our 2013 Equinox AWD around the country behind our coach. However, she is getting tired and we are looking to replace it. When we went on the road 5 years ago, we were told that only the AWD could be flat towed. Today the dinghy guide seems to say that any Equinox can be towed 4 down.
Does anyone out there tow a 2020 or 2021 FWD Equinox 4 down? Thank You.
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Old 05-26-2021, 02:57 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wayfarer2021 View Post
I just bought a 2021 Equinox FWD to tow 4-down. I'm waiting on getting it setup. FWD and AWD are both 4-down towable. From page 312 of the owners manual:

"All vehicles may be dinghy towed from the front.

...

All other engine/transmission combinations must towed by platform trailer.
Nice. Someone didn't do their proofreading.

The 2021 isn't much different from the 2020 or 2019 and "all" really means "all." The first one, not the second one. The 2018 Equinox did have some engine/transmission combinations that could not be flat towed.

A friend flat tows a 2019 FWD Equinox, if that helps.

The battery charge line is critical. This car pulls almost 8 amps out of the battery when configured for towing. That means your battery charge line and the ground line must be 12 AWG wire or maybe 14 AWG at the smallest.

The FWD is more forgiving if you get a flat. Both front tires must be the correct size but the donut spare can be on the rear. If a FWD front tire goes flat, put the donut spare on the rear and move that rear tire to the front.

For an AWD like I have, 2020, all four tires must be the correct size. Installing the donut spare automatically disables AWD and the car cannot be flat towed with AWD turned off.

You'll like the car a lot. I suggest watching the install videos from ETrailer for Demco, Roadmaster, and Blue Ox baseplates before selecting the baseplate.

There was a weight reduction program that knocked like 400 pounds off the 2018 and later Equinox models. One place that occurred was in the attach points for the baseplates. They used to be big metal plates and now there is just a small horizontal and vertical flange on each side, barely 1" in width. That's what made me disregard the Blue Ox; it only bolted to those small flanges. Demco and Roadmaster each pick up additional frame attach points for more baseplate strength.

FWIW,

Ray
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Old 05-26-2021, 03:36 PM   #5
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I noticed that. I almost commented that there is only one engine and transmission choice in 2021 so the statement made no sense. I took all to mean AWD and FWD.

What I did find interesting is the GMC Traverse, which is the GMC equivalent of the Equinox, is not flat towable. It has the 9-speed transmission vs the 6 speed in the Equinox. I found this surprising since I thought they both used the same chassis, engine, and drive train. I wonder if the 2022 Equinox is going to have a 9-speed transmission. If so it may not be towable. I have read it will have the same 1.5L engine and the 2.0 is no more.

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Old 05-26-2021, 04:19 PM   #6
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What I did find interesting is the GMC Traverse, which is the GMC equivalent of the Equinox, is not flat towable. It has the 9-speed transmission vs the 6 speed in the Equinox. I found this surprising since I thought they both used the same chassis, engine, and drive train. I wonder if the 2022 Equinox is going to have a 9-speed transmission. If so it may not be towable. I have read it will have the same 1.5L engine and the 2.0 is no more.
I think you mean "Terrain" instead of "Traverse".

While the Terrain essentially was identical to the Equinox prior to 2018, that changed in 2018. The Terrain was given an electronic shifting control that is not compatible with flat towing. For one thing, it seems to automatically engage the parking brake in neutral with the engine off or something like that.

The 2.0L, which I have in my 2020 is gone for 2021 but was supposed to come back for 2022 as a redesign. Then apparently that got canceled per https://gmauthority.com/blog/2021/03...uinox-refresh/

My 2020 2.0L has the 9-speed transmission.

Ray
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Old 05-26-2021, 04:35 PM   #7
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Yea Terrain. I have not been following the Equinox history and just bought one because it seemed like a good relatively lightweight toad. I have been impressed with my 2021. It has all the safety features like adaptive cruise control, lane departure assist, multiple cameras, iPhone carplay, etc. It drives extremely well. I am more than happy with mine especially when you consider the cost. Our other car is a Toyota Highlander but I would consider a Chevy the next time we change the Toyota. Chevy has come a long way in my opinion.
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Old 05-26-2021, 07:25 PM   #8
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Yup, I like my 2020 Premier AWD. I bought it used otherwise I would have gotten FWD to avoid the donut spare issue but whatever. I got the same package as you and yes, that Surround Vision front camera makes lining up to the tow bar very easy.

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Old 05-26-2021, 11:11 PM   #9
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I have a 19 that I flat tow. I do not know about the newer ones but in 19 the only ones that could be flat towed were the 2.0L turbo with the 9 speed trans the the diesel version.
One thing, I'm still fighting a dead battery after 3 to 4 hour runs. I do have the charge wire installed also. I'm thinking about installing a battery shut off switch but will hold off on that until after the warranty is up.
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Old 05-26-2021, 11:29 PM   #10
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2021 Equinox flat tow

Quote:
I have a 19 that I flat tow. I do not know about the newer ones but in 19 the only ones that could be flat towed were the 2.0L turbo with the 9 speed trans the the diesel version.
Not accurate. My buddy tows a 2019 FWD 1.5L Equinox with the 6 speed. The 2018 had some restrictions but I think it was only for the 9-speed. The 6-speed could be safely towed.

Quote:
One thing, I'm still fighting a dead battery after 3 to 4 hour runs. I do have the charge wire installed also. I'm thinking about installing a battery shut off switch but will hold off on that until after the warranty is up.

Your charge line is inadequate, probably due to too small a wire gauge for the charging line and/or the ground wire. If it was safe to tow the Equinox with the battery disconnected then the towing procedure would not specify to put the car into the ACC mode a specific way.

Your money, though.

Ray
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Old 05-26-2021, 11:52 PM   #11
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We tow a 2020 Equinox FWD 2.0 turbo 9 speed transmission. Almost too easy to hook up. Hook up. Put in neutral. Hit start once to put in accessory mode. Turn off all accessories. Turn on Duo Pro braking system.

Don't forget to run 5 min before and after towing and at stops like gas stations.

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Old 05-27-2021, 04:43 AM   #12
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I have the 2020 2.0T AWD and it tows great. I do have a charge line. The only thing I have to do is make sure the AWD button is engaged per the owners manual.
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Old 05-27-2021, 01:11 PM   #13
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Thank you for all the answers. We are off tomorrow to see what we can find at the local dealers. Since we no longer do winter snow, it's nice to know that FWD is a possibility.
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Old 05-27-2021, 01:37 PM   #14
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I think you will really like the new Equinox. I have the Premier trim level like NXR. It is really nice small SUV with lots of bells and whistles. I preferred FWD as it weighs less than the AWD and less to go mechanically wrong. Chevy is advertising almost $5K off on the Equinox now.
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