2012 Chevrolet Sonic rated at 40 mpg on the highway by EPA

Article by Christian Andrei, on September 19, 2011

One of the most fuel-efficient small cars currently available in the market is the 2012 Chevrolet Sonic. It is powered by the Ecotec 1.4L turbo, which offers an EPA-estimated 40 mpg on the highway with a six-speed manual transmission and city fuel economy of 29 mpg. With these highway ratings, the Sonic is comparable to the 2012 Ford Fiesta SFE and the 2012 Hyundai Accent. The Sonic is capable of accelerating from zero to 60 mph in 8.2 seconds.

Joaquin Nuño-Whelan, Sonic vehicle line director and vehicle chief engineer, said, “Sonic changes the sub-compact stereotype and puts an end to the term ‘econobox.’”

He added that the 1.4L turbo makes for a “ridiculously fun car” that’s safe and also leads to fuel savings. The Sonic is the only sub-compact car that’s presently produced in the U.S. It entered production just this summer in Lake Orion, Mich., at GM’s Orion Assembly plant.

The 1.4L Ecotec turbocharged engine in the Sonic is SAE certified to deliver 138hp (103 kW) – approximately 18hp (14 kW) higher than the Ford Fiesta. Basically, it’s the same engine used in the Chevrolet Cruze but it comes in a smaller, lighter package intended for a better performance. Its turbo engine has a rating of 148 ft.-lbs. (200 Nm) of torque between 2,500 and 4,900 rpm. Like other turbocharged engines, it has a wide rpm range for the maximum torque. This results to an improved driving experience and performance.

The North American International Show 2011 has just unveiled Chevrolet Sonic’s 2012 model. The latest entry in the compact segment is none other than the sporty 5-door series and the four-door sedan in stylish new design. Both models of the new Chevrolet Sonic offer a wide array of features for a better overall driving experience.

Chris Perry, (Chevrolet’s VP for Marketing) likewise said that the new Sonic has integrated the elements of a Corvette into a practical, everyday compact vehicle. Basically, the new model combines functionality, creative design and driving dynamics to make it fun yet strong enough to be taken seriously by its competitors.

Meanwhile, Chevrolet’s VP for Marketing also clarified that GM is the only car company that builds small cars in the US at this time. They also believe that the new Sonic will bring value, performance and style that would change the way Americans think about small cars in general.

The signature round taillights, headlamps, fender flares and dual element grille at the front are all in the new Chevrolet Sonic. Apparently, the shape of the new side mirrors blends perfectly with the car’s overall exterior profile. On the other hand, the low roofline, high beltline and continuous lines at the sides all the more enhance the car’s amazing new design.

Meanwhile, the raked bodyline at the exterior implies non-stop movement while the epic proportions at the wheels stance displays outstanding performance. By all means, the two new line-ups demonstrate elegance, stability and strength that are rarely seen in a small car segment.

The production of new Chevrolet Sonic will begin later this year. The new $545 million investment project is also said to generate at least 1000 jobs in Detroit. Production will take place at the General Motors Orion Assembly Centre in Michigan.

Press Release

2012 Chevy Sonic with 1.4L Turbo Hits 40 MPG on Highway

The 2012 Chevrolet Sonic with the Ecotec 1.4L turbo delivers an EPA-estimated 40 mpg on the highway with a six-speed manual transmission and city fuel economy of 29 mpg.

The Sonic’s highway fuel economy makes it one of the most fuel-efficient small cars in the market, on par with the 2012 Ford Fiesta SFE and the 2012 Hyundai Accent. Along with getting 40 mpg, the 1.4L turbo Sonic can reach 60 mph in 8.2 seconds.

“Sonic changes the sub-compact stereotype and puts an end to the term ‘econobox,’” said Joaquin Nuño-Whelan, Sonic vehicle line director and vehicle chief engineer. “The 1.4L turbo saves money at the gas pump and is a ridiculously fun car to drive. So, our buyers are getting a safe, exciting and fuel efficient car at a great price with the 1.4L turbo.”

The Sonic is the only sub-compact car currently built in America. Production began earlier this summer at General Motors Orion Assembly facility in Lake Orion, Mich.

The Sonic’s 1.4L Ecotec turbocharged engine is SAE certified at 138 horsepower (103 kW) – 18 horsepower (14 kW) more than Ford Fiesta and is essentially the same engine used in the Chevrolet Cruze in a smaller, lighter package designed for a greater feeling of performance. The turbo engine is also rated at 148 ft.-lbs. (200 Nm) of torque between 2,500 and 4,900 rpm. The wide rpm range for the maximum torque – a specific trait of turbocharged engines – helps the engine deliver a better driving experience and performance. Premium design elements give the engine smoothness and durability. Features include:

  • Low-mass hollow-frame cast iron block
  • Dual overhead camshafts with continuously variable valve timing
  • Chain-driven cams
  • Roller-finger camshaft followers
  • Piston-cooling oil jets and integrated oil cooler
  • Variable-flow oil pump
  • Electronically controlled thermostat.
  • The 1.4L’s turbocharger is integrated within the exhaust manifold, for reduced weight and greater packaging flexibility. A reinforced crankshaft and stronger connecting rods deliver additional strength to support the engine’s pressurized power and torque over a wide rpm band.

The Sonic’s 1.8L manual gets fuel economy of 26 mpg city and 35 mpg highway and the automatic gets 25 mpg city and 35 mpg highway.

“Our engineers wanted to bring a car with an athletic feel and an excellent ride and handling to a segment not known for excitement,” said Nuño-Whelan. “Combine these driving characteristics with the 40-mpg fuel economy rating and we think we have a winning combination for Sonic drivers.”

The suggested retail price of the Sonic begins at $14,495 including destination but excluding tax, title, license and dealer fees. 

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