Cars Chevrolet Chevrolet Sonic

Chevrolet Sonic

2014 Chevrolet Sonic

2014 Chevrolet Sonic High Resolution Exterior
- image 511247
  • Chevrolet Sonic
  • Year:
    2014
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    inline-4
  • Transmission:
    6-speed Manual, 6-speed Auto Available
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    138
  • MPG(Cty):
    29
  • MPG(Hwy):
    40
  • Torque @ RPM:
    148
  • Energy:
    EFI
  • Displacement:
    1.4 L
  • 0-60 time:
    7.8 sec.
  • Top Speed:
    108 mph (Est.)
  • Layout:
    Front-engine, Front-drive
  • Price:
    17185
  • car segment:
  • body style:

The Chevy Sonic gets so little coverage from car magazines that it is easy to forget it even exists. Even the Chevrolet team does not seem too excited about the subcompact’s prospects with American buyers. Maybe that is why most of the official images are just renderings of the car inserted into picturesque backdrops via Photoshop…

If Chevrolet can’t be bothered to actually take its mini car to the desert for a photo shoot, why should buyers care?

There are a few reasons that the Chevrolet Sonic is storming up the sales charts recently to become the top-selling supermini in the U.S. for the last few months. Offered in five-door hatchback or four-door sedan body styles, the Sonic line is well-positioned in style, price and interior tech to overcome rivals, like the Hyundai Accent, Kia Rio and Ford Fiesta.

A new-for-2013 RS trim added lower gear ratios to help improve acceleration in the top 1.4-liter turbo engine guise. While relatively exciting versus the bread-and-butter LS, LT and LTZ trims, the 2014 RS deserves a review of its own – published in the near future so check back for more details.

The focus here is on the volume model sedan and hatchback Chevrolet Sonics with highlights of the new-for-2014 features and options.

Click past the jump for the full review of the 2014 Chevrolet Sonic.

62 photos / 2 videos

Latest Chevrolet Sonic news and reviews:

As the SUV Obsession Continues, Ford and Chevy Look to Light Their Sedan Lineup

As the SUV Obsession Continues, Ford and Chevy Look to Light Their Sedan Lineup

This isn’t the first time when reports of sedans being discontinued have erupted

It looks like sedans are slowly getting extinct. We have seen the Volvo S80 and the Mitsubishi Lancer being discontinued in 2017, and next in line are sedans from Chevrolet and Ford. According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, Ford and GM will drop a number of sedans as crossovers have become the priority choice of consumers. Which cars are these? Read on to know.

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Ford to Kill off the Fiesta and Taurus in the U.S. for Good; GM Killing off the Chevy Sonic

Ford to Kill off the Fiesta and Taurus in the U.S. for Good; GM Killing off the Chevy Sonic

The evolving auto industry means that more old-school models have become expendable

Ford and General Motors are doing a little house cleaning, and a few models from each brand are expected to get discarded in the near future. On the chopping block on Ford’s end are the Taurus and the Fiesta. They’re expected to be joined by the Chevrolet Sonic after a Wall Street Journal report revealed that all three models are now on borrowed time in the U.S.

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2017 Chevrolet Sonic

2017 Chevrolet Sonic

Chevy’s subcompact puts on a new face for the New York Auto Show

Revealed at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, the current Chevrolet Sonic is a little long in the tooth compared to its main competitors, but that didn’t stop it from being a hot seller that brings new, younger customers to the brand in the U.S. But, while Chevrolet isn’t planning on ditching the already six-year-old Gamma II platform, the Sonic received a significant makeover ahead of the 2016 New York Auto Show.

Compared to last year’s model, which also gained a few nips and tucks, the 2017 Sonic is miles ahead in terms of exterior design. Solid improvements were operated inside as well, where a new infotainment system and the latest connectivity technologies are available. Chevy did ignore the drivetrain department, but the standard 1.8-liter and the optional 1.4-liter turbo provide just enough power for the small compact, along with excellent fuel economy. The hatch also comes with a couple of segment-first features, but we’ll talk about that in detail in the review below.

“The new styling and features of the 2017 Sonic reinforce its position as a fun, efficient small car with leading technology – all at an affordable price,” said Steve Majoros, director of marketing at Chevrolet. “This is an important segment for Chevrolet, as we really have an opportunity to introduce ourselves to new buyers and show them what we’re all about.”

The new Sonic goes on sale this fall with three trims to choose from for the sedan version. The hatch, on the other hand, will only be offered in RS guise.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Chevrolet Sonic.

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Chevrolet Sonic Earns 2015 Top Safety Pick

Chevrolet Sonic Earns 2015 Top Safety Pick

Small in stature doesn’t always mean a car is unsafe, and that couldn’t be more true than with the 2015 Chevrolet Sonic. The IIHS solidified this recently by awarding the small econobox its coveted Top Safety Pick award after a disappointing showing initially.

“They sure don’t build them like they used to,” and it’s a dang good thing too. Years ago, folks thought the bigger and stronger a car was meant it was a safer car. More recently, automakers found that strategically positioning weak spots in cars, known as “crumple zones,” helped keep passengers safer by using the energy of a crash to fold these spots like an accordion instead of causing trauma to the passengers.

Crumple zones are old news though, as automakers have to deal with new and changing safety tests with each passing year. One such test is the controversial and hard-to-pass small overlap frontal crash. The 2015 Sonic initially did below average on this test, netting it a “marginal” rating from the IIHS and leaving it one “good” rating shy of the Top Safety Pick award.

Well, Chevy went to task improving the front-end structure, the doorsill, and the door hinge pillar on the 2015 Sonic in February 2015. With these improvements in place, the IIHS noted that intrusion into the driver’s space dropped from 6 inches to just 4 inches, resulting in a lower likelihood of injury. Additionally, the front and curtain airbags protected the crash-test dummy’s head better than in the previous test. In the previous test, the airbag deployed late, resulting in an increased potential for injury.

Those improvements were enough to jump the Sonic two levels in its small overlap test, earning it a “good” rating.

The 2015 Sonic also received “good” ratings in the moderate overlap front, side, roof strength, and head restraint tests on its way to the Top Safety Pick award.

Keep in mind that this award applies only to the Sonic hatchbacks and sedans built after February 2015.

Continue reading for the full story.

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2015 Chevrolet Sonic Accessories Concept

2015 Chevrolet Sonic Accessories Concept

Chevrolet’s going to an all-too familiar script with its SEMA-bound offerings. Over the past few years, the Chevrolet Sonic has been a SEMA staple and this year figures to be no different. I already talked about the Sonic Performance Concept so now it’s time to dive into the other Sonic we’ll be seeing at the 2014 SEMA Auto Show. This model is called the Sonic Accessories Concept and like the Performance Concept, this one isn’t really a concept, but a showpiece of what the Sonic could look like if it was covered in Chevy’s latest lineup of accessories.

In other words, this is what Chevrolet wants you to buy in the event you’re in the market for a Sonic.

Yes, the Sonic Accessories Concept creates a nice display models for the many possibilities customers have for mixing and matching new accessories available for the hatchback. The concept should give us a look at the optional accessories we can expect to see for the Sonic. There’s a lot to choose from, covering a wide range of the hatchback’s real estate.

