AutoPacific’s Ideal Vehicle Award (IVA) recognizes the vehicle that best hits the target its buyers demand. Winning an IVA shows the product planners, engineers and designers of the manufacturer understand what their target customers want and have created the vehicle to best meet their demands.
Corvette Edges Jaguar XK for IVA Win: The 2012 Chevrolet Corvette comes closest to the ideal of any Sports Car. The Corvette edges out the second place Jaguar XK to win in the sports car class. (Porsche Boxster/Cayman and 911 scored higher in IVA calculations, but their sample sizes were to small to qualify to be included in the final ratings). Having eighty-percent or more of owners rating a characteristic ideal is outstanding. Achieving a score of ninety-percent is even more impressive. Ninety-percent or more of Corvette owners rate its exterior size, passenger roominess and ride and handling ideal. Eighty-percent or more of Corvette owners find these additional characteristics ideal: driver’s seat visibility, driver’s seat comfort and tires.
The Chevrolet Corvette also was best in class in AutoPacific’s 2012 Vehicle Satisfaction Award research.
A Few Shortfalls – Infotainment and Power and Ingress/Egress: A sports car is all about style, speed and handling and not about practicality. About 43% of Corvette owners want better infotainment technology. This may be buyer’s remorse if they did not get a package with the navigation system and Bose audio. About 36% of Corvette owners want more power and acceleration than they have now. With a base car with 430HP and 4.2 seconds zero to sixty, they should be satisfied, but sports car owners always seem to want more. Corvette is extremely low to the ground leading 34% of owners to want the car to be easier to get into and out of. About 26% want better interior storage than they presently have. About 24% of Corvette owners want better interior lighting than now. About 21% would like more daring exterior styling for an already expressively styled car. Maybe they are thinking of Ferrari or Lamborghini.
You can find an Autobytel review of this IVA award winner at http://www.autobytel.com/auto-news/awards/consumer-s-ideal-cars-revealed-in-2012-iva-awards-112116/
For a complete summary of all AutoPacific 2012 Ideal Vehicle Award results contact firstname.lastname@example.org and title your email “IVA Results”. A copy of the results will be emailed to you within 48-hours.
Chevy’s Entry Hatch Grows Up
While Chevrolet‘s presence at the 2007 Frankfurt auto show was low-key, this year they showed off the five-door Aveo ahead of European sales in March 2008. No doubt this tough-looking little car will complement the U.S. Aveo sedan soon after, and Europe is also on track to get a three-door, too.
With the latest Aveo sedan, Chevrolet dropped the old Kalos name, a holdover from the pre-GM DAT Daewoo days. The hatchbacks had carried on in Europe with the Kalos badge, but with this change the little car will be badged Aveo in Europe, the United States, China, and most major markets. (Korean-market cars still carry the Daewoo badge and the Kalos name.)
Though unable to get inside the little car, its exterior is striking and takes the small-car segment up a notch. It wears Chevrolet’s latest global design theme, with a deep split grille subtly reminiscent of the latest Audis, cat-eye headlights, and just enough chrome to set it apart. The fog lamps in front and rear spoiler contribute to the sporting feel, but are likely optional equipment. The side-view mirrors now include indicators, and the round taillights give the rear some personality. Like the sedan, which changed for 2007MY, the hatchback is now longer and slightly wider. Where this change in proportion makes the sedan looks a bit tippy, the hatchback doesn’t look so oddly portioned. (Click here
for images of the current Kalos.)
The photos show that the interior shares much with the sedan, including the center stack, HVAC vents and controls, and steering wheel, but the gauge cluster is unique with gauges set into sporty round binnacles and more chrome accents.
Motive power for the European Aveo will come from the known 98HP 1.4L engine, mated to an automatic transmission, and an all-new 84HP 1.2L DOHC I4. Both offer improved economy and emissions numbers, and the 1.2L gained 12HP. When this little looker gets to the States, it is more likely to take the same 1.6L the sedan currently sees.
GM DAT is one of the bright spots in GM’s global network, further supported by our first look at this little Aveo. Though entry level and destined to feel cheap compared with cars costing more, there has been dramatic improvement over the years in these products, a clear combination of GM’s money and technical expertise, GM’s mid-decade corporate understanding that interiors are important, combined with Daewoo’s understanding of small cars, and the access to low-cost production facilities certainly can’t be hurting the process.
Will One of These Concepts Be Part of Chevy’s U.S. Future?
The flux of fuel prices and concerns about the environment are keeping fuel-efficient vehicles in the news. With General Motors‘ access to global small-car platforms; the use of the Chevrolet brand worldwide for affordable, reliable mainstream cars; and GM’s efforts to more effectively use their global resources, the potential exists for Chevrolet to add a small car for the States that would slot below the Aveo, though traditionally small cars are not profitable. Chevrolet would like to know if U.S. buyers are ready for the idea, and if they are, what type of vehicle might make the most impact. Check out more pictures and news and vote for your favorite at www.vote4chevrolet.com.
In studying this future, Chevrolet showed three dramatically different small-car concepts at the 2007 New York International Auto Show
. The idea, as a side benefit, also creates buzz around the Chevrolet brand and can help position them as forward thinkers amongst the youngest demographics. These concepts, Beat, Groove, and Trax, are designed to appeal to younger buyers and each fills a different theme and lifestyle. Each was designed by different designers at GM’s South Korean design studio on the same global mini architecture; the Beat was built in India, but the Groove and Trax built at GM’s Warren, Michigan, Tech Center.
During the third quarter of 2007, Chevrolet dealers will get an Equinox with some power-oriented bragging rights, none too late with the base 185HP V6 Equinox has been suffering with so far. The Equinox Sport will be among the vehicles GM shows off to the public at the Detroit auto show next month. Most of Equinox’s competition can boast output in the 240 to 265HP range, in top-end versions if not base models. While the base V6 is adequate, enthusiastic drivers are sure to appreciate the extra oomph. Chevy’s ad guys will likely also appreciate being able to advertise a competitive number, even if it’s not the best in segment.
The 2008MY Equinox Sport model brings GM’s 263HP 3.6L DOHC 24v V6 with a six-speed automatic to the line. This V6 is quickly going being added across the GM landscape, and is the only engine the related Suzuki XL7 offers (though Suzuki gets the 250HP version). The Sport also gets a lowered and revised suspension with eighteen-inch wheels and tires, but drops the roof rack in standard form. Visual cues to its more aggressive nature include body color in the grille and in the rear accent above the license plate; these are both chrome on the standard Equinox (view image
). The lower front and rear fascias add brushed metal trapezoidal air inlets (front) and exhaust outlets (rear).
Inside, there will be new seats with more supportive side bolsters, leather-wrapped steering wheel, and a J-gate shifter to better operate the self-shift tap-up, tap-down feature. Ordering the Sport moves the Multi-Flex seating system, remote start, and XM radio from optional to standard compared with the regular Equinox. Pricing will be announced closer to launch.