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L.A. Auto Show preview: Chevy to launch all-electric Spark

November 15, 2012|By David Undercoffler
  • Chevrolet will use the 2012 L.A. Auto Show to debut the Spark EV microcar.
Chevrolet will use the 2012 L.A. Auto Show to debut the Spark EV microcar. (General Motors )

Fresh off of launching the Spark (sub) sub-compact car this past summer, Chevrolet has revealed details on the all-electric version the company will be debuting at the 2012 L.A. Auto Show.

Chevrolet says the Spark EV will have 130 horsepower (100 kW) coming from an oil-cooled electric motor, a hearty jump from the 84 horsepower in the gas-powered car. Meanwhile, torque skyrockets to 400 pound-feet (better than a new Porsche 911), which Chevy says helps move this car from 0-60 in less than eight seconds.

This power comes from a 20 kWh hour lithium-ion battery, which will be covered by an eight-year, 100,000-mile warranty. The battery is made by A123 Systems, a company that recently filed for bankruptcy, and provides batteries to Fisker for use in its Karma plug-in hybrid car.

Photos: First drive of Chevy's tiny Spark

Though Chevy didn't reveal the Spark EVs range, it did say it would be among the best in its class, rivaling competitors like the Fiat 500 EV, Mitsubishi i, Scion iQ EV and the Mini Cooper EV.

Chevy says owners will be able to recharge the batteries to 80% capacity in about 20 minutes by using DC fast charging. The car will also charge in under seven hours via a 240V outlet and a standard 120V charge cord is standard.

Owners will be able to keep track of the car's charging via a smartphone app that works in conjunction with OnStar.

The car will be available for sale or lease in California in summer 2013, with Chevy to announce other U.S. markets in the near future.

Stay tuned right here on Highway 1 for full coverage of the Nov. 28 and 29 press days at the 2012 L.A. Auto Show. The show will be open to the public from Nov. 30 through Dec. 9.


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