Whether it’s the exterior, the interior, or even upgrades to the suspension, there are plenty of new digs to go around for Chevy’s little hot hatch. The Sonic Accessories Concept shows us what’s possible. Hopefully, we’ll learn more about it when it makes its debut at the 2014 SEMA Auto Show.

Click past the jump to read more about the Chevrolet Sonic Accessories Concept.

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2014 Chevrolet Sonic Performance Concept

2014 Chevrolet Sonic Performance Concept

Ever since the second-generation Chevrolet Sonic burst onto the scene in 2011, we’ve seen the loveable hatchback become a staple at the SEMA Auto Show. We’ve seen it dress up as the Rocky Carmichael All-Activity Concept. We’ve seen it show up as the Sonic Boom Concept. Heck, we’ve even seen it come to SEMA as the Z-Spec 4D Concept. This year, the Sonic returns to the biggest aftermarket show in the world in the guise of the Sonic Performance Concept.

It doesn’t have quite the flashy name as its predecessors, but the Sonic Performance Concept is actually less of a showpiece prototype and more of a performance-tuned, ready-to-be-produced hatchback. To be clear, Chevy hasn’t said anything about sending the Sonic Performance Concept to dealerships, but it’s not far-fetched to imagine it happening soon.

The Sonic Performance Concept features a laundry list of upgrades to its appearance, suspension, and engine performance. The concept was created to showcase how the Sonic can appeal to a new generation of young enthusiasts by drawing on the company’s legacy of high-performance capabilities.

I would love to see the Sonic Performance Concept get turned into a production model, even if it’s in a limited capacity.

Hopefully, Chevy realizes the same thing with what it has with this SEMA-bound Sonic.

Click past the jump to read more about the Chevrolet Sonic Performance Concept.

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10 Best Budget Enthusiast Machines Under $20k

10 Best Budget Enthusiast Machines Under $20k

There is an overlying stigma that trying to buy a fun and sporty car will cost you an arm and a leg. We decided to set the record straight, and with a shoe-string budget of only $20,000 we have been able to come up with 10 brand-new cars that will make any enthusiast happy without breaking the bank. To make the list, each car must demonstrate a certain level of character, fun, and practicality. Cars were chosen based on weight, handling ability, and power. Also, every car chosen offers a manual transmission on the engine/trim level that we have chosen. So fun, practical and available with three-pedals. There isn’t much more that you really need when looking for a fun and cheap car.

Before you start frying about the great cars that are available for just a little bit more like the Mazda Miata and Ford Fiesta ST, or the amazing cars you can get used, we wanted to focus on the really cheap side of things. If you are already stretching your budget to get a $19-$20k car, buying something at $23k is just not an option. Also, if you are already stretching your budget to hit that $20k mark, the last thing you can afford is the cost of repairs and maintenance that comes with every used car. A full warranty is a very important thing for this market.

With all of that out of the way, let’s jump into this. As always, feel free to tell me how awesome and right all my choices are. If you think I left something off this list, let me know that too. Now hit that jump and enjoy.

See our top ten enthusiast cars for less than $20,000 after the break.

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"Transformers: Age of Extinction" will Feature Five Chevy Models

"Transformers: Age of Extinction" will Feature Five Chevy Models

With only two months left until the upcoming "Transformers: Age of Extinction" movie hits theaters, Chevrolet has confirmed the full lineup of Bowtie-badged vehicles that will be featured in the new installment.

The main star of the new film will obviously be Bumblebee, a futuristic concept based on the fifth-generation Camaro. The Pearl Yellow car will return to the silver screen as the movie’s leading attraction for the fourth time since its debut in 2007.

Besides the Bumblebee, Chevy has prepped four more vehicles for the new Transformers film, ranging from the Corvette Stingray, which will convert to Autobot Crosshairs, to the Trax crossover, and even a heavily modified 1967 Camaro SS. Also included is a Sonic dressed as a rally car will appear in some of the action-packed scenes.

In addition to prepping the aforementioned vehicles and providing them to the production crew, General Motors also allowed Paramount to film at its Warren Technical Center, Milford Proving Ground and even its Lansing Grand River Assembly Plant.

The highly anticipated "Transformers: Age of Extinction" movie is set to arrive in theaters on June 27th, 2014.

Click past the jump to find out why it matters.

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Video: Chevrolet Sonic RS Sets World Record for the Farthest Reverse Jump

Video: Chevrolet Sonic RS Sets World Record for the Farthest Reverse Jump

The Chevy Sonic doesn’t get much pub on these pages, as it’s not necessarily a car that inspires you to hit the race track. Rather, it is a relatively timid hatchback/sedan that gets outstanding mpg and has a low MSRP. Well, today is an exception, as the Sonic RS has just been part of a rather entertaining world record.

Rob Dyrdek, just two years removed from completing a 360-degree kick-flip in a Sonic, decided he wanted to see how far he could jump the compact hatch. That in itself isn’t all that impressive, but the fact that he did this jump in reverse certainly piqued my interest a bit.

Dyrdek managed to clear a gap of 89 feet 3-1/4 inches in reverse, putting himself and the Sonic into the Guinness Book of World Records. Nice work, felas...

And to think, I know some people that can barely back out of a garage without nearly killing themselves, and this dudes jumping cars nearly 90 feet in reverse. Check out the above video to see the record-breaking run.

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2014 Chevrolet Sonic Dusk Sedan

2014 Chevrolet Sonic Dusk Sedan

It took a little longer than many of us expected, but Chevrolet has finally released the production version of the Sonic Dusk Sedan at the 2013 Los Angeles Show.

If any of you remember, the model was first shown as a concept at the 2011 SEMA Auto Show and, unlike a lot of the models we see at SEMA, the Sonic Dusk was given the green light as a production model. There are not a lot of noticeable changes from the concept to the production model, but that’s actually a good thing, seeing as the Sonic Dusk Sedan comes with a host of sophisticated new features that really sets it apart from any other Sonic variant

A unique exterior color — Ashen Grey Metallix — is one of the unquestioned highlights of the Sonic Dusk Sedan, complemented nicely by matte appointments on the upper and lower grilles, door handle inserts and rear license plate trim. The vehicle also has a new rear spoiler, a ground-effects package, a set of 18-inch aluminum wheels with its own Midnight Silver matte finish and four-wheel disc brakes — an setup that is exclusive to the Sonic Dusk.

Inside, the modifications are limited to Jet Black leather-trimmed seats with suede-microfiber accents and Mojave tan inserts. Not exactly lighting the world on fire, but enough to give the car’s cabin that added character to set it apart from the crowd.

No performance modifications were given, so expect the Sonic Dusk to have the same 1.4-liter Ecotec turbocharged engine that produces 138 horsepower and 148 pound-feet of torque. This is good enough to hit 60 mph in around 10 seconds with a top speed of about 115 mph and a fuel returns of 29 mpg in the city and 40 mpg in the highway.

Click past the jump to read about the 2013 Chevrolet Sonic Dusk Concept

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2014 Chevrolet Sonic RS Sedan

2014 Chevrolet Sonic RS Sedan

Chevrolet expanded its Sonic lineup with the addition of two new sedan models: the Sonic RS and Sonic Dusk. Both will go on sale in spring 2014 and will be manufactured at Orion Assembly in Michigan. The first of them, Sonic RS, will be priced at $20,530 including $825 destination.

