2013 Chevrolet Spark

Chevrolet says that when the 2013 Chevrolet Spark goes on sale later this year, it will start at $12,995, including destination charges.

A starting price of less than $13,000 makes the Chevrolet Spark one of the least expensive subcompact cars on the market. It seats four people, and while Chevrolet hasn’t yet released its cargo space, the automaker compares it with the Fiat 500, Smart Fortwo and Scion iQ, none of which are known for having large cargo areas.

In a press release, Chevrolet says that the 2013 Spark will be available in three trim levels, and all will have a standard five-speed manual transmission, though a four-speed automatic will be available on all trims for $925. A 1.2-liter four-cylinder engine is standard and makes 85.2 horsepower. Chevrolet hasn’t released fuel economy predictions for the model.

The base LS Spark comes standard with air conditioning, power windows and an auxiliary input jack, which are average features for the class. It has 10 standard airbags, which is impressive for a car as inexpensive as the Spark, as well as traction control and brake assist. Upgrading to the mid-level 1LT trim, which costs $14,495, adds tech features like a 7-inch touch screen radio, Chevrolet MyLink infotainment system, Bluetooth, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, a USB port and satellite radio. The $15,795 2LT trim gains exterior upgrades, leatherette seats, heated front seats and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.

For some shoppers, the biggest drawback with the 2013 Chevrolet Spark will be its size. Like the Chevrolet Spark, the Fiat 500 and Scion iQ have four seats, while the Smart Fortwo has two. Of these three competitors, the Fiat 500 has the most overall cargo space at 30.1 cubic feet. But with a starting price of about $16,000 the Fiat 500 costs several thousand dollars more than the base Chevrolet Spark.

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