GM Daewoo introduced the "Daewoo Kalos" in September 2002, based on a then-new T200 platform, replacing the Daewoo Lanos (T100). Under development before Daewoo's bankruptcy, the Kalos was the company's first new model introduction following its subsequent takeover by General Motors. Manufacture of the Kalos began in early March 2002, with pre-production prototypes shown at the Geneva Auto Show in April 2002. The nameplate Kalos derives from the Greek word καλός (kalós) for "beautiful" and "good".
Chevrolet Aveo LT five-door (US)
Chevrolet Aveo sedan (US)
Originally designed by Italdesign, the Kalos derives directly from the "Kalos Dream" concept vehicle first presented at the 2000 Paris Motor Show and subsequent developmental concepts at the 2001 Frankfurt Motor Show, 2002 Geneva Auto Show, and 2003 at the Geneva Show. During this three-year development period Daewoo was struggling financially, with the ultimate fate of the company and the concept vehicle remaining uncertain.
The Kalos was sold in three and four available body styles: a 4-door sedan and 5-door hatchback from the beginning of production in 2002, and a 3-door hatchback available in certain European markets beginning in 2005. Two different T200 front-end styling designs were sold. When released in 2002, the T200 headlamps were detached from the horizontal amber turn signal strip, located directly below. This detached style, used primarily in South Korea and North America, was used in conjunction with a semi-elliptical grille. When sales in Europe began in 2003, the headlights were an integrated unit that slanted upwards from the "V-shaped" grille towards the front fenders. In Australia, when the Daewoo Kalos was introduced in 2003, the hatchback featured the integrated lighting arrangement, with the detached style used to differentiate the sedans. In South Korea, where the detached lights were used at first, the integrated design was later utilized as a facelift.
The T200 sedan and five-door hatchback featured a swage line running along the lower body to the rear door, which kinks downward prominently on the five-door. Five-doors also feature a side window in the C/D pillar with a distinctively angled lower edge. Interiors feature a circular motif throughout.
Chevrolet Aveo Eco Logic 3-door (Italy)
Chevrolet Aveo 1.4 5-door (Singapore)
Chevrolet Aveo LT sedan (Chile)
GM introduced a facelifted sedan at Auto Shanghai 2005, designed in cooperation with PATAC. Bearing the internal code T250 and sold in South Korea as the "Daewoo Gentra", revisions included exterior styling changes, a new interior instrument panel and minor equipment changes, including increased sound deadening. Incorporation of the radio antenna into the rear glass and extensive wind tunnel testing helped reduce the coefficient of drag from 0.348 to 0.326.
A facelifted hatchback with the sedan's updated instrument panel was presented as the Chevrolet Aveo during the Frankfurt Motor Show 2007, to be marketed in Europe and North America. The Korean market received its own distinct restyle of the hatchback, the Gentra X, whose bumper without the distinctly "Chevrolet" split grille was also used for the Pontiac, Holden and Suzuki variants.
With launch of the Gentra X in South Korea, GMDAT had replaced engines of T250. 1.2 L (1206 cc) S-TEC II engine was updated with features such as dual overhead camshaft (DOHC) and timing chain (older version has timing belt) system. 1.6 L E-TEC II engine has been replaced with an updated GEN-III Ecotec Family 1 engine with new features such as variable valve timing mechanism.
Ravon Nexia R3
Ravon Nexia R3
The facelifted Chevrolet Aveo T250 sedan was launched to the Russian market in 2016 as Ravon Nexia R3. The car is produced at the GM Uzbekistan plant. The Ravon Nexia R3 is available with the 1.5-liter petrol engine (105 hp) paired with the 5-speed manual or the 6-speed automatic.
Chevrolet Cobalt for Brazilian, Russian and other markets.
A version of the T250 is sold in the Brazilian market under the name Chevrolet Cobalt since 2011. Unrelated to the previous car sold in North America, this Cobalt replaced the aging local Chevrolet Corsa. The car is equipped with a 1.4 and 1.8 Econo.Flex engine. Although sporting a similar front end style, it is not directly related to the Chevrolet Agile, since it shares the overall underpinnings with the Sonic, while the Agile is derived from the considerably older Opel Corsa B, from 1993.
