General Motors’ upcoming global minicar will be known as the Chevrolet Spark when it hits European showrooms in 2010. What’s more, the Detroit automaker reverses its original position for the vehicle’s rollout which it said would happen in nearly every market except the U.S. by confirming it will land in American Chevrolet dealerships in 2011.
Presented in Beat concept guise at the 2009 North American International Auto Show, GM says the sharp-edged, three-door competitor to the Smart Fortwo and Toyota iQ will formally debut as the Spark at the Geneva auto show in March. Designed in Korea by GM’s Daewoo unit, which also will build the compact hatchback, the Spark will slot in below the current Chevy Aveo in the U.S. both in terms of size and price. GM is holding off until the official unveiling to release any detailed information on the Spark, saying only it will easily manage 40 mpg on the highway and play a key role in reinforcing the company’s self-held position as a maker of fuel-efficient, award-winning products.
The five-door Chevrolet Spark, the smallest member of Chevrolet’s family of cars, brings style, roominess and versatility to a segment of extremely fuel-efficient small cars. Spark will provide great fuel economy, and its trim size makes it very agile in all kinds of driving conditions while still feeling substantial on the open road. The U.S. production version of the Spark will go on sale in early 2012. The Spark will complete GM’s small car trifecta, placing it in a strong position to go up against the likes of Honda, Toyota and now Ford.
“This small vehicle makes a big statement,” said Margaret Brooks, Chevrolet marketing director for small cars. “With its fresh, youthful approach, we believe Spark will appeal to customers who want excellent fuel economy, functionality and style at an affordable price.” Chevy recently launched the Spark in India under the Beat name.