Chevy's new city car doesn't even match the larger Sonic/Cruze in fuel economy.
July 18, 2012
By: Nick Saporito
This week the EPA let the cat out of the bag with regards to the fuel economy figures for Chevrolet's upcoming city car. The A-segment Spark will be the smallest Chevy ever sold in North America, meaning many were speculating that the new mini-car would achieve impressive fuel economy figures to justify it's existence in the U.S. market. Unfortunately, the EPA has confirmed that few will be igniting any major amount of love over Spark's fuel economy. In fact, Spark's larger siblings do better on the highway.
According to the EPA's website, they have rated the Spark with manual transmission is rated at 32 mpg city and 38 mpg highway, while the four-speed automatic will wear ratings of 28 mpg city and 37 mpg highway. The new Spark is powered by an Ecotec 1.2-liter four-cylinder that makes 83 horsepower and 83 foot-pounds of torque, an acceptable amount of power for a car that weighs in at only 2,200-pounds.
Spark's main competition, the Smart ForTwo, wears similar ratings with its 1.0-liter three-cylinder. Typically the size of a vehicle ultimately has diminishing returns with fuel economy. The smaller the vehicle, the less aerodynamic; meaning the Spark is immediately disadvantaged because of the very thing most of the public associates with good fuel economy.
Since announcing the Spark for the North American market Chevrolet has been coy about the car's fuel economy. The lack of comment from Chevrolet ultimately led to some speculation as to the range in which the final fuel economy numbers would fall into - most assuming the car would at least achieve about 40 mpg highway.
While the Spark's EPA figures are good for this new, growing segment of cars in North America, it remains to be seen if 32/38 mpg will be enough to convince American car buyers to pick the new Spark over it's larger Sonic and Cruze siblings.
Spark launches later this summer as a 2013 model.