Practical, functional, and family oriented - the station wagon supplied the needs of Americans for decades. Now they are falling to the wayside. The used car market is a wonderful source for these great vehicles. Chevrolet has several top wagons still available today.
Station wagons are quickly becoming an item of the past, regaled to history like so many other products that have fallen from favor. Still, in a way they started history in this automobile industry era. They have been around since the early 1900s. Now over a hundred years later, smaller SUVs, hatchbacks, and minivans are squeezing them out of the market. As the crossover craze continues to grow the station wagon is finding it harder to find a place. It's a shame in that station wagons fill a niche market that is perfect for families and those people constantly needing to carry loads of cargo. They have more cargo area than a hatchback and usually show better fuel economy.
They do hold the standard five passengers, but that's five passengers plus loads of cargo room. It's this space that makes the station wagon what it is. If you are interested in a wagon for its enclosed cargo area, then also consider hatchbacks. The line has blurred in today's marketplace. Some crossovers are wagons, and some vehicles are referenced as both a hatchback and a wagon. Some of the new hatchbacks also fit into the station wagon class. A station wagon is 'usually' longer with a higher roofline and a larger cargo area. In general, the station wagon will offer the rear occupants a more comfortable seat and overall ride.
Chevrolet has offered many wagons over the years. Remember the Caprice wagon, the Cavalier wagon or how about the celebrity wagon? Currently there are two good used station wagons in the lineup - without going older than ten years. The first is the Chevrolet Aveo - did you know it came as a wagon? The other station wagon available is the Chevrolet Malibu Maxx LS wagon. Of these two, only the Chevrolet Aveo is still available as a new vehicle.
2004 - 2008 Chevrolet Aveo5
The 2004 Chevrolet Aveo T200 models went on sale in the US at the end of 2003. This vehicle is still in its first generation. Originally there was the two door and four door models and with those the vehicle became the largest-selling subcompact in the US. The sedan wasn't released until 2006. The Aveo 5-door hatchback is actually a station wagon. Its name became the Aveo5 in 2007.
Although still newish, some changes have been made. In 2005, the side maker lights went from orange to clear. The next year, the rear spoiler went from the hugger style to a more pedestal style spoiler that is set several inches away from the body. In 2007, the sedan models received a complete facelift. This is also when the Aveo 5-door became known as the Aveo5. Other changes include adding in a new CD player and an MP3 player audio system. There were color changes on the inside to a more neutral look. Added in were alloy wheels, power windows, power moonroof, an upgraded stereo with auxiliary input, keyless remote access, power door locks, fog lamps, and even silver accents to go with the new color choice now available of Maui Blue.
Under the hood of this wagon is a 1.6-liter Inline four cylinder engine that produces 103 hp. It is paired to a five speed manual transmission as standard equipment. When put together, the Aveo has an EPA fuel economy rating of 27 mpg in the city and 37 mpg on the highway. There is a four speed automatic transmission available as an option.
This small car is no slouch in the safety department. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) awarded the 2007 Chevrolet Aveo5 a five star rating for the driver and a four star rating for the passenger in the frontal impact crash tests. The vehicle also received a four star rating for the front passenger and a three star rating for the rear passenger in the side impact crash tests. The Aveo received a four star rating in rollover resistance testing. Sedan pictured.
2004 - 2008 Chevrolet Malibu Maxx LS
The Chevrolet Malibu Maxx LS wagon is the longer wheel base model of the Chevrolet Malibu. It has an extended roofline and rear cargo hatch giving it a racy look. This station wagon definitely stands out from the crowd. It first came to the US market for 2004 and is part of the sixth generation of Chevrolet Malibus.
From the center of the vehicle to the front, the Maxx is the same in all ways to the sedan model. In the back however, there you'll see the difference. The station wagon isn't longer but it has different proportions making it appear bigger. Maxx is a half-inch taller than the sedan but the roof is longer. It has a shorter trunk in order to give the rear-seat passengers more seating space. The passenger space works out to 106 cubic feet - slightly more than the sedan. However, with the 60/40 rear seat split along with seven inches of forward to backward movement, the cargo room on the Maxx is versatile and spacious. When set to the furthest back setting the rear seat passengers have the same amount of legroom as the front passengers. These rear seats also recline, making them ideal for long trips.
Under the hood of the base Maxx is a 2.2-liter exotic L61 Inline four-cylinder engine producing 145 hp. The LS and LT trims have a 3.5-liter LX9 V6 engine. The Maxx SS models have a 3.9-liter LZ9 V6 engine that produces 240 hp. In 2007, there was an engine switch from the LX9 to the LZ4 V6 giving the LS and LT trims 217 horsepower. The EPA fuel economy rating is 22 miles per gallon on the highway and 30 mpg in the city.
The vehicle has many options, loads of standard features, a high safety standard and a unique skylight over the rear passengers. Sedan pictured.