While not an enthusiast's platform by any means, it is finally time to say goodbye to GM’s crossovers built on the Theta platform. And what better, trendy way to kiss them goodbye then to offer murdered out editions? Yeah, all black everything, like it’s 2013! Early this year, the GMC Terrain got the “Nightfall” treatment, and now it is the Chevy Equinox’s turn with the “Midnight” edition, before the current platform bows out in 2017.
Now say what you will about the blackout editions, the Theta platform is one of GM’s recent big successes, outside of truck sales. The Equinox, Terrain, and former, Mexican-made Saturn Ion/Chevy Captiva have been very reliable, quiet, and easy to drive family crossovers. Sometimes boring is good when it comes to a family vehicle. The Theta has been pretty solid and without drama.
Enthusiasts lament the loss of the North American Chevy Trailblazer, while Chevy sells a decent international version in the southern hemisphere. But a few have respected the Theta platform for its balance and the venerable 2.4L EcoTec motor, which remains a popular choice for Baja Bugs and Sandrails. In fact, I saw the American Captiva as a forbidden fruit, as it was sold only to GM fleet customers. I liked the Captiva so much I insisted on it at car rental counters for years. It was quieter and more efficient that any RAV4 or Edge at the time. And I think GM customers would agree, as the Equinox has solid sales numbers even as it enters the final months of production.
In keeping with the tradition of GM dealer order codes, if you want a Midnight Edition Equinox, you have to combine the LT trim with the Convenience Package. That is, if you really want one.
It seems even the GM faithful are weary of these blacked out cars. But doesn’t The General do it well with the Cadillac ATS Midnight Edition?
And how about Jeep’s Altitude edition of the Grand Cherokee? Is this trend dying a few years after it caught on? Do any of you still want a black grille and wheel set from the factory?