The Model Line-up Of The New Merged GM & Chrysler: Part III - Chevrolet Cars

2009 Chevrolet Aveo $11,965

Why oh why did GM ever buy Daewoo? The Korean automaker had already established a global reputation as the worst quality of any major car manufacturer in the world, and Daewoos were falling apart on every continent on earth except North America. Some wannabe genius at GM figured that they could foist this grotesquery on the unsuspecting North American public, thus the Daewoo Kalos became the Chevrolet Aveo. Even a much needed facelift to give it an oversized Malibu grille didn't help this unsightly little car. Worst of all the new engine for 2009 which is supposed to provide 9% better fuel economy is being reported as a gas hog by its first owners, and actually returning significantly worse MPG than the 2008! However, given that nothing else in the General Motors / Chrysler Corporation lineup has an engine below 2 litres, I reluctantly have to keep this homely sucka.

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2009 Chevrolet Cobalt $15,010

No, it's not a Cobalt. It's a Cavalier. Yes, a Cavalier. We all remember Cavaliers. They are usually seen rusting away on the sides of highways, abandoned by their unemployed owners who are walking to the gas station 5 miles up the road for the third time this week. This car is at least two generations behind in the small car sweepstakes and has absolutely no reason whatsoever to be on sale in 2009.

KILL

2009 Chevrolet Corvette $48,565

In a model lineup that really couldn't be worse even if it was concocted by Ozzy Osborne in his worst ant-snorting delusional high, all of a sudden you come across the Corvette and wonder how such a great car could come out of such a dysfunctional automaker. Although it's way too big and heavy by at least 25%, the bottom line is that for under $50 grand you can buy a car at your local neighborhood dealership that can kick the butt of various Porsches and Ferraris, not only in the straight line drag strip runs, but also on the gymkhanas. What a great sportscar, and possibly the best value for the money of the entire combined automaker's lineup.

KEEP

2009 Chevrolet HHR $18,720

"Hey, Chrysler is selling a lot of PT Cruisers, why don't we make one too?" Well, they ended up not so much making a clone of a PT Cruiser, but an overgrown and butt ugly bulbous version of a half century old Suburban based on leftover parts from the Cobalt bin. That's where the HHR belongs: In the bin.

KILL

2009 Chevrolet Impala $23,045

When even the majority of police departments turned their backs on their bread and butter Impala cruisers, it should have been the hint that the days of this rear drive boat were long gone, but GM insisted on trying to foist this antiquated junkpile on the North American public. Fortunately very few of them were convinced. When was the last time you saw an Impala on the road? There was a time when you couldn't pass a dozen cars without seeing at least one Impala / Caprice. Now, it's more like one in a thousand.

KILL

2009 Chevrolet Malibu $21,605

Although I never bought into the hype that this oversized midsize was a Camry killer, it defintely is the best sedan that GM has produced in many years. The Malibu would make a believer out of me if it went on a bit of a diet and could then handle a 2 litre four cylinder powerplant. I take issue with some of its internal ergonomics, and I really don't like the triple-stacked grille, but given the meagre pickings around the General Motors / Chrysler Corporation dealership floor, the Malibu is most definitely a keeper.

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2009 Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid $25,555

GM's implementation of Hybrid technology is by far the mildest of any major automaker, so we have to take Malibu's Hybridity credentials with a grain of salt the size of the Bonneville Salt Flats. As shown in the case of the Aveo, you can't believe a word of GM's claims for fuel mileage, so this is one Hybrid that is most definitely not worth the extra four grand. However, given that it's a Malibu and thus the only decent sedan in the GM lineup, we'll have to keep it. If for no other reason than to claim that the newly merged General Motors / Chrysler Corporation actually has a Hybrid sedan... of sorts!

KEEP

Continued in Part IV

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