General Motors to launch Chevrolet Sail small car and sedan in India

General Motors (GM) India is planning to launch the China-specific Chevrolet Sail small car and sedan in India which will replace the Aveo U-VA and Aveo sedan presently being sold in India by 2012.

The Chevrolet Sail small car and sedan sold in China are powered by GM’s latest S-TEC 1.2 litre and 1.4 litre petrol engines which are equipped with variable valve technology.

The S-TEC 1.2 litre engine in the Sail small car is same engine that powers the Chevrolet Beat small car sold in India at present. The S-TEC engine has decent performance and at the same time returns a good mileage.

chevrolet sail sedan photo
Photo: China Spec Chevrolet Sail Sedan

GM India will also launch the diesel versions of the Sail small car and sedan as the demand for diesel small cars is high. Also read: GM to introduce CNG and LPG variants on cars

The Chevrolet Sail small car and sedan could have many parts in common; similar to what Maruti Suzuki did with the Swift and Swift Dzire. This will allow GM India to pitch the Sail twins in a highly-competitively market at aggressive prices and may help them boost sales.

chevrolet sail small car photo
Photo: China Spec-Chevrolet Sail Small Car

Currently, GM India’s hot selling models include the two small cars, Spark and Beat and the mid-size luxury sedan, the Cruze. However, the sales of other cars like the Aveo U-VA small-car, the Aveo sedan and the Optra sedan have dipped below the average for the past several months.

For instance, GM India sold 148 units of the Aveo UVA, 155 units of Aveo and 368 units of the Optra. When compared with sales figures of top selling models in the corresponding segments such as Maruti Swift (10,622), Maruti Swift Dzire (11,797) and Volkswagen Vento (2866), the sales of Chevrolet cars are almost insignificant. Also read: GM India to sell engines to interested car makers

The dated design, average performance and outdated features offered on these cars have been the chief factors discouraging buyers from investing in cars from the brand.

If the company retains the looks of Chevrolet Sail twins sold in China and offers ‘value for money’ features coupled with frugal engines in India, GM India could attract many new buyers.

GM India will launch six new passenger cars within the next two years. This will include the Sail small car and sedan. The company will invest almost $100 million in the next 12 months for production of both passenger and commercial vehicles.

GM India will soon foray into the commercial vehicle segment by launching a light commercial vehicle (LCV) this year.