The new Sonic RS sedan is offered with the same Ecotec 1.4 liter turbo engine found in the Sonic RS hatchback, which delivers a total of 138 horsepower and 148 pound-feet of torque. The engine is mated to a standard six-speed manual or an optional six-speed automatic.

There will also be a sport-tuned suspension and lowered ride height for better handling and a sportier look. Fuel economy will also be identical to the hatchback at 27 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway on manual transmission-equipped models.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Chevrolet Sonic RS sedan.

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2014 Chevrolet Sonic Ricky Carmichael All-Activity Concept

2014 Chevrolet Sonic Ricky Carmichael All-Activity Concept

At the 2011 SEMA Show, Ricky Carmichael unveiled his first Sonic All Activity Vehicle. Now two years later, Carmichael returns to SEMA with a new Sonic All Activiy Vehicle. This time around, it’s equipped with an all-new performance package with parts from Chevrolet Performance.

For the exterior, the concept features a satin-black paint combined with blue accents and custom graphics. The aerodynamic kit includes a new rear wing spoiler, smoked lamp housings, ground-effects package, a unique grille and a THULE roof rack For some, this may be a little over the top, but the stark contrast of dark and bright looks pretty sick to us. .

For the interior, Carmichael added a dark green and black leather instrument panel trim, door trim with lime green piping, a green- and black-trimmed, flat-bottom steering wheel and an upgraded sound system.

Chevrolet Performance installed its Turbo Stage Kit, a high-flow exhaust system and a cold-air intake for the 1.4-liter, turbocharged four-banger engine. The concept sits on an 18-inch wheel-and-tire package that are colored gloss-black with a green lip. Chevrolet didn’t release the performance details, but we’re willing to bet the power jumps from the base 138 horsepower to about 160 horsepower.

Helping in the twist is a a new suspension kit that drops the ride height. Rounding out the mods is a new brake package with Wilwood front calipers.

Click past the jump to read more about the standard Chevrolet Sonic.

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2013 Chevrolet Performance Sonic RS Concept

2013 Chevrolet Performance Sonic RS Concept

Chevrolet Sonic may be a small car, but with the right updates, it can become quite mean and aggressive. A good example is this Sonic RS Concept car that will be unveiled at the 2013 SEMA Show on November 5th. The concept was designed by Chevrolet Performance, and it previews elements that will be available at all Chevrolet dealers.

The concept was updated from top to bottom, and it includes engine performance, suspension, brake and appearance upgrades. This Sonic RS is painted in a unique Lemon Peel Yellow hue combined with blue graphics, and tinted headlamps and fog lamps. The interior gets seats in black leather with Lark Yellow contrast stitching.

Under the hood, the 1.4-liter, turbocharged engine receives a Stage Kit, cold-air induction and a high-flow exhaust system that will allow it to deliver more power than its stock 138 horsepower and 148 pound-feet of torque. Chevy is keeping the output level is being kept a secret for now, but we are thinking it’ll land in the 160-horsepower range.

Along with the engine upgrades, Chevy also equipped this sonic with a track-tuned suspension system that lowers the car’s ride and offers a sportier appearance. The concept sits on18-inch, split-five-spoke wheels combined with a higher-performance brake upgrade kit with Wilwood front calipers.

Click past the jump to read more about the standard Chevrolet Sonic.

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2014 Chevrolet Sonic RS

2014 Chevrolet Sonic RS

The Sonic RS is the new performance flagship for Chevrolet’s mini-car line. Unlike the lower-range Sonics that come in sedan or hatchback bodies, the new Sonic RS is available only with five doors and comes loaded with special equipment that makes the car stand out among the crowd.

Is it any quicker than a Sonic LTZ Turbo? No, it is not. The RS upgrade is more focused on style and driving enjoyment than outright speed, via noticeable exterior, interior and mechanical changes aimed at making this the ideal Sonic for car enthusiasts. Special gear ratios launch the car slightly more rapidly but aren’t enough to move the stats into the low 7’s for 0-to-60 MPH sprints.

Style-wise, things get a lot better with an RS-specific nose, a deeper air dam, chrome-trimmed fog lamp shrouds, sill extensions and a re-profiled rear end with larger spoiler and a big exhaust tip.

The exterior changes dramatically increase the RS model’s road presence versus lesser Sonics. Unfortunately, the bump in price means new competitors materialize that are even more fun and much quicker. The Mini Cooper S and Fiat 500 Abarth both sprint to 60 mph more than a second quicker than the Sonic RS.

The Chevrolet Sonic RS brings a few other tricks to the party and finds a sweet spot in the market by undercutting the more-powerful Fiesta ST and Kia Forte5 Turbo on price.

Click past the jump for the full review of the Chevrolet Sonic RS.

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2014 Chevrolet Sonic

2014 Chevrolet Sonic

The Chevy Sonic gets so little coverage from car magazines that it is easy to forget it even exists. Even the Chevrolet team does not seem too excited about the subcompact’s prospects with American buyers. Maybe that is why most of the official images are just renderings of the car inserted into picturesque backdrops via Photoshop…

If Chevrolet can’t be bothered to actually take its mini car to the desert for a photo shoot, why should buyers care?

There are a few reasons that the Chevrolet Sonic is storming up the sales charts recently to become the top-selling supermini in the U.S. for the last few months. Offered in five-door hatchback or four-door sedan body styles, the Sonic line is well-positioned in style, price and interior tech to overcome rivals, like the Hyundai Accent, Kia Rio and Ford Fiesta.

A new-for-2013 RS trim added lower gear ratios to help improve acceleration in the top 1.4-liter turbo engine guise. While relatively exciting versus the bread-and-butter LS, LT and LTZ trims, the 2014 RS deserves a review of its own – published in the near future so check back for more details.

The focus here is on the volume model sedan and hatchback Chevrolet Sonics with highlights of the new-for-2014 features and options.

Click past the jump for the full review of the 2014 Chevrolet Sonic.

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Chevrolet Sonic RS Rally Car Joins "Transformers 4" Cast

Chevrolet Sonic RS Rally Car Joins "Transformers 4" Cast

For all of the supercars and exotics that have appeared throughout the “Transformers” movie franchise, director Michael Bay has also tossed a little love in the direction of compact vehicles.

Remember the Twins in their Chevrolet Sparks from “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen?”

For the fourth movie, Bay is bringing back some hot hatch love with the introduction of the Chevrolet Sonic RS as part of the new cast of cars for “Transformers 4.”

It might seem odd that the Sonic RS is joining a list that includes a Bugatti Veyron, a Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, a Lamborghini Aventador and a fully customized 1967 Chevrolet Camaro SS.

But don’t sleep on the Sonic RS, because even though it doesn’t look anywhere near a supercar, it still has some attitude and its racing livery also shows its capabilities rubbing tires in full-fledged competition.

Maybe that’s why Michael Bay felt the Sonic RS had to be part of the “Transformers 4” cast. What it lacks in power and price tag, it more than makes up for in edginess.