The second generation Aveo now renamed Sonic debuted at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, using the Gamma II global subcompact platform. It had been previewed earlier in the year as the Aveo RS concept, shown in concept form with 19-inch wheels and a M32 six-speed manual transmission mated to a 1.4-liter turbocharged Ecotec engine, rated at 103 kW (138 hp).
Development of the second-generation Aveo was led by GM Korea, with Opel engineers leading platform development along with significant input from engineers from Australia's Holden and Chevrolet of the United States. The Aveo marked the debut of the Gamma II global subcompact platform. Exterior design was led by Australian designer Ondrej Koromhaz, of Holden who was on assignment to GM Korea from 2005 to 2007. Koromhaz described his goal for the Aveo as being a "four-seat motorcycle" and took design inspiration from motorcycles, notably in the Aveo's exposed headlights and motorcycle-style instrument cluster. For Chevrolet Sonic models built in the United States, the Sonic features suspension tuning by Corvette Racing engineer John Buttermore.
Marketing and production
Chevrolet markets the new Aveo under the Chevrolet Sonic nameplate in the U.S., Canadian, Mexican, Colombian, Argentinian, Brazilian, Chilean, Japanese, Israeli, Middle East, South African and ASEAN markets. In Australia and New Zealand it was sold as the Holden Barina until stocks ran out in early 2019.
The North American-spec Sonic is available as a 4-door sedan or five-door hatchback. It comes with a 1.8-liter inline-four producing 101 kW (135 hp) and 169 N⋅m (125 lb⋅ft) torque, or a 1.4-liter turbo inline-four producing 103 kW (138 hp) and 201 N⋅m (148 lb⋅ft) torque. The 1.8-liter engine uses one of few cast-iron block with timing belt; the 1.4L turbo engine uses a timing chain to drive the camshafts. The 1.8-liter inline-four is mated to a standard five-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission, while the 1.4-liter turbo has a six-speed manual transmission. The Sonic is, notably, the only car in its class to be assembled in America. For the 2015 model year, the US Sonic added OnStar with 4G LTE and standard built-in Wi-Fi hotspot (includes 3GB/three-month data trial), a 1.4L turbo engine that became standard on LTZ models, and a new exterior color, Blue Velvet.
On August 2, 2011, the Sonic had entered production at Orion Assembly, with the first cars arriving at dealerships in October.
The Sonic uses a water-based "three-wet" paint process that eliminates the need for a primer bake oven; this reduces the paint shop footprint by 10%, and uses 50% less energy per vehicle painted. Chevy is the first US automaker to use this process.
The Bolt (based on a different platform) joined the Aveo on the Orion assembly line in 2016, at a combined rate of 90,000 per year.
The Barina sold in Australia and New Zealand was sourced from South Korea and available only with the 1.6 L Family 1 engine, with either a 5 speed manual or conventional 4 or 6 speed automatic.
Asia, South America and Russia
Chevrolet Sonic had its ASEAN debut at the Bangkok Motor Show 2012 in March 2012, as both a 4-door sedan and 5-door hatchback. It was rolled out from GM's facility in Rayong, Thailand on July 3, 2012 as a 4-door sedan. Later, Chevrolet Thailand expected 3 new trim variants; LS, LT and LTZ, in both the 4-door sedan and 5-door hatchback models (the LS would be available only with the 4-door sedan) which would run on the 1.4-liter engine with the option of 5-speed manual or 6-speed automatic transmission. Pricing is expected to start from BHT548,000 in base 1.4 LS 4-door with a 5-speed manual. Delivery of the 4-door sedan started in late of July 2012, and the hatchback followed in August 2012. The Thailand-built Sonic was exported to other ASEAN countries like Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia. Production ceased in 2017.
The Japanese model was unveiled at the Summer Sonic 2011 event in QVC Marine Field and later in the Summer Sonic 2012 event in QVC Marine Field. Production models went on sale on November 12, 2011. Early models included the 5-door hatchback with a 1.6-litre I-4 Ecotec (115PS) engine, and a 6-speed automatic transmission with TAPshift. The base model is based on the equivalent of North American LTZ trim level, while the LT model includes alloy wheels and metallic paint. The width dimension at 1735mm does not meet compact class tax bracket regulations set forth by the Japanese Government. The smaller engines allow some operating expense relief with regards to the annual Japanese road tax obligation.
