Chevrolet hatches its affordable Aveo

Chevrolet Aveo is a compact supermini that offers low-cost motoring for up to five people.

Chevrolet Aveo is a compact supermini that offers low-cost motoring for up to five people. - Credit: Chevrolet

The Chevrolet Aveo is a compact supermini with compact prices and running costs.

Chevrolet Aveo (2008-11)

Engines – Chevrolet's core Aveo fleet consists of 1.2 and 1.4-litre petrol engines. For what is effectively an urban runabout, the petrol variants make a lot of financial sense. Neither is particularly quick but they are willing and reasonable refined engines in the real world.

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Exterior – The classic hatchback shape is a familiar one. The doors open wide for easy access and the rear tailgate is a good size and easy to operate. The styling is conservative, which should ensure broad appeal among both young and old buyers.

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Interior – Dark plastics dominate the cabin. It's nothing to be worried about, and there's always the view that such an interior will be a family-friendly and durable environment. The switchgear is familiar stuff, while cabin space is good enough for a small but growing family.

Driving – With its light, yet accurate, steering and slick gearshift, the Aveo makes city driving easy. The petrol engines might not be that powerful but they are willing and reasonably refined so long as you don't push them too hard. Visibility is good from the driver's seat. Despite its modest performance the Aveo can be confidently driven long distances with the minimum of fuss.

Ownership – The Aveo excels in town thanks to its compact footprint and good visibility from behind the wheel. The small-capacity engines and the promise of above-average fuel economy should ensure savings at the fuel pump and when it comes to taxing and paying for your pride and joy.

What to look for – Like with so many city cars it's important to check for parking dents and kerbed wheels. Walk away if you see more than a light scratch as it could signal unseen neglect or abuse. It goes without saying that any evidence of interior damage should be viewed in a similar light, plus a full service history is essential for complete peace of mind.

Model history – 2008, Chevrolet launches new Aveo to replace Kalos. This compact supermini offers low-cost motoring for up to five people. The petrol range consists of 1.2 and 1.4-litre engines, plus the option of an automatic gearbox for the latter. Modest equipment levels across the range include basic safety kit.

Reasons to buy – Low-cost urban transport, easy to drive, willing petrol engines, durable interior.

Reasons to beware – Lots of competition, hard cabin plastics, vocal petrol engines.

Pick of the range – Aveo 1.2 LS.

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