Click past the jump to read about the Chevrolet Sonic RS

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Video: The Chevrolet Sonic is NOT a Skateboard

Despite what some people may think, the Chevrolet Sonic is not anything else other than a car. It’s not a rocket ship. It’s not a boat. And as this pretty funny commercial featuring rapper Theophilus London will try to make you believe, it’s also not a skateboard.

But even with all these disclaimers, it’s not hard to find some humor in the ad, as London tries to scramble going to the market to get some milk. We seriously doubt that the Sonic was actually able to perform all those stunts, but even with the help of CGI, the ad plays to the disclaimer quite beautifully.

Let’s just hope that nobody sees this and decides to perform those stunts, too. Not that would be really problematic.

Check out the ad by watching the video above. It’s a pretty cool reminder of what a smart little hatchback can perform if you let your imaginations run wild.

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Video: Chevrolet Presents its New Lineup in Creative Fashion

Video: Chevrolet Presents its New Lineup in Creative Fashion

Chevy revealed a very cool commercial that highlights the coolest models it has unveiled in the past few months, including the Sonic, Spark, Impala, Corvette Stingray and Volt. There’s no need to tell you, but from all these models the new Stingray is our favorite, but the 2014 Impala is also pretty sexy model too.

The idea behind this commercial is that Chevy is offering a model for anyone out there; you just need to dare go and find the one that suits you best. What we cannot understand is what the heck the robo-dog is doing in there. Then again, much like blue jean commercials, car commercial don’t make sense, so who knows!

Chevrolet’s motto for the new commercial is also pretty direct: "With the best lineup of vehicles ever, we believe ingenuity can do the impossible. So why just go from A to B when imagination can take you everywhere?"

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2013 Chevrolet Sonic Street Edition

2013 Chevrolet Sonic Street Edition

There should be no doubt in anyone’s mind that the despite a majority of Japanese automakers in its fold, the Tokyo Auto Salon is fast becoming a global event, so much so, that an auto brand like Chevrolet is heading over to Japan to introduce a bevy of new concepts.

One of these concepts is called the Chevrolet Sonic Street Edition, a unique trim of the company’s popular subcompact hatchback that we expect to hit the Japanese market in the coming months.

Among the many distinguishable characteristics of the Sonic Street Edition, few can come close to the new aero kit fitted into the car from 3D Carbon. On top of that, the Sonic Street Edition will also receive some fancy matte black bonnet brides, as well as a height-adjustable sports suspension, and a set of 18-inch Gianna Blitz black rims with red inserts.

That’s about all the information Chevrolet has released for the Sonic Street Edition. Rest assured, we’ll know more about the program when Chevy brings the vehicles to the 2013 Tokyo Auto Salon.

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2013 Chevrolet Sonic Dusk

2013 Chevrolet Sonic Dusk

At the 2011 SEMA Show, Chevrolet unveiled the Sonic Dusk Concept and it was rather well received. Because of the positive reaction, GM decided to offer a production version Sonic Dusk and it announced said model at the 2012 SEMA Show.

The new Sonic Dusk is painted Ashen Grey, which is contrasted by matte-finished upper and lower grilles, door handle inserts, and rear license plate frame. Adding a little class to the Sonic Dusk’s exterior are stainless steel lower window moldings. The car sits on a new set of 18-inch aluminum wheels with a Pearl Nickel finish.

On the inside, the new Dusk edition includes Jet Black, leather-trimmed seats with suede accents and Mojave tan inserts. As standard equipment, the Sonic Dusk offers Chevrolet’s MyLink infotainment system, which integrates a smartphone and stored media – via Bluetooth, plug-in outlet or USB – with the radio.

Under the hood, Chevrolet has placed an Ecotec 1.4 liter turbocharged engine that delivers a total of 138 horsepower and 148 foot-pounds of torque delivered between 1,850 rpm and 4,900 rpm. The engine is mated to a six-speed manual or automatic transmission.

Click past the jump to read GM’s press release

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2013 Chevrolet Sonic B-Spec Racer Concept

2013 Chevrolet Sonic B-Spec Racer Concept

Lack of power notwithstanding, it’s damn near close to impossible to not like the Chevrolet Sonic.

As one of Chevrolet’s more popular models, the Sonic has received acclaim for its balanced handling and sporty driving experience, so much so, in fact, that the Bow Tie has jumped right into the increasingly popular B-Spec racing series with their very own Sonic B-Spec Race Car Concept.

Although still a preview of a competition kit for the race car, the Sonic B-Spec Racer is a bonafide pocket Hercules.

Dressed in a Luxor Blue paint finish with matching Monaco Blue graphics, the lightweight Sonic B-Spec Racer comes with a bevy of race spec modifications, particularly on the car’s chassis and suspension. The transformation from production model to full-fledged race car begins with the installation of front strut coil-over assemblies and mounts and rear shock coil-over assemblies and mounts. The car also received adjustable front stabilizer bar links, a rear axle shim kit, an inlet air restrictor, and a recalibrated ECM and EBCM.

Safety features were also added, including a carbon fiber safety seat, a window safety net, five-point racing harnesses, a Monaco Blue-painted roll cage, a center catch net, a quick-release steering wheel/hub system, and a fire extinguisher.

About the only thing disappointing about the Sonic B-Spec Racer Concept, albeit one that’s completely understandable, is the engine. To adhere to regulations, the Sonic Race Car Concept’s 1.8-liter engine remains the same from its stock specifications, although an air restrictor was used to equalize its output with other competitors.

In the end, this little beast is still pretty impressive, something GM US VP of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports Jim Campbell will attest to. “[The] Sonic B-Spec Concept demonstrates the car’s capabilities in the increasingly popular B-Spec subcompact classes in SCCA and Grand Am series,” he said.

“The Sonic’s great balance of power and responsive handling make it a natural on the track – and a formidable competitor.”

Expect the Sonic B-Spec competition kit to hit the sales market in the first quarter of 2013 through Chevrolet Performance retailers.

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2012 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec 1 Concept

2012 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec 1 Concept

If the Z-Spec 2.5 Concept is a little too much, then you’ll be happy to know that Chevrolet has another Sonic-based concept prepared for the 2012 SEMA Auto Show: the Sonic Z-Spec 1 Concept. This latest concept combines the Z-Spec’s exterior look with a more capable driving experience.

The Z-Spec 1 Concept is painted in a custom Synergy Green color combined with an Ashen Grey Sonic RS rear spoiler and Z-Spec stripe, as well as logos and Piano Black mesh-style upper and lower grilles with Ashen Grey surrounds. The final piece of the exterior is a new set of 18" wheels in a split-spoke design with Synergy Green inserts.

To improve the driving experience, Chevrolet has lowered the ride height with a Chevrolet Performance concept suspension kit, including lowering sprints, performance dampers, and a new concept brake kit featuring four-piston front disc brake calipers with 16-inch rotors. A new Borla exhaust system enhances the sound of the engine.

For the interior, Chevrolet combined Jet Black and Titanium with Chevrolet Accessories stainless steel pedal covers and sill plates. The concept also received some cool technologies like a MyLink color touch screen and Sub and Amp Kit, with a KICKER 200-watt DSP amp and a 200-watt powered subwoofer.

