• Jun 1, 2009
If General Motors has any real hope of emerging from Chapter 11 as a newly-viable automaker, it's going to need stellar products that will allow it to compete on a level playing field in every segment of the market it plays in. Of course, that's going to include small cars, and the current Chevy Aveo doesn't stand a chance against newer, more desirable models like the Honda Fit, Nissan Versa, and the upcoming Ford Fiesta (not to mention possible Fiat-based small cars from Chrysler). Execs at GM realize this fact just like the rest of us, which is what makes the automaker's recent announcement that it will build a new small car here in the U.S. so interesting.
In a speech to the Automotive Press Association in Detroit last week, Bob Lutz showed off some slides that included references to future GM products, and Todd Lassa from Motor Trend noticed a new model called the Viva. Could this perhaps be the next mainstream small car from Chevrolet? If so, the Viva probably wouldn't be built on an existing Daewoo platform (as is the case with the current Aveo and upcoming Chevy Spark hatchback), and would likely need to be a slightly larger upmarket model if it's going to make any profit being built in the States and sell anywhere near the 160,000 figure that GM bandied about last week. Stay tuned.

[Source: Motor Trend]


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  • 17 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Even today Id take a Vauxhall Viva over a Chevrolet Vega, Ive driven and worked on both.
      • 5 Years Ago
      SEE? I TOLD you all about this news, yet no one seemed to care! (jk)
      Anyway, I sincerely hope it moves off of the old platform. Ideally, it would be mechanically identical to the Opel Corsa, but that's just my hope.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The battle to win hearts and minds in the small car wars is going to be tougher than ever before. What's out there now isn't very much. The Mazda3 is a good car, but it's too small inside to be a good buy for anyone other than students with few close friends. The Aveo looks like a Korean copy of the Honda Fit and the Toyota version is so ugly nobody can recall seeing one. The Versa is made, poorly, from Renault platforms. All of these little cars look like they were rushed to market to fill-in until the companies could design and produce good models. The BMW 330i is what that company produced when German buyers said they wanted big BMW enginering and features in small cars. America needs something in between the 330i and the Fit starting out, at an affordable price. Not barebones mouse-fur seats.
      • 5 Years Ago
      now can we finally put to rest all the accusations that GM has completely stopped product development other than the volt?
      • 5 Years Ago
      The Corsa platform would be a good base for the new small car. With GM retaining 35% stake in Opel, they will have access to Opel platforms.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Good Luck

      GM is going to have one hell of an uphill battle attempting to make a dime off of each one sold. Small cars have poor revenue margins as it is and to that that it will be made in a high cost environment. All the while being desirable and affordable, it just is not adding up to me. I understand they have to say jobs will be made in the US, but this sounds like a very difficult business proposition. We know the folks over at GM struggle with those sorts of things.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Viva was resurrected by Holden for its rebadge of the Chevrolet Lacetti hatchback (Suzuki Reno in the US). The Vauxhall model disappeared 30 years ago, I think it's rather apt to bring it back.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Chevrolet Viva is a Brasil project not a Daewoo platform... In fact is based in a older Corsa (Opel) platform to make another GM Brasil car called Prisma, a small sedan. To see more information look this links: www.autoesporte.com.br, www.quatrorodas.com.br... Is not only one car, but a family with a small or mini SUV too...
      • 5 Years Ago
      It looks like... an Aveo with cow spots.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I may get flamed for saying this, but the proportions are better than I was expecting. Seems a lot more Golf-ish than Aveo-ish. Kinda stubby yet raked back a bit, and it's a bit wider looking than the aveo. Although, I think it may all come down to the surface styling and what's under the hood.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Yeah I was about to say it reminded me of a Volkswagen.
      • 5 Years Ago
      When will all these uneducated blog polluters stop posting their unacurate flow of crap? How about they spend less time fooling around and more time checking the dealerships and finally have a real look at the cars before saying anything for a change!

      "Sometimes" it's good to know what the subject is all about before talking. GM products were bad, and to be truly honest some are still; but it is quickly changing and for the good. Some of the new stuff are great and even among the best in their class. The problem is that so few people know about it or even want to know about it... I don't blame them after so many crap GM served them during so many years...

      After decades of heavy mistakes, wrong decisions, etc... GM is really changing and that's when it got trapped into this silly economic crisis. Although the products have come a long way in the last 7 years (thanks to Bob Lutz); the issues is still their communication and the politics in house. First, you got a PR mentality that barely evolved since the 60's (when they had nothing to do to sell whatever they were building) versus a line-up that is quickly showing its XXIst century's relevance.

      They need to focus on the cars, not the boys that are currently standing in front of them. We buy cars, not these boys... Keeping it objective, do you see any Audi or Honda dudes standing in front of their vehicles for Q&A with the press? Never... They just maintain a pipeline of competitive cars coming, learning from their mistakes and raising the bar at every generation.

      Then, we got to get rid of the good old boys system and all this handicapping politics that still drives every GM departments... They need to be forced to stop that way of favorizing the friends of friends and start making decisions that are good for GM only. Hopefully Chapter 11 will fix that. Back to business please!!! Greedy time is almost over, push the remaining guilty dudes from the past out and let the younger get into it to bring GM back on tracks... The young face of GM is like us, they just need to be in charge...

      Anyway GM is lucky to get a second chance and we surely need to watch out for further mistakes; but I think it is worth having them around not only for the country but to keep releasing exciting cars, that's one thing they do well, they do love cars, we just need the right people steering the ship!! Let's give them a controled good luck!
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