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GM Slashes Price of Chevy Spark EV

Maker is the latest to try price cut to boost sluggish sales.

by on Apr.15, 2015

The Chevy Spark can launch to 60 in 8 sec.

General Motors is slashing the price of its slow-selling Chevrolet Spark battery-electric vehicle in a bid to boost demand.

It’s the latest in a string of price cuts by automakers struggling to build interest in plug-based vehicles, and the announcement comes just days after GM confirmed it will next month shut down production of its Chevy Volt plug-in hybrid due to lack of demand. It will re-launch production with the second-generation Volt that was introduced at the Detroit Auto Show earlier this year.

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“Chevrolet is committed to making EV driving more accessible, affordable and fun” Steve Majoros, director of Chevrolet Car and Crossover Marketing, said in a statement. “Spark EV customers will benefit from an impressive blend of technology, capability and low cost of ownership, now at an even more impressive price.”


GM Moves Spark Battery Production In-House

New pack built on same line as Volt.

by on May.14, 2014

LaTanya Clanton works on the Spark EV battery line. GM is bringing all of its electric vehicle battery building capabilities in-house at Brownstown.

General Motors is bringing the production of its new battery pack for the 2015 Chevrolet Spark EV in-house to its Brownstown Township, Michigan, plant. The plant also builds the packs for the Chevy Volt, Opel Ampera and Cadillac ELR.

“Using our in-house engineering and manufacturing expertise enabled us to deliver a battery system that is more efficient and lighter than the 2014 Spark EV without sacrificing range,” said Larry Nitz, executive director of GM global transmission and electrification engineering, in a statement.

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“Our successful working relationship with LG Chem has allowed us to deliver a new battery system for the Spark EV that helps us to better leverage our economies of scale.” (more…)

Chevy Puts “Performance” Into New Spark EV

More torque than a Ferrari 458?

by on Nov.07, 2013

The Chevrolet Spark EV Tech Performance package delivers more torque than a Ferrari 458.

The annual aftermarket extravaganza known as the SEMA Show has traditionally put a premium on performance, so that left many folks wondering why there was a little Chevrolet Spark EV on display at the Detroit maker’s stand alongside more traditional muscle cars like the Camaro and Chevrolet.

This wasn’t a regular Spark EV, it turned out, but a modified model that Chevy redubbed the Spark EV Tech Performance. And it has delivered a bit of a shock to those who think that battery cars are little more than high-tech stone ponies.

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The numbers suggest something quite different, the Tech Performance package pumping out an impressive 450 pound-feet of torque.  That’s 50 more than the stock Spark EV – but to put it into better perspective, that’s also more than the classic 1969 Chevrolet Camaro SS muscle car and 52 more lb-ft than a Ferrari 458 Italia.


Chevrolet Spark EV Starts at $19,995 After Credits

Battery car captures nation’s highest mileage rating.

by on May.23, 2013

The 2014 Chevrolet Spark EV can be purchased for as little as $17,500 in some locations due to federal, state and local incentives.

General Motors will begin selling its new Chevrolet Spark EV at select dealers in California and Oregon next month for a base price of $27,495 including destination charges.

Since the little battery-electric vehicle will qualify for a federal tax credit of $7,500, that will bring its effective price to $19,995 – and possible even lower thanks to various state and local tax credits. The maker also plans to offer a three-year, $199 a month lease after a downpayment of $999.

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That will position the Chevy Spark EV as one of the lowest-priced battery cars on the market, a move Chevy hopes will increase the appeal of the vehicle in a market still skeptical of electric propulsion. Based on EPA forecasts, the maker claims motorists could save as much as $150 a month on gasoline.


Chevy Spark Captures US Mileage Crown

Battery model also faster than gas-powered minicar.

by on Apr.25, 2013

The Spark EV will do 0 to 60 in under 8 seconds, significantly quicker than the gas model.