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2012 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec 2.5 Concept

2012 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec 2.5 Concept

Let’s be fair, when someone buys a Chevrolet Sonic, they do it because they want a small car for their family, not because they want to update its looks at some point with some crazy tuning packages. That being said, the Sonic will still be well-represented at the 2012 SEMA Auto Show, allowing Chevrolet to prove to all of us that even a small car like the Sonic has an infinite number of personalizing possibilities.

One of these possibilities is the Z-Spec 2.5 Concept, which displays a number of parts from Chevrolet Performance and GM Accessories. The concept is painted in a very cool Abalone White Tricoat exterior paint combined with Z-Spec graphics and a very cool set of 18" wheels in Galvano Silver with Signal Red edges. The same Galvano Silver paint was used for the grille surround, fog lamp bezels, and door trims. The exterior updates continue with a very cool aerodynamic package, lower fascia extensions, and a rear spoiler. The company’s attention to detail is prevalent in the tinted windows and fog lamps, which combined with the other exterior add-ons, make the little Sonic almost unrecognizable.

The concept’s interior combines a Jet Black leather trim with Orange Crust leather inserts and orange accent stitching. There is also a leather-wrapped steering wheel, stainless steel pedal covers, and a very cool MyLink color touch screen. Chevrolet also threw in a Sub and Amp Kit with a KICKER 200-watt DSP amp and a 200-watt powered subwoofer for good measure.

To make the Sonic look mean with its small stature, the company lowered its ride using aChevrolet Performance concept suspension kit with lowering sprints and performance dampers. We’re not sure if the concept is now more powerful than the standard model, but we do know it has also received a cold-air intake kit and a Borla exhaust system.

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2012 Chevy Aveo Diesel gets extreme MPG, but what about the U.S.?

We all understand that the European market was the first to really get nailed with high gas prices. They were paying over $5 per gallon while the U.S. market still was just cresting the $2 per gallon mark. This forced the European market to start accepting smaller and less desirable vehicles in hopes of getting better economy, while folks in the States continued to drive Hummers and other large SUVs.

Now that gas is hitting $4 per gallon, the U.S. buyers are starting to become more receptive to smaller cars with upwards of 40 mpg capabilities and hybrids cresting the 50 mpg mark. However, we are still left out in one market, the ultra economic clean diesels. The latest one is the 2012 Chevrolet Aveo, which is known as the Sonic in the U.S.

In the U.S., the highest mpg available on the Sonic is 40 mpg and that is the optional 1.4-liter turbocharged engine, which we have our doubts if any normal driver can actually hit 40 mpg in this car. In the U.K., the Aveo has several four-cylinder engine options, including a 1.2-liter gasoline, 1.3-liter diesel, 1.3-liter Eco Diesel, and a 1.4-liter. The highway fuel economy on these engines is 68.9 mpg, 83.1 mpg, 85.6 mpg, and 62.7 mpg, respectively.

None of these engines would make the Sonic a speed demon, like the relatively quick Sonic LTZ and its 1.4-liter turbo engine, but will Chevy ever bring these engine options to the U.S. market? We understand that diesel fuel is not as readily available as regular gasoline, but they certainly give the U.S. buyer an option other than hybrid or electric, which have technologies that could end up requiring rather pricy repairs in the future.

We’re not singling out Chevy here, as Ford has its ECOnetic system getting 65+ mpg in a Ford Fiesta. Our best Fiesta gets an arguable 40 mpg on the highway. Seemingly every car company has a super-Eco diesel engine in its European lineup, but we have yet to see one in the U.S. We think the time has come for one to show up.

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Chevy Makes it Nearly Impossible to Get Lost with the Gogolink Smartphone

Every single year cars continue to get closer and closer to being completely autonomous, but that’s still a distant goal. In today’s world, automakers are simply trying to make getting lost a thing of the past with new integrated navigation systems. Chevy has taken this a step further by announcing that it is planning to release a new type of navigation system in the fall of 2012.

Chevy has dubbed this new system GogoLink and will debut it at the 2012 New York Auto Show. What’s weirder than the name itself is that it is a smartphone application. Yup, this application loads into any smartphone and offers a fully functional navigation system with live traffic updates. This system works through the MyLink infotainment system installed in the upcoming 2013 Sonic and 2012 Spark via Bluetooth or cable connection, and displays the navigation system on MyLink’s 7-inch LCD touch screen.

But why on Earth would Chevy put a smartphone app as its navigation system? Well, Chevy claims that 90% of Sonic and Spark buyers own a smartphone and that these higher-end customers are accustomed to using their phones for everything. We honestly think it is a cheap way for Chevy to say “Even our entry level cars have navigation systems,” but we’re skeptics.

Due to the fact that GogoLink will likely not debut in time for the release of the 2012 Spark, Chevy dealers will quickly upload GogoLink onto the MyLink system on your new Spark once it becomes available. For now, we’ll reserve judgment until more details come about, but we can certainly see a large number of Spark and Sonic customers complaining because they used up their entire smartphone data plan running GogoLink (See iPhone billing nightmares). However, if you happen to have an unlimited data plan, which we would assume most smartphone users would, this could be a pretty cool system to help get you around town.

Click past the jump to read the full press release and list of features.

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2012 Chevrolet Sonic: GM Announces its new Six-Speed Auto Transmission

2012 Chevrolet Sonic: GM Announces its new Six-Speed Auto Transmission

In the modern era of automobiles, most customers want to have their cake and eat it too, meaning they not only want great fuel economy and a low price, but they also want a well-performing vehicle. Enter the 2012 Chevrolet Sonic with a 1.8-liter four cylinder engine that gets a respectable 25 to 26 mpg in the city and 35 mpg on the highway. This is all well and good, but what about those looking for more miles per gallon.

Greater miles per gallon is the exact purpose for Chevy offering an optional 1.4-liter engine. Instinctively, you may assume that this more fuel efficient 1.4-liter engine may require a sacrifice of power, but GM bolted a turbocharger onto this Ecotec engine, boosting it to the same 138 horsepower as the 1.8-liter. It also produces 23 more pound-feet of torque than the larger 1.8-liter engine. In addition to its added torque, this boosted 1.4-liter gets 33 mpg in the city and 40 mpg on the highway, and zips the Sonic from 0 to 60 mph in just 7.8 seconds – we’re not talking a Ferrari, but that’s still impressive.

Unfortunately, for those that desired an automatic transmission, the turbo 1.4-liter engine was not an option, as it was only available with a six-speed manual transmission. Well, GM decided to answer the demand for an auto-equipped Sonic turbo, as the auto giant announced that it will now offer an optional six-speed automatic transmission on the 2012 Sonic Turbo. This new turbocharged, automatic-equipped 2012 Sonic will accelerate to 60 mph in eight seconds, per GM, which is significantly faster than its closest competitors, which include the Ford Fiesta, Honda Fit, and Hyundai Accent.

On top of the impressive acceleration time, the auto equipped Sonic turbo will get you 27 mpg in the city and 37 mpg on the highway. All of these features combined, plus the 2012 Sonic’s modern and stylish exterior, make us wonder why you are still reading this and not picking one up now… Or are we talking to ourselves here?

Click below to read the official press release from GM.

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Super Bowl Ad: Bugs love the Chevrolet Sonic!

Chevrolet’s Super Bowl ad for the Volt was a little weird - and that’s putting it lightly.

