If you weren’t even aware Chevy made an electric Spark — or you weren’t aware of the Spark (which was redesigned into a second generation in 2016) at all — you’re probably not alone. The Spark EV was what the industry calls a “compliance” car, one developed and sold to help its maker reduce its corporate average fuel economy, a measurement that matters more in the US than it does here in Canada. A car that uses no gasoline is very handy for a company like Chevrolet, which makes most of its money on thirsty trucks and SUVs.
In Canada, the Spark EV was available to fleet buyers only until early 2016, making for a pretty short window during which it was offered to the general public; in the US, it was only sold in California, Oregon and Maryland.
It’s a shame it wasn’t made more widely available: its electric drivetrain cranked out 130 hp and 327 lb-ft of torque; even when you factor in the weight of the 20-kWh battery pack, we suspect the electric Spark would have run circles around its gasoline-powered sibling, which used a 1.2L engine making 84 hp and 83 lb-ft.
But that’s moot now that Bolt has stolen Chevrolet’s EV spotlight: its 60-kWh battery feeds the car’s electric drivetrain with 200 hp and 266 lb-ft, and promises as much as 383 km in driving range.
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