Chevrolet Aveo Test drive

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These little Daewoo made Chevys seem to be almost everywhere.
I hear they are even more popular in Canada.

After a couple of days, I came out actually pretty impressed.
The first thing you notice is how roomy the car is.

Even in the back.
Everything seems to be well put together, but the interior does look pretty plain.

Especially in black.
There are a few nice and unexpected touches. Like the black glossy plastic on the door handles.

Or this bit of chrome around the shifter.

Once under way, I was amazed how smooth the little 1.5 Liter engine was. And quiet.
It never feels rough.
Breaks and steering were fine, nothing special. At least it didn’t feel like a video game when I was turning.
Another surprise was the suspension.
It is a very smooth ride. Smoother than many larger and much more expensive cars.
And the whole thing felt very solid over bumps.
Best of all, I got around 36 mpg !

I got pretty interested in this car and started doing some research.
There is a lot of new competition out there. The main one being the all new Toyota Yaris.
The Yaris seems to have a much more fun interior. Although it is quite a bit more expensive. (A loaded Aveo can still reach over $15 000)
And the Honda Fit is coming up.
So is a redesigned Scion etc….

But. And there is a big BUT….
I just found out crash results for the Aveo. And they are very scary.
In the US, the Chevrolet Aveo got a 5 star rating:

But the European test of the new version (same structure) shows another story:

I am not sure what to think about these. The European test seems to be a front offset crash. (Usually more realistic)
That would actually make me think twice before I buy a Chevrolet Aveo.

For 2007, the sedan has a new design and interior. That new interior is much more upscale than before.
I am not sure if the cool looking 4 door hatch is returning for 2007.
As I said, I am a bit on the fence about this car. It is a great drive for the price. But if safety is a concern, I would wait for more results.

Conversation 17 comments

  1. Before the trolls come here and rant crap(hear me Summer’s Eve?),yes the safety is a preety big concern with me and I rather buy a Fit or a Scion XA.Their gas milage is decent as well.

  2. In the US, crash tests rankings are categorized by the class size of the car. So if the Aveo has the best or is tied for the best with other cars in its class, it gets a 5 star rating. Of course, it would get obliterated by a Crown Vic.

    So my question is, are the European ratings compared to other cars in its class or are the ratings against every other car in every other class? Also, how do other cars in this size class do in Euro crash tests?

  3. They tested the new Peugeot 207 and it did very well.
    The Aveo seems to have done bad, regardless of its class.

  4. The US GOV does a very slow frontal crash test where car hits a wall with the full front of the car. The European NCAP test crashes car at 60kph into a 50% barrier the full energy of the crash has to be absorbed by half of the bumper. The IIHS test is very similar to NCAP. The NHTSA test is garbage. Pretty much any car will get 5 stars in that test.

    Compare the Aveo’s 1.5 star rating with these other small car.
    Honda Jazz/Fit 4 stars
    Toyota Yaris 5 stars
    Fiat Punto 5 stars
    Peugeot 1007 5 stars
    Renault Clip 5 stars

    This has nothing to do with mass. Just pathetic engineering on GMs part.

  5. I rode in a rental Aveo a while ago. I was literally shocked by the smallness of it. My knees were touching the glovebox in the front passenger seat. I’m not huge, but, in the event of an accident, I’m pretty sure I would be a amputee.

    If I were buying, I’d go with a Honda Fit, because it has better looks (to me), really neat “Magic Seats” and the sport version should be pretty fun to drive.

  6. The rating on EuroNCAP is the same for all cars.Yaris has 5 stars, whereas ’03 Mercedes E-class has only 4. Yaris is safer against the concrete wall, but in real situation probably not.

  7. Thanks for the usual insightful review. It sounds like a good car, overall (but also thanks for the insight on the European crash results).

    I was mostly surprised that the engine is satisfying (I expected it to be coarse) and that the ride is so good.

    Have you tested the new Accent or Rio yet, another set of small cars?

  8. I must say I didn’t get to drive the other cars you mention.
    But I was very surprised by the engine. It had enough power for regular use. I took the car to 85mph on the freeway and it was fine.
    The automatic was very quick to respond, and also super smooth.

    As I said, the ride was very comfortable and also surprising for that price range.
    But maybe I was expecting too little. Maybe all the other cars you mention are that good.
    I’ll have to find out…

  9. Ah, in your picture of the back seat, it seems to be a bit cramp. I haven’t try the car, (actually, I may not have the chance to try it at tall.) Ah, Vince, can u tell me is it comfortable at the back? Thank you.

    O, one other thing, anyone know the crash test result of the HUMMER?

  10. Hi, i have a 07 Aveo5 hach, and I am suprised, i didn’t wana buy but when i drove it, just couldn’t go home without it, i drove yaris, xa, accent, mazda3, nissan versa, corola, vw cab con and a passat, and i was so impressed with the aveo, it has a good warantee but deson’t get as good as mpg compared to the rest. so it’s been 30 days and 2 night ago someone tried to break into it, they broke both locks on the doors and the hatch but could not get in thankfully, the damage is bad but no paint came off just bent body where they used screws and thier tools, the glass has scratches too but i guess it didn’t break if they tired to do it, expensive repair and i have to wait for part from korea, but i am impressed. I am sad that it’s all damaged but still love it. good luck everyone.

  11. Hi! Don’t freak about the EuroNCAP rating that you pulled; the car that Chevrolet was selling as “Aveo” is not similar to the American Aveo. It is a different car; you should look EuroNCAP for “Daewoo Kalos.” That is the same as the American Aveo. However, if it makes any difference, the Kalos (US Aveo) only received 3 stars overall, but at least one wasn’t crossed out like on the Euro “Aveo.” I have a Kalos and it isn’t bad, but I do like the Yaris’s styling a bit better.

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