But they certainly made up for it with this cute and funny ad for the Sonic, featuring bugs and insects of all kinds. Taking a stab at all those times when insects get wiped out by grilles, headlights, and wiper blades, Chevrolet decided to address this ad and put a creative spin on it: insects actually having some fun while riding a car.

Even one insect - we actually don’t know what it is - even gets slammed into the grille and bellows out a joyful scream like he had just ridden an intense roller coaster!

If insects were an actual market segment in the industry, this commercial will certainly shoot up sales in that demographic. But even if they aren’t, it’s still a pretty funny ad that will make you chuckle some.

And considering some of the ads that we’ve seen during the Game, chuckles have been hard to come by. That in itself is a victory for Chevrolet.

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Super Bowl Ad: The Chevrolet Sonic has already done stunts we can only dream of doing

Most of us spend a lifetime trying to do some of the most breathtaking activities in this world. The Chevrolet Sonic managed to do all of those things in a span of a minute.

Editing notwithstanding, Chevrolet’s new Super Bowl commercial for the Sonic reads like a bucket list for a lot of people. There’s the sight of the Sonic doing a kick flip skateboard trick with Rob Dyrdek. The Sonic also went bungee jumping, sky diving, and yes, even star in a music video with OK GO. The only thing it didn’t do was get strapped into a spaceship and fly - literally - out of this world, which it probably could’ve done if Chevy had a bigger budget for this ad.

The whole idea behind this ad is to live life with no limits, something the Sonic exudes in its tiny compact frame.

It doesn’t come with the comedy of Audi and Hyundai, although when you look at the inspiration scale, Chevy’s Super Bowl commercial for the Sonic is right at the top of that.

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2012 Detroit Auto Show Preview

2012 Detroit Auto Show Preview

With the calendar turning over a new page to 2012, the very first major auto show is set to open its doors in Detroit when the North American International Auto Show welcomes automakers - both local and foreign - to the Motor City.

This year, American brands are coming to Detroit in full force where they will be joined by a number of international automakers in presenting a steady diet of concept cars, production debuts, and just about everything else in between.

Among the notable debuts set to take place include the brand-new 2013 Mercedes-Benz SL, as well as the 2013 Bentley Continental GT V8. German automaker Porsche has also penciled in the 911 Cabriolet for the festivities, while Lexus will be on-hand to display the intriguing and mysterious LF-LC 2+2 sports coupe concept.

As for the local contingent, Ford is leading the way with the premiere of the Fusion global mid-size sedan while Dodge is set to introduce their Alfa Romeo Giulietta-based compact sedan, the Dart.

There’s plenty of action headed to Detroit when the 2012 NAIAS opens its doors on January 14th. Head over after the jump to check out a preview of all the cars scheduled to be part of all the festivities.

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2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS

2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS

The Chevrolet Sonic is fixing to get hotter with the announcement of a new offspring to the Sonic line: the 2013 Sonic RS.

The car is scheduled to make its public debut at the 2012 North American International Auto Show this coming January and it exemplifies the kind of attitude that attracts the stylish and youthful market of today’s hip-and-happening generation.

The new Sonic RS comes plush with exterior and interior enhancements that result in a sportier and more aggressive profile exuding an edginess that young consumers look for in a car.

In addition to that, the Sonic RS also makes use of the Sonic line’s turbocharged power train, continuing the model’s claim of being the only car in its segment to offer a turbocharged engine.

There’s plenty to like about the Chevrolet Sonic RS, a lot of which has to do with the enhanced looks on both the exterior and the interior. Keep up to date to see what Chevrolet has in store for the car leading up to its debut in Detroit in a month’s time.

UPDATE 08/22/12: Chevrolet has released the price details for the Sonic RS. The base price is a lot higher than what we expected so prepare to be taken aback - at the very least.

For now, you can find out more details about the Sonic RS after the jump.

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2012 Chevrolet Sonic Boom Concept

2012 Chevrolet Sonic Boom Concept

The full-on Chevrolet Sonic SEMA onslaught figures to go full-steam ahead with the introduction of more models that have been customized to high heavens by the boys at Chevy. One new piece is the Sonic Boom Concept, a car that Chevy cranked up with a sound system-based concept, delivering the kind of boom-tastic thrills for audiophiles the world over.

In setting up the concept audio system on the Sonic Boom, Chevrolet and KICKER Audio drew inspiration from the design of jet engines, emulating their style in the shape and positioning of the components. A high-tech head unit controls the system, which features a pair of 15-inch Comp VX subwoofers, 12 six-inch QS Component speakers and tweeters, six QS Component speakers and tweeters, two IX1000.1 Mono subwoofer amps, four IX500.4 four-channel mid and high amps, and a ZXSUM8 summing interface signal processor. The whole setup is completed to deliver a total sound output of 4,000 watts.

To keep the Sonic’s interior as fresh as can be, Chevy also added a bevy interior modifications, including custom-fabricated rear speaker enclosures and custom load floor, perforated black suede seat inserts, liquid metal trim pieces, a Jet Black leather-wrapped instrument panel with distressed leather inserts and red piping, and a Jet Black leather-wrapped flat-bottom steering wheel with distressed leather and red stitching.

As for the exterior, Chevrolet dressed up the Sonic with an anodized Sonic Boom Red exterior color with custom body graphics, window tint graphics, tinted front headlamps with Boom logo, a Concept Z-Spec grille, a Concept Z-Spec spoiler, and a new set of 19" wheels.

UPDATE 11/08/2011: We have added new images from the 2011 SEMA Auto Show. Check them out in the picture gallery provided!

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2012 Chevrolet Sonic Rocky Carmichael Concept

2012 Chevrolet Sonic Rocky Carmichael Concept

The Chevrolet Sonic has a new BFF. His name is Ricky Carmichael and you probably know him as a 15-time American Motorcycle Association (AMA) champion and a three-time X-Games gold medalist.

Recently, Carmichael was tapped by Chevrolet to help design a special edition Sonic for the 2011 SEMA Auto Show. The result between the two-party collaboration is the Sonic All Activity Vehicle - Ricky Carmichael Concept, a car that comes fully equipped with everything for all the adventure-seeking individuals out there.

Known for being a thrill nut, Carmichael wanted a concept that would highlight elements of an activity-focused hatch. Together with Chevrolet, he designed the Sonic to carry a slew of exterior highlights that fit right into his wheelhouse, including a Blue Pearlized Satin Black exterior, a THULE Roof Rack with an S-Works mountain bike and Hyperlite wakeboard with custom graphics, a Number 4 hood decal, an Electric Green signature on the lower rear doors, new splash guards, concept Z-Spec ground effects, Z-Spec grille and Z-Spec spoiler, and a new set of custom 18" wheels with a gloss black finish with green lips.

Meanwhile, the interior of the Sonic also carries plenty of Carmichael-inspired elements. There’s a Dark Green/Jet Black leather-trimmed instrument panel and door trim with Lime Green piping and stitching. The seat inserts carry FOX Racing boardshorts material while the trim accents are dressed in satin chrome. Likewise, there’s also a concept billet aluminum shifter knob, all-weather floor mats, a rear cargo organizer, a concept sound system, and the man’s own signature with Number 4 on driver and front passenger seats, making for a totally unique interior look.