The Sonic is also assembled at the GM Colmotores plant in Bogotá, Colombia, where it was initially introduced for the domestic market only and later also exported to countries in the Andean region. As of December, 2012, production was also underway at the GAZ (Gorky Automobile Plant) plant in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, but during 2015, the contract was discontinued.
The Sonic was assembled in India from completely knocked down kits sourced from South Korea. It was available with the 1.4L turbo-charged Family 0 and 1.8L naturally aspirated Family 1 engines. Production ceased in 2017 when General Motors stopped selling cars in India.
2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS (US)
The trim levels for the U.S.-market Chevrolet Sonic are as follows:
LS/1LS: Power door locks, manual windows, AM-FM stereo with auxiliary audio input jack and four speakers, fifteen-inch black-painted steel wheels with plastic wheel covers, cloth seating surfaces, OnStar, air conditioning, a 1.8L I4 engine with five-speed manual transmission, and rear split-folding seat.
LT/1LT adds: Power windows, AM-FM stereo with single-disc CD/MP3 player, Bluetooth with Stereo Streaming, and auxiliary audio input jack, fifteen-inch alloy wheels, and steering wheel-mounted audio system controls. And optional mylink system with rear vision camera.
LTZ/1LZ adds: AM-FM touch-screen stereo with USB and auxiliary audio input jacks and Bluetooth with Stereo Streaming and app capabilities via MyLink, seventeen-inch alloy wheels, leatherette seating surfaces, 6-speed automatic transmission, a 1.4L I4 engine, and remote engine start. Also includes rear vision camera with guidelines.
RS adds: Unique dark silver alloy wheels, rear wing spoiler, RS badging, body kit, leatherette seats with suede inserts, and 6-speed manual transmission, and an upgraded 1.4L I4 engine.
2011 SEMA concepts (2011)
The Sonic Z-Spec #1 is a turbocharged Sonic five-door with concept Z-Spec accessories. It included Z-Spec ground effects, a spoiler, unique grille and graphics package, Torch Red body colour, Z-Spec concept 18-inch wheels, Cobalt Red cabin features perforated black suede seat inserts, a Z-Spec sport pedal kit, sport shift knob and a racing-style flat-bottom steering wheel, performance brakes with four-piston calipers, a new high-flow exhaust system and performance suspension parts.
The Sonic Z-Spec No. 2 is based on Sonic with 1.4L turbo engine and six-speed manual transmission. It includes Flat White body colour with Torch Red accents, a more aggressive ground effects package, unique grille, rear spoiler and graphics package, Z-Spec concept 18-inch wheels, a re-trimmed interior with Z-Spec sport pedal kit, Z-Spec sport shift knob and a flat-bottom steering wheel, custom racing seats with the Z-Spec logo. Performance upgrades include brakes with four-piston calipers, a high-flow exhaust system and suspension parts.
The Sonic Z-Spec 4D Concept is a concept car with a touring car-style motif, based on Sonic sedan with turbo 1.4L engine and six-speed manual transmission. It included Ashen Grey Metallic body colour, concept Z-Spec ground effects, rear spoiler, grille, "Chevrolet" graphics and larger Z-Spec concept 18-inch wheels, Dark Titanium interior upholstery with Cobalt Red accents, Z-Spec sport pedal kit, aluminum sport shift knob, a flat-bottom steering wheel (trimmed with Cobalt Red suede). Performance upgrades include four-piston caliper brakes, a high-flow exhaust system and suspension parts.
The Sonic Dusk included Berlin Blue exterior, a mild concept ground effects package, unique grille treatment, 18-inch concept wheels in dark Galvano Silver, Mojave leather interior has custom seat inserts, Z-Spec shift knob with satin chrome trim, Z-Spec sport pedals and accessory interior trim kit, a suede-trimmed flat-bottom steering wheel, custom audio system and brake and suspension upgrades.
