2013 Chevrolet Spark 2LT Review: Introduction
The 2013 Chevrolet Spark is a curious entry into the subcompact space. At first glance, the vehicle would appear to slot in directly below the recently-added Chevrolet Sonic hatchback, with an eye towards providing bargain-conscious buyers a lower purchase price and better fuel mileage thanks to its smaller package and even tinier engine. The funny thing is, when objectively evaluating the Chevrolet Spark against the Sonic, one finds more similarities in MSRP and fuel mileage than differences. The Spark is only about $2,500 cheaper initially than the Sonic hatch, and delivers but more one-mpg in its combined EPA rating. Add in the fact that the Spark is considerably smaller inside, has a much weaker engine, and seats one fewer passenger, and the value-based argument for selecting it over its larger sibling becomes somewhat harder to make.
Who, then, is the 2013 Chevrolet Spark aimed at? According to General Motors, the Spark isn't designed to dramatically best the Sonic in fuel mileage or pricing but rather appeal to urban dwellers who simply want to drive - and park - the smallest possible car they can without making too many sacrifices in terms of comfort. Whether such a buyer truly exists is up for debate, but given that most of the competing models in the Spark's immediate size vicinity, such as the Smart fortwo, the Scion iQ and the FIAT 500, are either considerably more expensive (Fiat, Scion) or considerably less practical (smart) the vehicle seems to have the field all to itself for the time being.