The Sonic All Activity Vehicle – Ricky Carmichael Concept reflects the decorate driver’s high-performance personality. No wonder Chevy asked him to work on the car.

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2012 Chevrolet Sonic Tjin Edition

2012 Chevrolet Sonic Tjin Edition

The Chevrolet Sonic is fast becoming a tuning favorite as you can see from how many aftermarket iterations of the car headed to the 2011 SEMA Auto Show.

The latest to show their modded Sonic is Tjin Edition, which did a complete nip and tuck of the sedan version of the Sonic. The design of the car comes from Tjin Edition with some extra help from LR Autobody and Unique Fabrication. The former handled the paint work for the Sonic sedan while the latter was responsible for building the custom roll cage, as well as the car’s over-all build.

As far as all the added elements on the Sonic are concerned, Tjin Edition took the task of building it using, among other things, carbon fiber panels from DownForce, a new suspension kit from Pedders, an intercooler kit from Vibrant Performance/Unique Fabrication, a Magnaflow exhaust, custom LED headlights from Light WurkZ, GlowShift gauges, and a set of Forgestar wheels wrapped in Falken tires.

UPDATE 11/08/2011: We have added new images of the Chevrolet Sonic Tjin Edition from its official debut at the 2011 SEMA Auto Show. Check them out in the picture gallery.

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2012 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec 4D Concept

2012 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec 4D Concept

Don’t mistake the Chevrolet Sonic for a wimp of a car because clearly, it’s got something to offer as far as the tuning market is concerned. The car is one of those that are considered aftermarket favorites and proof of that is Chevrolet’s intention of bringing a slew of modded Sonics to the 2011 SEMA Auto Show.

Arguably the most interesting of the four SEMA-bound Sonic models is the Z-Spec 4D Concept, a car that not only carries Chevy’s own Z-Spec package, but also a bevy of other upgrades. Aesthetically, the car has been dressed in an Ashen Grey Mettalic finish, complete with a refreshed grille, a rear spoiler, "Chevrolet" graphics, and a set of new 18" Z-Spec Concept wheels. Inside, the elaborate improvements continue with a re-trimmed interior that features a Dark Titanium finish with matching Cobalt Red accents, a Z-Spec sport pedal kit, an aluminum sport shift knob, and a dressed up flat-bottom steering wheel with a Cobalt Red suede trim.

Under its hood, the Sonic Z-Spec 4D Concept will carry performance modifications on its 1.4-liter turbocharged inline 4-cylinder engine, as well as a new suspension, brakes, and exhaust system. The standard model’s output is 138 horsepower, but you can expect that to increase with these mods.

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2012 Chevrolet Sonic Dusk

2012 Chevrolet Sonic Dusk

Of all the Chevrolet Sonic models General Motors is bringing to the 2011 SEMA Auto Show, the Chevy Sonic Dusk is arguably the most subtle concept of the bunch.

Despite being described as such, the Sonic Dusk still comes with a boatload of new features, highlighted by a cool new Berlin Blue exterior. The custom Sonic has a new ground effects package, a fresh new grille, blue-tinted lights, and a new set of 18" dark Galvano Silver wheels.

Inside, the Sonic Dusk also gets its fair share of improvements, including a Mojave leather interior with custom seat inserts, a Z-Spec shift knob with a satin chrome trim, a suede-trimmed, flat-bottom steering wheel, a custom audio system, Z-Spec sport pedals, and an accessory interior trim kit.

Unlike the Sonic #1 and the Sonic #2, the Sonic Dusk is being kept under wraps until the 2011 SEMA Auto Show opens in a few days.

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2011 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec #2

2011 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec #2

The second Z-Spec concept to be displayed at the 2011 SEMA Auto Show is the Sonic Z-Spec #2. The concept is painted in Flat White with Torch Red accents to give it a bit of life. Joining the new exterior paint job is a range of accessories from Z-Spec - the company’s line of performance, styling, and personalization accessories.

The Chevrolet Sonic is built on the Sonic Z-Spec Concept revealed at the beginning of 2011. It features a more aggressive ground effects package, a unique grille, a rear spoiler, and a graphics package.

The Sonic Z-Spec #2 sits on a new set of 18" wheels and features a re-trimmed interior with Z-Spec sports pedal kit, a Z-Spec sport shift knob, and a flat-bottom steering wheel. It also features custom racing seats with the Z-Spec logo.

The concept was offered with a 1.4 liter turbo engine and a six-speed manual transmission. Performance upgrades for the Z-Spec #2 include brakes with four-piston calipers, a high-flow exhaust system, and new suspension parts. Nothing has been said about the new figures for the Z-Spec #2, but we should have more details soon.

"The Sonic and Cruze concepts demonstrate that performance comes in all shapes, sizes and displacements at Chevrolet."

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2011 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec #1

2011 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec #1

Chevrolet’s presence at this year’s SEMA Show is just further proof that small cars can be fun, especially when outfitted with a range of accessories from Z-Spec - the company’s line of performance, styling, and personalization accessories.

The first concept - the Sonic Z-Spec #1 - is based on a turbocharged five-door Sonic. The concept is finished in a special Torch Red exterior finish with a set of 18-inch wheels to top it off. The exterior package also includes a Z-Spec spoiler, a unique grille, and a graphics package.

The interior of the Sonic Z-Spec brings in more dynamic red with a Cobalt Red cabin with custom trim, and perforated black suede seat inserts to compliment it. Other features include a Z-Spec sport pedal kit, sport shift knob, and a racing-style flat-bottom steering wheel. Additional upgrades include performance brakes with four-piston calipers, a new high-flow exhaust system, and performance suspension parts.

"The heritage of Chevrolet cars like the Corvette and Camaro is being expressed in smaller packages for the next generation," said Chris Perry, vice president, global marketing and strategy for Chevrolet. ’The Sonic and Cruze concepts demonstrate that performance comes in all shapes, sizes and displacements at Chevrolet."

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2012 Chevrolet Sonic Super 4 Concept

2012 Chevrolet Sonic Super 4 Concept

Any car, with the right team behind it, can be turned into a full-fledged racer. Yes, even if the car is Chevrolet’s little Sonic hatchback.

The Chevy team behind this piece of work - it’s called the Sonic Super 4 Concept - wanted to prove that even the Sonic’s sporty driving character could be translated and transferred into one that can pound asphalt on the tracks.

Mission accomplished, to say the least.

The reinforced body structure of the Sonic contributes to a dynamic driving experience. The suspension system features a Macpherson strut front suspension with coil springs, a stabilizer bar, and side-load-compensated front strut modules. The whole set-up was modified for racing while also receiving a lower restriction intake and exhaust system, enhancing the hatchback’s on-track performance.

Aerodynamic enhancements were also in the offing for the Super 4 Concept. Among the items added include a lower splitter, rocker panel extensions, and rear diffuser, all of which were made from carbon fiber. The car was also dressed in Chevrolet racing graphics and also carries tinted headlamps and taillights, a Concept Z-Spec high wing rear spoiler, and a new set of 18" satin black wheels wrapped in racing tires.

Inside, Chevrolet did away with most of the standard features of the road-going Sonic and modified it to a full-on race set-up featuring a full chrome molly roll cage, window nets, racing instrumentation, a fire suppression and rearview camera system, an easily-detachable racing wheel, a racing seat with a five-point harness, and a Z-Spec pedal kit.

