Chevrolet Spark 2013
Armen Hareyan's picture

Chevy Spark to follow Volt and Malibu Eco in 2013, but for select drivers

General Motors (Public, NYSE:GM) this morning announced its new all electric urban minicar 2013 Chevy Spark. This electric car, coming to US market, will be for sale only in limited quantity and only for select types of drivers. The stock market welcomed today's announcement, sending GM stock up 3.33 percent at the time of this writing.

According to GM the 2013 Chevy Spark will be solely an electric car. The consumers whom this electric vehicle will be offered for sale will be those who live in urban areas and have "predictable driving patterns." The new Chevrolet Spark will complement Chevy's growing range of electrified vehicles, including the Chevy Volt (see images of Volt) extended-range electric car and the 2013 Malibu Eco with eAssist technology, said Jim Federico, global vehicle chief engineer for electric vehicles at Chevrolet.

Torque News already reported in August about Chevy Spark's advent to U.S. markets. Little was known then about the details of the new all-electric 2013 Spark. But GM Communications guru Jason Laird Tweeted a comment by GM Product Chief Mark Reuss on August 4, 2011 that the Spark minicar is destined for the US.

GM is moving smart. The release about the 2013 Spark reads that Chevy will incorporate feedback from participants in Chevrolet’s electric vehicle demonstration fleets in Shanghai (Sail EV), Korea (Cruze EV) and India (Beat EV) into the new Spark electric car. “Our global demo fleets continue to provide insight into the needs of electric vehicle customers living in urban environments,” said Federico. “The Spark EV is another step in Chevrolet’s plan to provide customers with a variety of electrification solutions to address the lifestyle and transportation needs of people around the world.”

While the high prices and battery concerns of electric cars, currently on sale for U.S. drivers, may have prevented some consumers to purchase EVs, it's good to see GM taking a bold approach and moving forward with injecting more electric cars and new EV models in the U.S. market.

This electric model was introduced in India few months ago. Todays' announcement is good news for GM and the stock markets as the company's Chevrolet division is preparing to mark the centenary, coming on November 3.

Chevy Spark will differ from Chevrolet Volt. The Volt is equipped with a gasoline engine, which takes over the electric motor when the autonomy of the electric power expires. The 2013 Spark will be all electric car and will be for sale only for select types of urban customers traveling short distances.

The analogs of the all electric Spark are Nissan Leaf (see images of Nissan Leaf), and the upcoming all-electric Ford Focus (see images of 2012 Ford Focus) and Fiat 500. Nissan Leaf was unveiled last December. A fully electric version of Ford Focus is expected in late 2011. Next year Chrysler will offer an electric version of its Fiat 500.

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Just heard GM's Joel Ewanick say on CNBC the Spark Electric would be California; further saying it's a niche car, and the Volt is what they believe is needed. After driving the Nissan Leaf, I think he's wrong, unless the cost of the Volt comes way down.