Big honkin’ V-8’s are great fun, but they can be a little bit on the expensive side to operate as a track car. They tend to go faster (duh) and weigh more which means that disposable items like tires and brakes are, well, disposable. Also, their point of entry tends to be a pricier than a little car. All of my competitive driving has been done in teeny, tiny little things which tends to cause chuckles when people see my rather large presence next to a pocket rocket.
For some time now, Chevy has been absent from the sub compact performance market. With yesterday’s unveiling of the Aveo RS show car, it would seem that we are about to see small performance from Chevrolet.
The Aveo RS is said to hint at the next generation Aveo’s appearance and adding some sport visuals to it. Backing up the look is a 140 horsepower 1.4l four banger breathing through a turbo. That power will make it to the wheels through a 6 speed manual transmission.
While at this point the Chevy folks are not committing to the future of the RS, there is a lot of knowing smiles when they are asked pointed questions. Beat around the bush a bit and the smiles get bigger and the discussion gets more optimistic. Somehow I think it would be a safe bet to expect that we might see the RS model on North American streets by 2011. When that happens, you can be sure to see some active in grassroots racing!
Chevrolet press release and photos after the break.
DETROIT Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Chevrolet today announced the world debut of the Aveo RS show car at the 2010 North American International Auto Show. It features a European-inspired hot hatch look designed to appeal to young enthusiasts, and hints at the next-generation Aveo.
Longer, wider and more spacious than the current production Aveo, the Aveo RS showcases the carÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s upscale-looking design cues both inside and out, and presents the many personalization options potentially available on the next-generation car.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We hope the Aveo RS show car will demonstrate that we are as serious about redefining the Aveo and its place in the small-car segment as we were about reinventing the Malibu,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet general manager.
The Aveo RS show car, finished in electric Boracay Blue, wears global Chevrolet design cues such as the dual element grille, round taillamps and fender flares, but designers turned up the attitude on the show car with low openings and a lower mouth trimmed in a combination of brushed and polished aluminum. Outboard fog lamps are integrated into an exaggerated brake-cooling inlet that flows into the front fender flares, creating an aggressive-looking face.
Exposed headlamps, with their brushed aluminum structural surround, are inspired by the designersÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ affection for motorcycles. The sleek side profile is characterized by uninterrupted body side lines, a high beltline and low roofline. The side mirrors with amber-colored turn signal indicators carry the same shape as the car and seemingly disappear into the profile. At first glance, the car actually looks like a three-door hatch because the rear door handles are discreetly located in the Ã¢â‚¬Å“CÃ¢â‚¬Â-pillar area.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“The Aveo RS show car demonstrates how progressive design can inject personality into a small car,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Michael Simcoe, executive director, North American Exterior Design. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We want customers to see it and have an emotional reaction to it.Ã¢â‚¬Â
No performance-minded car earns its street cred without large wheels and tires. The Aveo RS show carÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s wheels are 19-inch, five-spoke with a gun metal metallic finish Chevrolet logo. The wheel openings reveal large Boracay Blue brake calipers.
The rear of the show car continues the sport theme, with an integrated spoiler that flows from the roof, a center-mounted exhaust and chrome exhaust tips. The exposed motorcycle-inspired rear taillamps feature tinted aluminum housings and a discreet Bowtie logo.
Spacious and stylish interior
With its matte black interior highlighted by gloss black, metallic and blue accents, the Aveo RS show car reflects as much attention to detail as the exterior. The Boracay Blue theme continues inside, with accent stitching across the dual cockpit instrument panel, front and rear door insert, steering wheel rim, gear shift boot, parking brake, leather seat bolster and even the floor mats. The integrated center stack holds the gearshift, HVAC controls and the sound system, including a USB port. Ice-blue backlighting on the audio display, telltale indicator screen and knobs augments the blue stitching.
The motorcycle inspiration also carries inside, with a round, analog tachometer set within an asymmetrical LCD readout also trimmed in milled metal with round cutouts; and round, aluminum-trimmed side vents.
The interior is as functional as it is stylish, with storage compartments in the center stack and doors. The rear seats fold flat for carrying larger items.
The Aveo RS show car is powered by the same highly efficient 138-horsepower (103 kW) 1.4L I-4 Ecotec turbocharged engine that will be available in the upcoming Chevrolet Cruze.
A six-speed manual transmission is designed to ensure the car will provide a spirited driving experience.
For the show car, designers created a special engine cover in graphite silver with a brushed aluminum insert. The coolant and power steering fluid fill caps are rimmed in ice blue, and the honeycomb vents flanking the center of the cover are matte-finished in shadow chrome and designed to match the wheel color.
Chevrolet has previously announced the new Aveo will be built at Orion Assembly in Orion Township, Mich., in 2011, a move that will restore 1,200 jobs to Southeast Michigan. Timing for retooling Orion Assembly for Aveo production is anticipated to begin in late 2010.