Low-Cost Chevy

A souped-up version of General Motors Corp.'s forthcoming '04 Chevrolet Aveo is bowing at the Specialty Equipment Market Assn. (SEMA) show this month in Las Vegas. The concept features a supercharged adaptation of the production model's E-TEC II 1.6L DOHC 16-valve 4-cyl. engine, which delivers 103 hp at 6,000 rpm. The lime-green 5-door also will be equipped with larger brakes and other aftermarket

A souped-up version of General Motors Corp.'s forthcoming '04 Chevrolet Aveo is bowing at the Specialty Equipment Market Assn. (SEMA) show this month in Las Vegas.

The concept features a supercharged adaptation of the production model's E-TEC II 1.6L DOHC 16-valve 4-cyl. engine, which delivers 103 hp at 6,000 rpm. The lime-green 5-door also will be equipped with larger brakes and other aftermarket treatments.

Based on GM Daewoo Automotive and Technology Co. Ltd.'s (GMDAT's) Kalos subcompact car, the retail model features rear-drum brakes with a 7.8-in. (20-cm) diameter and a width measuring 1.38 ins. (3.5 cm). The diameter of the front brakes is 10.1 ins. (25 cm) and the thickness totals 0.95 ins. (2.4 cm).

“I think we have a very innovative and creative specialty-vehicle team that's been having a ball with Aveo,” says Aveo Marketing Director Margaret Brooks. “They find it a great canvas to work from,” she says, adding an SS performance version is a possibility.

With a price tag starting at $9,995, the South Korean-built Aveo provides GM with another opportunity to attract Gen Y auto enthusiasts, who are rapt with converting inexpensive front-wheel-drive cars, such as the Honda Civic, into street machines.

Available in some dealerships as early as December, Aveo is being built at GMDAT's Bupyong, South Korea, assembly plant. Brooks anticipates Aveo's annual U.S. sales will total at least 50,000 units, split evenly between 5- and 4-door models. Three-quarters of Aveo drivers will be first-time new-car buyers, Chevy predicts.

Aveo features a GM engine and offers standard perks some of its competitors do not, such as an MP3 player and remote-keyless entry (with the LS model).

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