Exclusive: New Chevrolet Spark To Debut In NY, Spark EV Not Renewed – But Still Lives On

MAR 11 2015 BY JAY COLE 22

The all-new 2016 Chevy Spark (teaser image above) will make its world debut at the New York Auto Show on April 2.

Chevy Spark EV To Continue Into 2016 - But Only In First Gen Trim

Chevy Spark EV To Continue Into 2016 – But Only In First Gen Trim

Which led us to an obvious question; what will become of the Spark EV?  Will it be part of the next generation of Spark alongside the petrol car?

Just last week, General Motors President of North America, Alan Batey said that the 82 mile EV would remain in Chevy’s lineup for awhile longer, but we had assumed that the Spark EV would just play out the string until the arrival of GM’s 200 mile Bolt in late 2017.

Have plans already changed with a refreshed Spark coming to dealerships this fall?

Our quick check of internal production schedules at GM showed that the Spark EV was still in production, with the 2016 model reportedly beginning assembly in August, however there was no firm dates for the renewed petrol version of the Spark (full GM release on the ICE version’s refreshed debut below).

Was this just a quirk in the system?  Was the Spark EV really going into next-gen guise?  To the phones!

It turns out two things can be true at the same time.  Much like what is happening at Daimler with the next generation of the smart ForTwo and the current smart ForTwo ED, the new gas version of the Spark will be produced concurrent with the existing Spark EV at separate assembly locations…at least for model year 2016.

Chevrolet Spark EV - Now Available In Maryland This Spring

Chevrolet Spark EV – Now Available In Maryland This Spring

A General Motors’ spokesperson released the following statement to InsideEVs on the status of the Spark EV:

“The Next-Generation Spark to be unveiled during the 2015 New York Auto Show is an all-new vehicle and will only be offered with an internal combustion engine.

The Spark EV will continue on the current generation Spark platform until its already scheduled end of production.  We will not provide any additional details on timing of a replacement at this time.”

Using our OEM-decoder ring, we assume this to mean that the Spark EV will be built out later this year as a 2016 model year vehicle, to the quantities that GM believes will get them relatively close to launching the all-new Chevrolet Bolt.

GM press release on 2016 Chevrolet Spark (ICE) below:

A Spark of Sophistication

2015-2016 Chevy Spark EV - Now Featuring LG Chem Cells And Assembled at GM's Brownstown Battery Plant

2015-2016 Chevy Spark EV – Now Featuring LG Chem Cells And Assembled at GM’s Brownstown Battery Plant

Chevrolet’s redesigned global minicar to debut in Seoul and New York on April 2

The all-new 2016 Spark will debut on April 2 at the Seoul and New York auto shows, Chevrolet announced today.

A sleeker, more aerodynamic profile and a progressive take on Chevrolet’s signature design cues will give the redesigned Spark a more sophisticated aesthetic that reflects the changing tastes of the global minicar market.

“The new Spark’s design has evolved and grown up with the segment,” said Michael Simcoe, GM International vice president of Design. “The youthful whimsy of the original Spark is still in its genes, but it is conveyed in more traditional proportions that reinforce the customer’s refined expectations.”

Chevrolet has sold more than 1.1 million Sparks around the world since it went on sale as the Beat in India in late 2009. Today, the Spark is available in 71 markets worldwide, selling the most in South Korea, followed by the United States and Mexico.

Spark is attracting younger and first-time new car buyers to Chevrolet with 26 percent being under the age of 35, and 35% reporting that Spark was their first new car.

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22 Comments on "Exclusive: New Chevrolet Spark To Debut In NY, Spark EV Not Renewed – But Still Lives On"

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If it’s the same as the leaked pictures from a while ago, this is a serious set back in terms of ugliness. I much prefer the old look.

What is the 0 to 60 time on this little car? I seem to remember it was really quick.?

Around 7.5 seconds. Significantly faster than the combustion Spark.

I hope GM brings the Bolt and 2016 Volt to the New York Auto Show on April 2.

NPNS! SBF!
Volt#671

Looks like they got the color right 🙂

/science

+1

I disagree.

White is a wiser choice for a car, specially if it’s electric…

Because white is more visible, there’s a minor risk of accident. That is a proven statistic, and that’s why ambulances are white or yellow.

Other reason is a white car is a cooler car, better for the life of the batteries.

A white Nissan Leaf and a black one, if all the other variables are the same, I bet that the black one will have the battery more degraded. Owning a black Nissan Leaf in Arizona is just stupid.

Science 🙂

Pfft, everyone knows that black EVs are not only ‘cooler’, but go faster, have a greater range than all other options…and that their owners are all handsome devils, (=

So this is RAV4 EV all over again (sort of). Keep selling compliance numbers of the old body style EV with the new body style sitting on the lot next to it.

GM is just making sure they grab enough credits to satisfy their need before the 2018 CARB ramp up. That is the real urgency behind the Bolt. GM isn’t convinced they can sell 25k – 30k Spark EVs a year.

CARB is working, better at some OEMs than others.

I know at least 2 out of 7 Chevy dealers in the SF Bay Area that sells Volt but refuses to sell Spark EV.

So, CARB can push and so can GM. But if the cars don’t sell and dealers don’t want to sell it, then it won’t sell.

Why do you think Tesla is fighting hard against dealers?

The difference is that GM is replacing it with a 200 mile even better EV, and Toyota killed their EV and replaced it with a fuel cell vehicle.

The difference is that GM is Allegedly replacing it with a 200 mile EV. To date, GM has been a compliance EV producing disappointment.

It’s a bit beyond allegedly at this point. They’ve shown a concept, announced production, and invested $200 million in two factories to build it.

The Spark EV was never announced as a compliance car, but *shrug*. I really do hope GM releases the Bolt in all 50 states and in mass. Time will tell. The past 4 years have comprised of many manufacturers announcements resulting in compliance cars or vaporware … here’s to hope!

Spark EV is at least available outside compliance states such as Canada as Fleet and South Korea, where ERAV4 is NOT avaialable anywhere else.

Now, it looks like Spark EV is about to be available in MD as well.

At least GM is still selling Spark EV’s, unlike the Rav 4 EV.

Oh, and not leasing only and crushing, unlike the Honda Fit EV.

Crushing EV’s was so 90’s. Honda did it, GM did it, Ford did it, Toyota did it… And sadly, Honda is back at it again.

Those 2000 some-odd Fit EV’s would make nice USPS delivery vehicles for southern post offices.

Seems pretty clear – The Spark EV is strictly a limited market compliance car built in its current form only as needed to get the required credits. The EV drive train will not roll forward to the new Spark because there is no need for a compliance car once the longer range production Bolt arrives.

The Spark EV was certainly a better than average first generation compliance car effort, but that’s all it was and should be allowed to rest in peace once the Bolt arrives.

In addition to being a compliance car, it was probably also a ‘guinea pig’ for some components that will be used in the Bolt.

It is interesting that GM decided to bring the Spark EV to Maryland. I think they brought it to MD to be a ‘gateway’ for the Bolt, as dealerships that decide to sell the Spark EV in MD will be more or less already trained up by the time the Bolt comes next year.

They brought it to MD because the state will roll out DCQC, and already had good penetration of J1772. So, GM is well ahead of Toyota, but well behind BMW, and so far a little behind VW.

rip