Windy City Media Group Frontpage News Home
CELEBRATING 28+ YEARS OF Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender NEWS

Search Gay News Articles
Advanced Search
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2014-11-26
Download Issue
  News Index   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds     AIDS @ 32       Marriage
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime

Sponsor
UChicago students host homeless youth panel UChicago students host
homeless youth panel
By Gretchen Rachel Blickensderfer On Nov. 19, the University of Chicago's (UChicago's) ...

Browse Gay News Index   Browse Gay News Archives
  Windy City Times

2013 Chevrolet Spark: A better micro?
VEHICLE REVIEW
by Casey Willimas, Gaywheels.com
2012-11-27

facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


Americans used to look at micro cars and fantasize about flicking them off the roadways with full-size SUVs or V8-powered muscle cars. Then, gas trucked past four dollars a gallon, and we began to think, "Gee, I really don't need 5,000 pounds of steel and gas-sucking family bus to get to work." The Smart fortwo, Fiat 500 and Scion iQ soon appeared on U.S. shores. Now, Chevrolet thinks there might be room for an even better micro.

Inexpensive does not have to mean cheap. Chevy's designers couldn't get around tall, urban-friendly proportions, but they also sculpted hood edges, carved character lines, and added hood-length headlamps for eye candy. The Spark punches above its modest price point with standard 15-inch alloy wheels, exhaust that exits through the rear bumper and chrome accents. Colors like denim, lemonade and techno pink brighten gray streets. Considering its micro-price, the Spark is a very nicely styled car.

And it gets better on the inside. Unlike other micros, passengers enter through four doors and have a back seat large enough for real humans (you know, the kind with legs). The body-color trim on the dash and doors, the motorcycle-inspired gauge cluster, French-stitched seats, and leatherette-covered steering wheels feel expensive, even if they're illusions. So what if the dash and every panel are molded plastic? If you want a Cadillac, buy one.

One thing you'll never get in a Spark, though, is a CD player. Just as Apple ditched floppies during the '90s, Chevy is kicking the silver disc to the curb. Since most drivers walk around with smartphones nowadays, all engineers had to do was create an easy interface and link them in.

Using a touchscreen your great-grandmother could understand, drivers use their USB- or Bluetooth-connected phone to access music, pictures, voice-activated calling, Pandora Internet radio and Stitcher Smart Radio. They can even watch video on the screen when parked. The just-announced BringGo app summons full GPS navigation including Local Search via Google and live traffic updates. BringGo has a one-time charge of $50—a pittance compared to typical factory-installed navigation systems.

On the downside, if our drive through busy Chicago is any indication, the Spark should probably avoid high-speed tollways. At 2,269 pounds (minus humans), with an 84 hp, 1.25-liter four-cylinder engine, Spark drivers pilot a car 450 pounds heavier than a Smart fortwo with just 12 more ponies under the hood. Add in another 360 pounds (or more) for a couple of passengers, and the situation gets worse. The Spark is an urban car and that's where it should stay, whether shifted through the standard five-speed manual or optional four-speed automatic transmission. Fuel economy kisses 32/38 mpg city/hwy.

If you want a swifter little Chevy, spend a couple grand more and get a turbocharged Sonic, which will fix many of the Spark's shortcomings. However, no Sonic comes with a $12,995 sticker like the base Spark, which includes a five-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty. Lay down $17,500 for one with all the extras.

Chevy hopes that the Spark's roomy interior, sophisticated style, affordable price, and that same park-me-anywhere spirit that carried Smart to our shores will buoy its bigger micro. We'll soon know.

2013 Chevy Spark

Four-passenger, FWD hatchback

Powertrain: 84 hp, 1.25-liter I4, five-speed manual transmission

Suspension f/r: Independent/compound crank

Wheels: 15"/15" alloy f/r

Brakes: disc/drum fr/rr with ABS

Must-have features: Style, touch screen

Fuel economy: 32/38 mpg city/hwy

Assembly: South Korea

Base price: $12,995

See more at www.Gaywheels.com .


facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily
agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here.
Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you
stay on this page, the more you help us.

Auto companies at top of equality index-but why Hyundai ? 2014-11-26
Everyone loves the 2015 Mazda6 2014-10-22
Mary Bonauto, Alison Bechdel, Samuel Hunter are MacArthur Fellows 2014-09-17
Auto news: Porsche's protections; gay designer on 'Motor City' 2014-07-08
Myth-busting gay car stereotypes 2014-07-08
Center, MINI's wedding contest in final round 2014-04-30
Knives and autopsies just the start in new Peggy Shinner book 2014-03-26
Fields Auto Group moving to Glenview, other auto news 2014-03-25
VEHICLE REVIEW 2014 Toyota Tundra: Bred by Uncle Sam 2014-03-25
Chevrolet provides a gay night out at the auto show 2014-02-19
Chicago Auto Show in town; 'Charity' scores 2014-02-11
2014 Land Rover LR4 scoffs at snow 2014-01-21
2014 Corvette Stingray leaves enthusiasts breathless 2013-12-25
Windy City Limousine backs LGBT community 2013-12-25
Autobahn 2013-12-18
Autobiography of My Hungers 2013-12-18
Muscle-car event takes over convention center 2013-12-04
Chicago Auto Show has revamped website 2013-11-26
2014 GMC Sierra: glamorous 2013-11-26
Roscoe's in Red Bull Flugtag 2013-09-18
MOMBIAN Baby, I can drive your car 2013-08-26
Lambda Car Club hosts invitational 2013-07-24
Lambda Car Club in Chicago 2013-07-10
Lambda Car Club event July 17-21 2013-07-09
Chicago Motor Cars hosts goldRush finish; more auto news 2013-06-26
VEHICLE REVIEW: 2013 Nissan 370Z Roadster touring, with a 'Z' 2013-06-26
2013 Mazda MazdaSpeed3 2013-05-21
2013 Mazda CX-5 pounces like a cheetah 2013-04-23
Auto show: first for 2013; LGBT Auto Show briefing held 2013-02-27
Auto show runs through Feb. 18 2013-02-13
Mike Ettleson helps preview the Chicago Auto Show 2013-01-22
Chicago Auto Show marks first for 2013, other auto news 2013-01-01
Northfield Volvo is LEED-certified 2012-10-24
Auto show marks first for next year 2012-10-24
To buy or lease? That is the question 2012-10-24
VEHICLE REVIEW 2013 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1: Addictive and outrageously fun 2012-09-26
2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek 2012-08-22
2012 Buick Regal GS: Paint It Black 2012-07-25
Auto news 2012-07-25
VEHICLE REVIEW 2013 Acura RLX Concept: Luxurious, sporty and green 2012-05-23





Copyright © 2014 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 

LGBT activist Ouma on work, Tanzania and future hopes
 
Afraid of Dark to premiere at Chicago Cultural Center
 
Theater, dance, music news and events
 
Having HIV/AIDS: Fighting stigma
 
WINDY CITY TIMES' 2014 HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE: Week one of two
 
Windy City Times Current DownloadNightspots Current DownloadQueercast Current Download
Windy City Media Group BlogsJoin Our Email List!Donate Now
Sponsor


Sponsor

  News Index   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds     AIDS @ 32       Marriage
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime



About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video      News Videos      Nightspots Videos      Entertainment Videos      Queercast Videos      Comedy Videos     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.