DETROIT – Mini cars have been populating international streets for decades, and are now building a solid presence in the United States. The segment is characterized by some misconceptions that the newest entries, like Chevrolet’s all-new Spark, can confidently refute.
The 2013 Chevrolet Spark, a four-passenger, five-door hatchback, was designed to challenge what’s possible in the mini-car segment. Here’s a look at how Chevy’s newest addition to its small car line-up is tackling some of the common misconceptions surrounding today’s mini-cars.
Myth: Mini cars aren’t Safe
Reality: Spark features the same advanced safety technologies available on the rest of the Chevrolet passenger car lineup
The Spark protects both driver and passengers with 10 standard air bags, including dual-stage frontal air bags, seat-mounted side air bags and side curtain air bags that extend over the front and rear seating rows. A strong body frame made of high strength steel makes up more than 62 percent of the Spark’s underbody and 42 percent of its upper body.
Myth: Mini cars are cramped and uncomfortable
Reality: Spark’s interior is spacious with room to fit four adults comfortably
The Spark offers more space for people and stuff than its competitors in the mini car segment. Its cargo area of 11.4 cubic feet behind the rear seat is 20 percent more spacious than the Fiat 500 and 225 percent more than the Scion IQ. With the rear seats folded down, drivers have 31.2 cubic feet of space. That is enough space to hold a Samsonite laptop backpack, DKX 25” rolling luggage bag, 30” Hardside Upright suitcase and Calloway golf bag.
Myth: The smaller the vehicle the better the aerodynamics
Reality: Mini-cars are not as aerodynamic as they appear
You can change a lot, but you can’t change physics and despite popular belief, mini cars aren’t as aerodynamic as you may think. Mini cars short and tall design creates higher aerodynamic drag. However, engineers designed the Spark to maximize a driver’s urban lifestyle, making it maneuverable, easy to park and achieving the lowest estimated fuel cost of any Chevy small car, except for the Volt electric car with extended range capability.
Myth: Mini cars handling and vehicle performance leaves something to be desired
Reality: Spark doesn’t just look fun to drive, it actually is
Electric power steering and MacPherson strut front suspension are designed to deliver taut, tight handling characteristics that better connect the driver with the road and provide outstanding overall stability. Spark also has a tight turning circle of only 32.5 feet (9.9 meters), which enhances its maneuverability in urban areas.
The Spark is the only mini car covered by a five-year/100,000-mile Powertrain Limited Warranty, which includes roadside assistance and courtesy transportation. In addition to powertrain coverage, Spark is backed by a three-year/36,000-mile comprehensive warranty and a six-year/100,000-mile rust-through warranty.
Myth: The design and features of mini cars are boring
Reality: Spark dares to stand out in a crowd with the newest color trends and latest technology
With a color pallet that includes Salsa Red, Jalapeno, Denim, Lemonade and Techno Pink, the Spark seeks to attract attention.
The Spark is the first Chevy without a factory-installed CD player, which was ditched in favor of the Chevrolet MyLink system – standard on 1LT and 2LT models. The MyLink system is designed to integrate with the driver’s Smartphone via Bluetooth or USB. Once connected, the system becomes an extension of the user’s device, giving them access to stored music and applications such as Pandora internet radio, Tune-In and Stitcher. MyLink also includes the recently introduced BringGo application – an embedded smartphone app that delivers full-function navigation.
Launched in Korea in 2009 and now available in almost every country in the world, the Spark’s journey to the U.S. market is in response to the recent popularity of mini cars among U.S. consumers. The Spark has sold more than 600,000 vehicles globally, and is gaining momentum with American drivers. It was the fastest-selling vehicle in July 2012 with an average four days-to-turn – the time from its arrival on a dealer lot to sale to a customer.
For more information on the 2013 Chevy Spark, please visit www.chevrolet.com/Spark
Founded in 1911 in Detroit, Chevrolet is now one of the world’s largest car brands, doing business in more than 140 countries and selling more than 4 million cars and trucks a year. Chevrolet provides customers with fuel-efficient vehicles that feature spirited performance, expressive design, and high quality. More information on Chevrolet models can be found at www.chevrolet.com.