Chevy Spark vs. Prius C At LA Auto Show

Chevy will debut the 2013 Spark this Wednesday at the Los Angeles Auto Show.  While the Spark definitely has some appeal, it will also face steep competition.

The 2013 Spark is designed to appeal to a young city dwelling crowd.  With color options including Salsa, Jalapeno, Denim, Lemonade, and Techno Pink, the obvious rush for the youth market seeps from the vehicles pores.  The interior features Chevrolet MyLink, available in all Sparks with a seven-inch touchscreen. Mylink features Bluetooth phone integration, and Pandora or Stitcher can be piped through your smartphone and directly into Mylink.  Standard air conditioning and power windows, along with a motorcycle-inspired gauge cluster and color coordinated interior do all that they can to attract a tech savvy crowd…and also one that likes bright color coordination.

The big question behind the Chevy Spark, as with many new vehicles, is why?  Why are people going to buy this?  And more importantly for Chevrolet, why are people going to buy this when they could buy the Toyota Prius C?  Sure, the Prius C is a concept vehicle, not yet in full production, but any automotive journalist can tell you that the machines and assembly plants are at the ready.  What are the differences between the Spark and the Prius C?  Well, they look almost identical, except the Prius C looks just a little better.  Also the Prius family is marketed to people who fancy themselves as smart and practical, whereas the Spark has been marketed almost exclusively to a certain type of person under the age of 25 who can afford a new car.  I will leave you to guess which crowd represents a larger share of the new car buying public.

The most important question of course is: “How many miles will I get per gallon?  Surely with the tiny Spark it must be at least comparable to a Prius!?”…Well, no, it isn’t comparable.  The Spark is projected to deliver a combined city/highway mpg of 38, while the Prius C will be delivering a roughly 60 combined mpg.

The price tag is really the only turn where the Spark seems to take a clear lead.  The projected price tag on the 2013 Spark is $11,500 for a base model.  While Toyota has stated that the Prius C will start out under $20k, the difference between $11,500 and $18,500 can mean a lot for a lot of people.

Phoenix Valley auto and tech enthusiasts should seriously consider taking a road trip out to Los Angeles in late November for the LA Auto Show, a popular platform for the worlds leaders in design, engineering, and electronics to debut their most cutting edge concepts and developments.  The Prius C and Chevy Spark will both be on display, and comparison between the two models will be a common point of discussion.

Phoenix Valley auto enthusiasts should also plan on attending the Phoenix Arizona International Auto Show to learn about the most recent concepts and innovations from Chevy, Toyota, and the rest of the auto industry, taking place at the Phoenix Arizona Convention center over Thanksgiving weekend.

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