The Sonic Super 4 is a race car concept that demonstrates Chevrolet's new small car performance potential, based on Sonic with Ecotec 1.4L turbo engine and six-speed manual transmission. It includes Chevrolet racing graphics, carbon fiber lower splitter, carbon fiber rocker panel extensions, carbon fiber rear diffuser, tinted headlamps and taillights, Concept Z-Spec high wing rear spoiler, tow hooks, 18x7.5-inch satin black wheels with street-legal racing tires, SCCA-approved 1¾ -inch chromoly roll cage, SCCA-approved inner and outer window nets, Z-Spec pedal kit, racing instrumentation, racing seat with five-point harness, fire suppression system, rearview camera system, racing steering wheel with quick disconnect, adjustable coil-over struts and spring kit, four-piston front brake calipers with two-piece drilled rotors, two-piston rear brake calipers with one-piece drilled rotors, low-restriction air intake and filter, 2-inch cat-back straight-pipe exhaust.
The Sonic Boom Concept is a sound system-based concept that delivers high performance of an auditory type, designed with Kicker. Based on the Sonic with the Ecotec 1.4L turbo engine and six-speed automatic transmission, it offers special paint finishes and graphics. The wheels are 19x9-inches, matched by a ground effects package, as well as a special grille and spoiler. The interior features racing seats, various leather accents, and a custom sound system. The vehicles were unveiled at the 2011 SEMA show.
Sonic JBL Sound Limited (2012–)
It is a limited (50 units) version of Chevrolet Sonic 5-door hatchback for Japan market, with:
JBL 8-speaker audio system (2 front tweeters, 2 front woofers, 2 rear tweeters, 2 rear woofers)
front fog lamp
body colour matching rear spoiler
'SOUND LIMITED' plate
The vehicle went on sale 2012-02-25, and was unveiled in NEOPASA Shimizu.
HOKT GinRhymes edition (2012–)
It is a limited (5 units) version of Chevrolet Sonic 5-door hatchback for Japan market, commemorating 10th anniversary debut of hip hop artist HOKT. It included:
E&G mesh grille
4-piece aero kit and rear spoiler
fog lamp kit
original head rest embroidering
The vehicle was unveiled at G★SPA PARADISE event in Jyozankei Grand Hotel. The vehicle went on sale 2012-03-18.
Sonic Sportline (2012–)
It is a version of Chevrolet Sonic 5-door hatchback with 1.6L Ecotec (115PS) engine for Japan market, with:
rally stripes running at length of body from top
fog lamps at front fascia
choice of 5 body colours (summit white, carbon flash metallic, Boracay blue metallic, flame red, switchblade silver metallic), 3 rally stripe colours (black, white, silver), 2 wheel colours (silver or black)
The vehicle was unveiled in 2012 Tokyo Auto Salon, followed by Nagoya Auto Trend.
Sonic Dusk (2012–)
The production intent car is a version of Sonic sedan with Ecotec 1.4L turbocharged engine and six-speed transmission, based on the 2011 SEMA concept. The SEMA show vehicle included a production-intent package with ground effects, a rear spoiler, 18-inch aluminum wheels with a Pearl Nickel finish, Mojave accent stitching and tan-color door panel and instrument panel accents, and MyLink infotainment system.
The production intent vehicle was unveiled at the 2012 SEMA show. Production model includes a choice of six-speed manual or automatic transmission.
At the 2016 New York International Auto Show, Chevrolet revealed the facelift North American version of the Sonic hatchback and sedan. The facelift brought a restyled front fascia, new LED taillights, and refreshed equipment.
The Barina sold in Australia and New Zealand was available only with 6 speed conventional automatic, the 4 speed model being dropped, with the same 5 speed manual in the standard model.
In marketing the Sonic, GM had the car driven in a full 360-degree rotation off a ramp and over an oversized skateboard. In addition, GM produced a commercial for Super Bowl XLVI called "Stunt Anthem", which featured 360 rotation with other Sonics skydiving doing a bungee jump and scenes from OK Go's music video for the song "Needing/Getting." The song featured in the commercial is We Are Young by Fun. The Sonic is the only Subcompact car sold in North America that is built in the United States.
The Wall Street Journal has reported that Chevrolet is ending production on the Sonic in the United States, possibly after the 2019 model year, citing declining sales, a competitive subcompact vehicle segment, and a move towards focusing on its more profitable products, like SUVs. It is not known at this point if the car will continue to be sold outside North America. The Sonic will be discontinued in Canada after the 2018 model year. In March 2019, the Aveo was discontinued in South Korea.
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