Spark is the sort of affordable fuel-miser that Washington thinks GM should be selling a lot more of–as the company may be obliged to do under terms of recently granted federal loans. But GM is not playing politics here.
After all, the 2011 Chevrolet Spark was in the works well before the company nearly ran out of cash. And it won’t do anything for domestic employment, as it’s a product of GM Daewoo Auto Technologies in South Korea, which also supplies the Aveo.
On the other hand, the 2011 Chevrolet Spark is a key introduction for GM worldwide. That’s because it’s the redesigned replacement for the Matiz minicar that anchors the Chevy line in Europe and many emerging markets.
GM inherited the Matiz when it formed GMDAT back in 2002 from cherry-picked portions of the old Daewoo Motors.
GMDAT has since become one of two GM centers for global small-car design, engineering and supply.
In the process, it’s helped make Chevrolet a top-selling brand in countries that know nothing of American-market staples like the Malibu and Silverado.