Baby Chevy goes back to basics
8 February 2005

Daewoo has just been rebranded as Chevrolet in the UK. You can’t have failed to notice: Chevy is spending £4m on what it describes as a ‘roadblock’ advertising campaign in the press and, from 1 March, on TV.

That’s when this car goes on sale. It’s the three-door version of the five-door Daewoo Kalos we’ve had for two years, and until the S3X off-roader arrives later this year, it will enjoy the distinction of being the only Chevy not previously to have been on sale as a Daewoo.

With the £6995 1.2 S five-door no longer offered, the 1.2 S three-door inherits its price and becomes the cheapest Kalos – the five-door SE now costs £7895 and the 1.4 SX three-door £8395.

It’s a pity Chevrolet didn’t shave five hundred quid off the price to compensate for the loss of two doors and make this car a closer rival for the entry-level Daihatsu Charade and Fiat Panda.

But it’s still the Kalos to have. These cars are best bought bum-basic, though the S has a CD player, electric windows and three-point seatbelts in the back as standard.

The cabin is exceptionally bright and spacious, the seats firm and height-adjustable and the dash looks good, even if the plastics are cheap.

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

The car rides decently – probably the most important dynamic trait in a car of this class – although it doesn’t do anything else so well. The steering is vague and light, there’s lots of body roll and understeer and the gearchange is clunky.

But the 72bhp eight-valve engine pushes it along with sufficient pace and refinement to make you glad you didn’t pick the more expensive 1.4.

Ben Oliver

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week