Sources say that the Chevrolet Aveo RS Concept that debuted at the 2010 Detroit Auto Show will enter production in October 2012 as a 2013 model year product. When it was introduced back then, there were reports that this will be GM’s next semi-hot hatchback. Since that time, the Aveo has turned into the Sonic. GM Inside News reports that it may still bear the RS badge.
It’s expected that the hatchback will receive a more aggressive body kit and will be powered by a turbocharged version of Chevy’s 1.4-liter that delivers an output of 138 hp and 148 lb-ft (200 Nm) of torque. It’s also likely to feature a six-speed manual gearbox that will distribute power to the front wheels. It’s speculated that it will be made available in Europe.
The production version of the car won’t get the 19-inch wheels that the concept had. Instead, it will get a set of 17-inch wheels; however, the lines of the body will be kept.
Designers said at that time that the Aveo RS has a "European-inspired hot hatch look" that's intended to entice young fans. The production Sonic has numerous personalization options, similar to what Scion and MINI have done for their own models. The concept has features such as the electric blue paint scheme and the exposed head- and tail-lamps similar to those on motorcycles.
Chevrolet is a reliable, trustworthy car manufacturer with the kind of oomph and power you come to expect from an American manufacturer. There is strength, an aggression and class in its stance, the way the aesthetics suggests movement when it is stationary and the Chevrolet Sonic sedan does all this and more.
Taking cues from motorcycles and designs from around the world, the Sonic has the instantly recognizable dual-element grille and round tail-lamps of a Chevrolet. The hood profiles a strong line above the headlamps which slides gently into a side profile and up into the low roof. The side mirrors complement this look and almost vanish from viewed side-on.
In spite of all the similarities with others in the Chevrolet range, the sedan and the five-door models do display some differences. The five-door is full of aggression pushed into a two-box shape, while the sedan retains a noble, more up-market appeal.
The deceptive look of the five-door has had many wondering if it is in fact a three-door hatch instead. The unconventional nature continues with circular motorcycle-inspired rear taillamps.
Chevrolet's insistence on chrome grille surrounds and matte black inserts has earned it some credit and for those looking for something a bit more sporty, there is an option for some 17-inch alloy wheels.
The cabin continues to complement the motorcycle design cues, with an instrument panel reminiscent of most motorbikes. These are evident from the round tachometer, to the LCD readout and the large digital speedometer. There are storage compartments in both the center block and the doors. The rear seats fold flush to allow the transportation of larger items and both bucket seats and heated front seats are available.
Other highlights include: An instrument panel available in dark titanium or brick, which has some outstanding low-glass finishes. The head on the automatic shift is styled like a cobra head while the manual comes in chrome. And finally outboard temperature outlets stick out of the main panel.