The Sonic Super 4 Concept is powered by a 1.4-liter Ecotec turbo engine mated to a six-speed manual transmission with an adjustable coil-over struts and spring kit, a low-restriction air intake and filter, and a two-inch cat-back straight-pipe exhaust.

UPDATE 11/08/2011: We have added new images of the Chevrolet Sonic Super 4 Concept from its official debut at the 2011 SEMA Auto Show. Check them out in the picture gallery.

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Woodward Dream Cruise 2011 ready to hit the road

Woodward Dream Cruise 2011 ready to hit the road

Anybody that has ever had an appreciation of classic cars knows that the annual Woodward Dream Cruise is one of the can’t-miss events of the calendar year.

Held annually at Michigan’s legendary Woodward Avenue, the world’s largest classic car cruise is shaping up to have another memorable 2011 staging, complete with over 30,000 classic vehicles and an attendance that’s expected to reach well over 1.5 million people.

This year, the Chevrolet-sponsored event will be held on August 20th when you’ll see some of your favorite cars in history. An event like this brings out all types of cars from different generations. You name it, it’s there: from hot rods, classic cars, muscle cars, rat rods, art cars, TV cars, and everything else in between. In fact, at least one of every type of Mustang model made since the car debuted in April 1964 will be in attendance, as well as the Shelby GT500, both street and racing versions of the Boss 302, and the Mustang GT and V6 Coupe with performance package. Getting back to the main sponsor, Chevrolet, the Detroit-based company is bringing many cars from their past, present, and future, including the Cruze, Camaro, Corvette, Volt, Sonic, and ZL1 Camaro.

If you happen to be in the area this weekend, you’ll get a first-hand look at some of those classic rides that you’ll have the chance to check off of your bucket list. But if you’re not within the vicinity, you can still keep up-to-date with the latest happenings courtesy of the event’s official radio station, 104.3 WOMC. Head over to the WOMC website and find out everything you need to know about the Woodward Dream Cruise 2011.

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GM Begins Building Chevy Sonics

GM Begins Building Chevy Sonics

GM has started building the subcompact Chevy Sonic at their Orion Hills, MI plant. The upcoming Chevrolet Sonic may be small in size, but the automaker has huge plans for the subcompact car, which replaces the forgettable Korean-built Chevy Aveo in its lineup. Chevy has gone to great lengths to promote the Sonic, despite the fact that it won’t hit dealer showrooms until sometime this fall.

Like the Aveo, the Sonic was developed in South Korea; unlike the Aveo, the Sonic will be built in the United States. GM is quick to point out that the Sonic is the only subcompact from a domestic manufacturer built in this country. If you count the Fiat 500 as being from Chrysler, it’s built at their plant in Toluca, Mexico. Ford’s Fiesta also comes from south of the border, and is assembled at the Ford plant in Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico.

The Sonic began production at Chevy’s Orion Township, MI plant today, justifying some $500 million in upgrades that GM has spent on the facility, which also builds the Buick Verano. At launch, Chevy will offer the Sonic at a base price of $14,495, which makes it slightly more expensive than a base Ford Fiesta. Opt for the 1.4-liter turbo engine, and the price goes up by $700. If you want the range-topping LTZ version in hatchback form, that price starts at $17,235.

Chevy has alluded to the Sonic’s handling, referencing its direct DNA link to the Chevrolet Corvette. We’re struggling to make the connection between a front-engine, front-drive subcompact and one of America’s premier sports cars, but we’ll give Chevy some latitude, at least until we have a chance to drive the Sonic.

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2012 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec

2012 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec

After seeing the Sonic Z-Spec Concept at the Detroit Auto Show, we didn’t think it would take too long before Chevrolet revealed the first details on the production version of the car. Now we have them as the production Sonic Z-Spec will be revealed at the 2011 New York Auto Show next week.

The production version will include body-color ground effects (with a silver exhaust tip), contrasting mirror caps and roof spoiler, contrasting upper and lower grille surrounds, and a body graphics package. Additionally, the customer will get a more unique look for their special edition hatchback with a front fascia extension, rocker panel extensions, rear fascia extension, and silver exhaust tip. The interior is left widely untouched with only new aluminum sport pedals and sill plates. The vehicle will be completed with a new set of painted wheels offered in size 16" or 17".

Customers will have to choose from two different color accent packages - "Black Out" or "White Out" - that feature black accents on the Summit White Sonic exterior paint and Summit White accents on the Inferno Orange Sonic.

The 2012 Sonic will carry a 1.8L DOHC inline 4-cylinder unit delivering 135 HP and 125 lb-ft of torque, but customers can also upgrade to an optional 138 HP 1.4L turbocharged inline 4-cylinder. We imagine the Z-Spec package will come with these same engine options.

"The new Z-Spec accessories reinforce Sonic’s fun, youthful spirit," said Rick Scheidt, vice president, Chevrolet marketing. "Customization is particularly important with the customers we believe will gravitate toward the Sonic, and we want to help them make their vehicle look exactly the way they want as easily as possible."

The Sonic Z-Spec package will be available in parts form or as a full package. Prices will be revealed closer to the launch date, but don’t stress too much about the additional up front costs; GM is allowing customers to roll the parts prices into their monthly payment.

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2012 Chevrolet Sonic

2012 Chevrolet Sonic

Chevrolet is officially removing the Aveo nameplate on their B-segment car and will be re-christening it the ‘Sonic’. If you recall, the 2011 Aveo first made its appearance at the Paris Motor Show a few months ago bearing the ‘Aveo’ name. But according to Chevrolet, models that are going to be sold in North America and Mexico will now be called Sonic whereas the Aveo name will be retained in other parts of the world.

In a press release, Chris Perry, Chevrolet’s vice president of US marketing, said, “The Sonic represents a new beginning for Chevrolet in the small car segment and so we felt it was time to give it a new name."

"The new car is roomy, stylish and fun to drive, and Sonic is a youthful, energetic name that helps convey what this vehicle is about."

Hit the jump to read more on the 2012 Chevrolet Sonic.

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2012 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec Concept

2012 Chevrolet Sonic Z-Spec Concept

Chevrolet first used the Z-Spec name at the 2010 SEMA Show where they revealed the Volt Z-Spec, the Spark Z-Spec, and the Cruze Z-Spec. Continuing their use of the name at the Detroit Auto Show comes the new Sonic Z-Spec Concept. Not many details have been revealed on the concept as of yet, but Chevrolet has confirmed that it showcases a family of factory-engineered accessories and the best of the aftermarket under a single design theme.

The concept’s exterior is distinguished by a massive rear-deck spoiler, an orange paint scheme, and eighteen-inch multi-spoke BBS wheels. The interior is also defined by the same orange color scheme, as well as new Recaro seats covered in tan leather. Other minor adjustments for the inside include a billet shift knob and flat-bottom steering wheel cap.

The powertrain for the concept is still being kept under wraps, but we expect it to carry the same 1.4L turbo engine with maybe some tweaks here and there. We do know that Chevrolet has added a new K&N filter and Borla exhaust to help bump up whatever output the concept is delivering.

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