All-Terrain
"After driving the Terrain," says contributor Mike Connor, "I really wish we'd gotten the Equinox. I like the way the GMC drives, but I don't care for how it looks; it just appears so long and boxy, whereas the Chevy looks lean and sporty." Assistant Web producer Scott Evans notes, "I like the interior styling, but it feels cramped inside. With the sunroof pocket in the ceiling, the small windows, the big pillars all the way around, and the wide center console, it feels almost claustrophobic." Truck Trend editor Allyson Harwood adds, "Decent six-speed, but I'd prefer to shift manually with paddles rather than that silly plus/minus button on the side of the shifter." Catch our drift? There's a lot we like about the Terrain, but ...

First and foremost, the price. With such niceties as nav, backup camera, leather, 18-inch wheels, Bluetooth, sunroof, and power liftgate, the Terrain is more than just well equipped. But at $29,945, it carries the highest base price, and at $34,170, it carries the highest as-tested price. But the real kicker: The Tucson includes all those items, sans the dispensable power liftgate, for a whopping $4680 less.

Then there are the Terrain's lackluster test numbers. Despite having the most horsepower and best highway mpg number, it puts up neither the quickest acceleration nor the top observed fuel economy. The culprit? Make that culprits, as in 4035 of them: The Terrain is 724 pounds portlier than the Forester. The styling too is a bit heavy--on the eyes, that is. "Exterior design is a real puzzler," says St. Antoine. "Square wheel arches? Makes the body-to-tire gaps look huge along the top."

Gripes aside, we did find the Terrain an impressive rig when on the move. St. Antoine remarks, "Supple chassis, with good control and solid steering feel." Evans adds, "I'd call it the sports car of the group, as it handles the best on pavement." If it weren't for the hefty price, disappointing performance stats, and elephantine curb weight, the Terrain would have scored higher. But those are big ifs.