Much better looking than the hedgehog
Another small car has hit the market. Before you all heave a collective sigh of annoyance and turn away, I want you to take a moment and get a closer look at this one. This one’s here to play the game (unlike some I could mention, but won’t) even though it has some seriously worthy opponents.
What new small car am I going on about? Why, it’s the new Chevrolet Sonic, and I’ve got to admit; I was pretty impressed after my time behind the wheel.
Admittedly, the subcompact (or small car) market is not one that’s loaded with vehicles featuring endless option lists. Well, Chevy has come into a competitive market with a car that offers a good list of standard items (including aluminum wheels and Bluetooth connectivity) for an equally good price ($14,495 for the base LS). With the likes of the Honda Fit, Ford Fiesta and brand-new Hyundai Accent already heading up the market, it’s no wonder Chevy felt the need to beef up their once bottom-of-the-barrel and outgoing Aveo.
So, what’s the Sonic really like?
The drive event I was invited on to discover the Sonic took me from downtown Montreal to downtown Quebec City, from one uber-modern boutique hotel to another with winding, rural, small-town country roads in between. The mix of cold, hard and sophisticated modern with historic, rustic and rural was a bit of a juxtaposition that I struggled with at first. Drive events are often created with a message in mind – there’s usually a reason we drive the cars where we do. So what was Chevrolet’s message here?
Well, let’s start with the car itself. The Chevy Sonic has been redesigned from nose to tail. While it holds that ever-familiar shape (despite being designed by an entirely new team, not the same one responsible for the Aveo), the exposed headlights and taillights add a new, funky touch to the exterior that caught everyone’s eye on the road.
While the 5-door hatch version is decidedly more attractive, there is a sedan version as well for those who like the look. The sportier, truncated hatch version was my favourite thanks to the hidden rear passenger door handles and the roof-mounted rear spoiler (which will also be seen on the smaller Spark when it arrives early next year).
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