From £10,570
The Chevrolet Aveo marks a big step forward for the brand, although this petrol version isn't as appealing as the diesel equivalent

Our Verdict

Chevrolet Aveo
A five-year warranty, good equipment levels and handsome looks compensate for a lack of driver involvement

The Chevrolet Aveo is a well-executed, competitively priced supermini which majors on refinement rather than driver involvement

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    Chevrolet Aveo 1.2 LT

    The Chevrolet Aveo marks a big step forward for the brand, although this petrol version isn't as appealing as the diesel equivalent
8 February 2012

What is it?

As the brand’s biggest-seller the Chevrolet Aveo is a major reason for Chevrolet’s global growth, which saw it scoring a record 4.76m sales in 2011.

Some of that is down to keen pricing, but the entry model’s £9995 price tag propels this all-new Aveo into a straight fight with lower-end Fiestas and Polos. And that’s stiff competition.

In this form the new Chevrolet comes with an 85bhp 1.2-litre petrol engine, a five-year warranty and an impressive standard kit tally that includes air conditioning, cruise control, electric mirrors and remote locking.

Another £1000 buys the LT tested here, which gains a four-way adjustable wheel, 15in alloys, Bluetooth and steering wheel-mounted controls. You also get a contemporary-looking hatchback of somewhat conservative style, a commodious cabin by class standards and five NCAP stars.

What you don’t get, however, is the material quality of mainstream superminis. The Aveo’s dashboard has some sculptural style, but the cabin is constructed from multiple silver-grey plastics that go unrelieved by soft-feel tactility or even a slash of cloth. Black carpets and grey seats underline the downmarket aura.

What’s it like?

Driving the 1.2 doesn’t provide much performance compensation either. Extracting energy from this engine is like pumping toothpaste from a tube that’s one squeeze away from the bin.

Late torque delivery is the culprit, the peak arriving at 4000rpm, and there’s not a whole lot of it. That doubtless explains the absence of a sixth gear, which it would struggle to pull.

However, the Aveo’s chassis is decent here, as explained in our road test of earlier this month. The car resists understeer well, and the suspension deals with most lumps and bumps with comfortable assuredness.

Should I buy one?

The diesel Aveo is without doubt the one to have; better real world performance and economy makes it worth the premium, if you can run to it. But even the baseline petrol represents a significant step forward from Chevrolet’s risible old Daewoo Kalos-based supemini.

Chevrolet Aveo 1.2 LT

Price: £10,995; Top speed: 107mph; 0-62mph: 13.6sec; Economy: 60.9mpg; Co2: 111g/km; Kerbweight: 1064kg; Engine: 4-cyls in-line, 1229cc; Power: 85bhp at 5600rpm; Torque: 85lb ft at 4000rpm; Gearbox: 5-speed manual.

Join the debate

Comments
3

16 February 2012

[quote Autocar]Extracting energy from this engine is like pumping toothpaste from a tube that’s one squeeze away from the bin.[/quote]

That bit makes me laugh and says it all, really! I really don't see the appeal of this car - not when you can get better superminis (Ford Fiesta, Volkswagen Polo, Vauxhall Corsa et al.) with bigger discounts.

17 February 2012

[quote Dark Isle]I really don't see the appeal of this car - not when you can get better superminis (Ford Fiesta, Volkswagen Polo, Vauxhall Corsa et al.) with bigger discounts.
[/quote]

Standard equipment......

[quote Autocar]In this form the new Chevrolet comes with an 85bhp 1.2-litre petrol engine, a five-year warranty and an impressive standard kit tally that includes air conditioning, cruise control, electric mirrors and remote locking.[/quote]

If the guy in the Chevy showroom chucks in the line of "this is a new Corsa underneath" and "look how much you save over that", to the avergae car buyer then it could claim a percentage of Vauxhall sales.

 

 

It's all about the twisties........

17 February 2012

Bear in mind that the entry model Polo can only muster 60 horsepower (metric ones at that!) and won't even reach 100mph - that will give true meaning to the toothpaste running out! Plus its CO2 emissions exceed 120g/km, so there's no compensation here either.

Despite the price of this new Chevrolet, I suspect that its true competition comes from models like the Kia Rio and Suzuki Swift: buyers will have already decided not to buy a mainstream car and will be looking for something a bit different.

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