A Chevrolet Spark test mule was caught with a fully camouflaged tailgate hiding the rear badges. We believe the camouflaged car was the 800 cc version of the Spark that may be launched in September 2012.
The 800 cc Spark makes a lot of sense in the present scenario where high fuel efficiency and competitive pricing have become mandatory for a small car’s success in the Indian car market. By launching the 800 cc engine, the Spark can be expected to give better mileage than the current model which has an ARAI-certified mileage of 18.29 kmpl. The Spark 800 cc can also be priced cheaper than the Spark 1.0 (Rs. 3.14 lakh – Rs. 3.97 lakh), and compete more effectively with the Maruti Suzuki Alto.
The Spark doesn’t sell in large numbers like its rivals; the Alto and the Hyundai Eon. Over the last six months (November 2011 – April 2012), the Spark sold at an average of 1,266 units per month whereas the Hyundai Eon sold at an average of 8,751 units per month and the segment leader, Maruti Suzuki Alto sold at an average of 27,916 units per month. This is despite GM having a very lucrative maintenance package, where all maintenance is taken care of by the company for three years.
The Spark has been in the Indian car market since 2007 and in 2009, it had a minor facelift such as reverse lights shifted from bumper to taillamp cluster. However, the long expected 800 cc engine version of the Spark has not hit the market so far. It has to be noted that the Daewoo Matiz on which the Spark is based, was powered by an 800 cc engine.
In the coming months, the Chevrolet Spark will also face stiff competition in the form of a new small car from Maruti that is expected to replace either the 800 or the Alto. Read more: Maruti Suzuki may replace Alto with a new car
With lot of buzz happening in the entry-level small car segment, do you think the Spark powered by an 800 cc engine can help improve its sales?
(Image source: Team BHP)