General Motors claims its new Chevrolet Spark has captured the U.S. fuel economy crown with a 119 MPGe -- or Miles Per Gallon-equivalent – rating. The new battery-electric vehicle has meanwhile been rated at 82 miles range on a full charge, according to the EPA.

The Spark is the Detroit maker’s first pure battery-electric vehicle, or BEV, since the GM EV1 was pulled from production in 1991. The Chevy Spark EV is part of a wave of new electric vehicles aimed at consumers in California where that state has mandated that manufacturers must sell so-called Zero-Emission Vehicles.

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While automakers are challenging that mandate in court, a number of them, including GM, Toyota, Chrysler and Honda and others, are covering their bases by coming up with what critics have dubbed “compliance cars,” vehicles they will offer only, or at least primarily, in California.


First Drive: 2014 Chevrolet Spark EV

This heartbeat is battery-powered.

by on Dec.11, 2012

The Spark EV will do 0 to 60 in under 8 seconds, significantly quicker than the gas model.

Is there a market for small battery-electric vehicles in the U.S. market?  Buyers be damned, it’s full speed ahead for the auto industry – in large part due to strict new rules passed by California’s seemingly all-powerful regulators.  Over the next several years you’ll see so-called Zero-Emission Vehicles coming from all the major auto manufacturers – unless they’re comfortable with being locked out of the huge California market.

Among the new offerings is the 2014 Chevrolet Spark EV. The electrified version of Chevy’s new minicar is the first General Motors battery-electric vehicle, or BEV, since the old GM EV1 was abandoned back in 1999.

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Officially unveiled at the recent LA Auto Show, was invited to attend a background briefing on the Spark EV – including a short drive.  While we didn’t have enough time behind the wheel to deliver the sort of full review we’d prefer we did get a sense of what to expect from the little battery car.

For those who might lump minicars and battery vehicles into the same, boring green category, the 2014 Chevrolet Spark EV is no stone pony.  Quite the contrary. In fact, it’s a lot more fun, especially coming off a stoplight, than the gas-powered version of the Chevy minicar.


Chevrolet Confirms New Spark EV Coming to LA

GM’s 1st battery car to share stage with other electrics.

by on Nov.14, 2012

An inside-out look at the new Chevrolet Spark EV.

Battery car proponents are getting charged up about the upcoming LA Auto Show. Chevrolet is the latest maker to confirm it will have some electrifying news to announce at the annual event – in the form of the new Spark EV.

The Chevy minicar will be General Motors’ first pure battery-electric vehicle, or BEV, since the much-heralded GM EV1 was pulled from the market after the 1999 model-year.

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“The Spark EV and next-generation of MyLink (Chevy’s new infotainment system) demonstrate Chevrolet’s commitment to delivering the advanced technologies that today’s consumers will be eager to adopt and truly value,” said Chevrolet General Marketing Manager Chris Perry.


GM Will Introduce Battery Version of Next-Gen Chevrolet Spark

Spark also to debut new global family of small gas engines.

by on Oct.12, 2011

Chevrolet will offer both a battery version of the new spark and a conventional gas model using an all-new engine family.

General Motors will introduce its first pure battery-electric vehicle, or BEV, sometime in 2013, basing it off the next-generation Chevrolet Spark platform.

The Spark EV initially will be sold in “select” urban markets around the world, including Southern California.  It will then roll out to other parts of the world, with GM officials anticipating a slow ramp-up of demand for the vehicle – and for electric vehicles in general.

The Spark minicar will also be among the first GM models to make use of an all-new line of 3- and 4-cylinder Ecotec engines GM plans to bring to market in an effort to both improve fuel-efficiency and expand its own economies of scale,

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Demand for the new Spark battery car “will be slow,” acknowledged Jim Federico, GM’s small car engineering chief, as “Customers need to get comfortable and used to” the new technology.  Nonetheless, GM officials said they recognize that the global push for cleaner, higher-mileage products will require the expanded use of “electrification” in all its various forms.