When did the Spark make its debut? I just saw a tv commercial for it and have never heard of it until now. Have I been living under a rock?
Competition is not something manufacturers seek. What they are looking for is a monopoly…
"The Chevrolet Spark, originally branded prominently as the Daewoo Matiz, is a city car produced by the South Korean automaker GM Korea,
Yaris, Fit, that kind of thing.
It’s a new model for USA, entry level hatchback for people who don’t need something bigger
It’s basically a replacement for the unloved Aveo. Similarly tiny, cheap, low powered. The styling is a bit funkier, trying to market it to younger buyers. It’s competing with the Kia Rio, Hyundai Accent, Mazda2, Toyota Yaris, and any other small, entry-level car you can name. Scion IQ. The Ford Fiesta is nicer and more expensive. I don’t expect it to sell well, though I have seen a couple (I live in San Francisco, where tiny city cars are popular). It’s just a little too basic and in this category most of the competition is roomier (the Scion excepted) and just a little nicer. I’d be looking hard at an Accent or Rio if I was in the market. They are surprisingly nice.
We saw it when we looked for my oldest daughter’s first car. She preferred the Cruze.
Throw the Smart and the little Fiat into the mix.
Quite a few of the recently arrived yuppies get these things in my neighborhood because parking is tight.
Yes, in my neighborhood there are a lot of short spaces that can fit a tiny car, but not even an ordinary subcompact. We have one between our driveway and the neighbor’s, and people kept overlapping our driveway. Grrr. We finally paid upwards of a hundred dollars to have the city come out and put red paint on the last 18" next to our driveway (that’s what they’ll do). It does seem to have done the trick. There’s a Fiat that usually gets it now and fits OK.
I can see why those tiny cars sell here in San Francisco. There are at least two of those spaces on almost every residential block. They do have to compete with the motorcycles, but that’s all. If I had to street park I’d be very tempted, though I don’t know what I’d get. I hate both the Smart and the IQ and the Fiat seems too expensive for such basic transportation. The Rio/Accent are a little too big for those spaces, I think.
Link To A Recent Review From The Detroit News: June 26, 2013 at 1:00 am
Spark ignites global excitement for Chevrolet brand
I agree that they’re ‘‘competeing’’ for market share dominance.
Like the shelf space wars in the grocery stores ;
Just like Coke -vs- Pepsi. ( can’t find RC cola to save your life 'round here )
Just like Johnson & Johnson.
Just like Frito Lay. ( where’s my Clover Club chili chips ? )
One stop shopping.
They seriously don’t want a customer to walk accross the street. Sell them anything they want right here.
They know some buyers still show brand loyalty, too. Sell them a Spark when they’re young and they’ll be driving an Impala to the senior center. Or so the hope goes, though US makes don’t engender the loyalty they once did (truck buyers excepted). Japanese buyers now seem more loyal. My family has a lot of contented Honda buyers.
“Sell them a Spark when they’re young and they’ll be driving an Impala to the senior center.”
That strategy worked on me. My parents always had success with GM cars. After I graduated from college, I had a couple of German cars and a Ford, but they only served to drive me back towards GM. Since the 1980s, I’ve owned 6 GM cars, and I was and still am a happy owner. I always have a GM vehicle in mind when I buy a new car. It doesn’t always win, but there’s always one in the running.
I was so dead set against Ford for awhile after my experience with my Contour, but I’m really digging their current line up(the new Fusion is pretty sexy, IMO).
I was going to buy another Honda, after the great service my Civic gave me, but Honda is like the grannymmobile of the auto industry; reliable, but boring as all get out.
The bailout of GM and Chrysler pretty much set me against those brands, although Chrysler didn’t build anything I was really interested in, save for the 300 and Viper. I will give props to GM for putting a V8 in their newer Impala to try something different, but they should have offered it with RWD instead. The Corvette is the only new GM vehicle I’d consider, only because it’s cheaper than finding a restored big block 60s version
Honda is not the most boring brand out there. That belongs to Toyota hands down.
What is the most boring small car? Yaris.
What is the most boring compact car? Corolla.
What is the most boring midsize car? Camry.
What is the most boring hatchback? Matrix.
Toyota is the new GM in this regard.
If you want a rwd full-size Chevy just wait until next year and buy an SS. It’s already being sold as a police car so you can check it out. It’s essentially the same car as the old Pontiac G8, stretched a few inches, and this time made in the US, not Australia. If Ford hadn’t canned the Crown Vic and GM seen an opportunity to sell police cars we would have never seen this happen. I still don’t see why Ford wanted out. They had paid off all the development costs on the Crown Vic a decade ago (at least) and they dominated the police market (and sold plenty of cabs, too). GM seems to think they can make money doing this, but they must have higher costs than Ford did. The Charger is also credible competition for GM, though they had a hard time selling against the well-established Crown Vic. Anyhow, it will give anyone wanting a bland rwd Chevy an opening.
Toyota is very bland, and they have an aging bunch of buyers. Last I saw figures their median buyer was over fifty, a full decade older than Honda’s. The median Camry buyer was near sixty! Given how many of those they sell they must be dominating sales to older buyers. They’re the new Buick. Very worrisome, but it doesn’t seem to be hurting them too much so far. Maybe everyone gradually reaches the age where all they want is a boring, cushy Camry. Easy to drive, dead reliable, completely risk-free. I’d still rather have an Accord or Mazda6. It’s not that they’re exciting, but the Camry is so frumpy. There are enough ugly cars in the world already.
I never did test drive the Corolla, but I did test out a Camry, Venza, Tacoma, and Rav4. The Rav4 surprised me and made it to the top 3 choices before I bought my car.
The new Civic(08 or 09 at the time) I test drove made me drowsy when I took it for a test drive; I’d been fully alert when I asked to take it for a spin.
I think it was Bunky Knudsen as manager of the Pontiac division who made the statement “You can sell an old man a young man’s car, but you can’t sell a young man an old man’s car”.
That may have been true in the 1950s, but a large number of today’s young people don’t have that interest in cars. Today, the statement should read “You can a young person a geezer’s car, but you can’t sell a geezer a young person’s car”.
What about the stereotypical mid-life crisis cars, then?
The spark is certainly cute but not for everyone, if you need a small car for the city then maybe but better options even within the Chevy line are available for not that much more. The Scion IQ, Mazda2, and the Smart are the only real competitors.