2012 Chevrolet Sonic is not an Aveo
General Motors seems intent on banishing all memories of the unloved Aveo – so much so that it's gone and renamed its entry-level fighter in the States. While we're still not 100-percent in love with the name (we can't get visions of spiky-haired hedgehogs out of our heads...), all three flavors of the Sonic do appear to be vastly improved over the machine they replace, though one of them, the Z Spec, is still in the concept stage.
More than anything else, they look vastly better both inside and out, but until we get a stint behind the wheel we'll hold off final judgment. According to Chris Perry, vice president of Chevrolet marketing, "The all-new Chevrolet Sonic blends the practicality of a small car with the passion for driving that Chevrolet vehicles like the Corvette are known for." That won't be the only time you'll ever hear someone mention the Sonic in the same sentence as the Corvette. In fact, Chevy tells us that Corvette engineers are responsible for the ride and handling of the sub-compact.
The Sonic will be available in both sedan and hatchback bodystyles and with either a 1.8-liter four-cylinder mated to a five-speed manual or six-speed automatic, or a 1.4-liter turbocharged mill with 138 horsepower that's hooked to either an automatic or manual with six forward ratios. For those keeping track, these are the same engines available in the slightly larger Cruze. You'll also get a gauge cluster inspired by motorcycles, OnStar connectivity, 10 airbags and plenty more.