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8.9

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 8.7
Performance: 7.8
Interior: 7.9
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.2
Safety: 9.2
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2014 Chevrolet Sonic Review

Agile handling and a roomy interior help make the 2014 Chevrolet Sonic one of the top used subcompact cars on the market. It also has one of the best safety scores in the class.

Pros & Cons

  • Spacious cabin and trunk
  • Sharp handling
  • Poor fuel economy with base engine

New for 2014

 

  • Available rearview camera, forward collision warning, lane departure warning

 

2014 Chevrolet Sonic Overview

Is the 2014 Chevrolet Sonic a Good Used Car?

The 2014 Chevy Sonic is a good used car. Available as either a hatchback or sedan, it has a spacious and nicely designed interior – though it is full of hard plastics. The base engine is underpowered for highway use, but the available turbocharged engine has more zip for a better driving experience.

Used 2014 Chevrolet Sonic Performance and Interior

The base 2014 Chevrolet Sonic has a 138-horsepower four-cylinder engine that is adequate around town but struggles on the highway. It comes standard with a five-speed manual transmission. The available turbocharged engine has the same horsepower, but a lot more torque for better acceleration. Both engines are available with a six-speed automatic transmission in some models. The Sonic’s combination of a comfortable ride, accurate steering, and athletic handling makes it fun to drive. The base engine has an EPA rating of 26 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway, which is low for a subcompact car. The turbocharged engine with the six-speed manual returns 28/38 mpg city/highway. The turbo’s better fuel economy and acceleration make it a better choice, even for the higher price.

Read more about Sonic performance »

The 2014 Chevy Sonic, like many subcompact cars, has a hard-plastic interior. It seats five on standard cloth upholstery. Leatherette and heated seats are available. The rear seats are roomy for a subcompact car, offering good head- and legroom. The Sonic has complete sets of LATCH child-seat connectors on the rear outboard seats. There is a middle-seat tether anchor.

The base Chevrolet Sonic is not heavily outfitted. Its standard features include Bluetooth and OnStar. A USB port and Chevy’s MyLink infotainment system, which includes a 7-inch touch screen, are available. Cargo space is very good. The Sonic sedan has 14.9 cubic feet of trunk space, while the hatchback has 19 cubic feet behind the rear seats and 47.7 cubic feet with the rear seats folded.

Read more about Sonic interior »

Used 2014 Chevrolet Sonic Prices

The price of a used 2014 Chevrolet Sonic ranges from about $8,000 for the LS trim with a manual transmission to around $12,100 for the RS trim with an automatic. Prices vary depending on the vehicle's condition, mileage, features, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

We Did the Research for You: 78 Reviews Analyzed

Our used car rankings and reviews are not based on our own opinions. Instead, we collect information like safety and reliability reports, total costs of ownership, and the views of the automotive press to help you make a buying decision.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking cars, trucks, and SUVs for a decade, and our Best Cars team has more than 75 years of combined experience in the automotive industry. To ensure our impartiality, we don’t accept expensive gifts or trips from carmakers or dealers, and an outside team handles our site’s advertising.

How Reliable Is the 2014 Chevrolet Sonic?

The 2014 Chevrolet Sonic has a reliability rating of three out of five from J.D. Power, which is average for both the industry and the subcompact car class.

Read more about Sonic reliability »

How Safe Is the Sonic?

The 2014 Sonic has one of the higher safety scores in our rankings. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration awarded the 2014 Sonic a perfect score of five in all but one test (it earned four stars in the rollover evaluation). The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the Sonic sedan the top rating of Good in all tests but the small overlap front crash, in which it earned the second-lowest score of Marginal.

The Sonic has no standard active safety features, but available equipment includes a rearview camera, forward collision warning, and lane departure warning. All are uncommon among 2014 subcompacts.

See Sonic safety scores »

Should I Consider Another Used Sonic?

The 2014 Chevrolet Sonic represents the third year of the car’s first generation, which began with the 2012 Sonic. You might save money with a 2013 Sonic, but it would lack important available active safety equipment like forward collision warning and a rearview camera.

Compare the 2012, 2013, and 2014 Sonic »

Which Used Chevrolet Sonic Is Right for Me?

The 2014 Chevrolet Sonic is available in four trims: LS, LT, LTZ, and RS. The LS has minimal features; its standout items include Bluetooth and steering wheel-mounted controls for audio and phone. The LT features a six-speaker audio system with a USB port, satellite radio, and power windows. The LTZ has leatherette seating surfaces, Chevrolet MyLink radio with a 7-inch touch screen, Siri Eye’s Free, and voice recognition. It also has a standard rearview camera. The RS trim adds performance touches like aluminum pedals, a unique front end, and a sports suspension. The RS trim makes the most sense because its turbocharged engine provides versatile power combined with the LTZ’s upscale features.

Even with the Sonic’s average reliability, you might want to consider a certified pre-owned model. For all of its certified pre-owned vehicles, Chevy extends the original new-car powertrain warranty to six years or 100,000 miles and provides a one-year/12,000-mile bumper-to-bumper limited warranty. Chevrolet CPO vehicles must pass a 172-point inspection. Additional benefits like towing and roadside assistance may be available, so read Chevy’s warranty page carefully.

Read more about certified pre-owned vehicles »

Read more about the Chevrolet certified pre-owned program »

2014 Chevrolet Sonic and Other Cars to Consider

Which Is Better: 2014 Chevrolet Sonic or 2014 Ford Fiesta?

Like the Sonic, the 2014 Ford Fiesta is offered as a sedan and hatchback and has a nicely designed interior. The Fiesta has higher-quality cabin materials but less cargo space, as well as athletic handling. However, the Fiesta’s luxury and performance can’t stand up against its lowest-possible reliability rating. The Sonic’s better dependability makes it the better choice.

Which Is Better: 2014 Chevrolet Sonic or 2014 Kia Rio?

The 2014 Kia Rio is also available as a sedan or hatchback. Both the Kia and the Chevy have similar horsepower and handling, but the Rio’s interior has a nicer design. Its hatchback has slightly more cargo space than the Sonic hatchback, but the Sonic sedan offers a larger trunk than the Rio sedan. The Sonic gets the edge for its higher safety score.

Compare the Sonic, Fiesta, and Rio »

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