2013 Chevrolet Aveo LS 1.2 16V (LPG) from Poland

Summary:

Very interesting option for someone looking for a recent and safe vehicle at a very good price

Faults:

Till now (December 2017) only the courtesy light (unable to turn the button to the permanent light on position - the part costs around 20 Euros) and a minor leakage of coolant from the thermostat housing - an issue reported by many Sonic (US version) owners and sometimes repaired under warranty.

General Comments:

It's a shame GM pulled out from the European market - apparently permanently. The Aveo T300 models (AKA Chevrolet Sonic or Holden Barina) were very competitive for all European superminis including the Opel/Vauxhall Corsa from GM and other popular models such as the Renault Clio, Dacia Sandero, Fiat Punto and Skoda Fabia.

This car is a 2013 1.2, 86 BHP, 16 valve, petrol, now running on LPG with a Polish made Stag 4 Qbox Plus installation.

Exterior - the Russian designer intended to create a four wheel motorbike, hence the rather quirky instruments inside. The quadlamps, bonnet, front grille and bumpers evoke the Camaro and generally the body has a certain sporty look. The rear door openers integrated next to the window give the idea of a coupe rather than a four door hatchback. Rear visibility is a problem due to the massive C pillars.

Interior - Roomy for four adults with plenty of head and knee room. Three cupholders in the center console and other places for storage - two large ones next to the air vents - perfect to hold mobile phones - and a second glovebox plus enough space on the front bins, though in the back there's nothing of the kind... only a pocket behind the passenger seat. There's a quite interesting ticket holder below the FM/AM, Aux and CD radio.

The seats are firm, however in the "bread and butter" version there's no height regulation, though the steering has adjustment in reach and rake. Not difficult to find a comfortable driving position; moreover your right knee and leg (or left for RHD) will be held by the center console. The general look is of plastic everywhere, but the dual tone dash helps a little...

The instruments are inspired by motorcycles, though Chevrolet never made them and is known for the vivid blue digital speedometer and computer and the large tachometer with vivid red needle. The warning lights are abundant and organized either in the tacho or in small round holes above and below the speedometer, petrol and on-board computer display. The basic versions don't have a computer though.

The steering wheel is electrically power assisted and has a fantastic design and size; it's very light to turn and makes parking maneuvers very easy.

Equipment - In the basic version, as the one I own, there's no rear courtesy light or even rear speakers or bins. The remote FOB has only open and close doors and no boot opener or "panic button". No electrical rear windows or mirrors, but comes with standard A/C and cruise control - very helpful in motorways. The A/C in very hot summer days struggles to cool the inside even when fully charged. Takes time, but it will cool the cabin.

There a lot of chimes - quite loud despite regulation - and a complete "buckle seatbelt" info with again more chimes if not buckled.

The front speakers and twitters are good, but in the basic model only in the front... There's also no Bluetooth or USB in the glove box as in other versions.

Engine and Gearbox - Smooth and pleasant clutch and gear lever. The engine is enough for city driving but struggles on motorways - maximum speed around 170 Km/h and around 13 seconds from 0 to 100 Km/h - on LPG around 14 seconds.

Consumption - It is thirsty in city reaching around 9 liters per 100 Km and circa 10 to 11 liters in LPG. One full tank of LPG is enough for 320/340 Km.

Mixed consumption around 6,5 liters per 100 Km, meaning 8 liters of LPG.

Safety - ESP and traction control as standard, 6 airbags, pyrotecnical seatbelts and ABS brakes plus an outstanding five stars in EuroNcap makes the Aveo a very interesting option for a small family or second car.

Comfort and handling - Comfort is not the strong side of the T300. Far from the absorbing suspension of French cars like Citroen, Peugeot and Renault/Dacia.

Potholes and uneven roads are felt, especially in the rear. Speed bumps make the front and rear passengers go up and down violently from their seats IF the driver is not careful enough to slow down; again French cars are much more comfortable in this aspect. This stiffness however brings good handling and a feeling of safety on the road while there's not too much body roll - felt often in Dacia's and Citroen's cars. Together with the ESP, one can approach a curve quite fast without any understeer.

A pity GM is no more selling in Europe. The service is now in the hands of Opel/Vauxhall, which recently was purchased by the French PSA Group...

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 28th December, 2017