Ready to add a new measure of style and sport to the existing lineup, the new 2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS makes its debut in Detroit and will go on sale here late in 2012. With more visual edge, additional dynamic enhancements and a standard Chevrolet MyLink infotainment system, this five-door-only super Sonic variant should find favor with younger and more budget-conscious buyers who still demand that their daily driver packs a full measure of fun and function.
Sharing much of the aggressive exterior styling seen in the original Chevrolet Aveo RS Concept that made its appearance at the 2010 Detroit Auto Show, the new 2013 Sonic RS production model retains the same bolder front fascia treatment with a unique grille configuration and fog lamp design. Special sculpted rocker moldings and mirror caps set off by a 17-inch wheel/tire package that features distinctive five-spoke alloys add more presence to its profile, which takes on an even more aggressive character thanks to a sport-tuned suspension that lowers the car's ride height and brings stiffer springs and shock absorbers. Completing the Sonic RS look is a recast rear fascia, new hatch spoiler and chrome outlet tips.
Motivation for the Sonic RS comes from the same 138-horsepower/1.4-liter turbocharged Ecotec four that's optional in the existing LS/LT/LTZ models. It can be backed by either the standard six-speed manual transmission or the optional six-speed automatic; however, recalibrated ratios in the former and a deeper final drive ratio with the latter ensure that either version of the Sonic RS feels more responsive than its lesser siblings. A bespoke exhaust system adds a bit more aural excitement to the mix and four-wheel disc brakes replace the disc/drum setup used on other Sonic models to enhance stopping power on the RS.
The 2012 Detroit Auto Show is shaping up to be the best in years See the cars
The performance theme carries over to the interior of the new 2013 Chevy Sonic RS, highlighted by more deeply bolstered front sport seats, a thick-rimmed flat-bottom steering wheel and an aluminum pedal set. Rounding out the visual mix are RS-specific color/trim elements and unique instrument panel graphics. While all Sonic models come with OnStar connectivity and six months of Turn-by-Turn navigation, the RS is the only one to offer the Chevrolet MyLink infotainment system with a 7-inch color touch screen radio as standard. The package allows users to easily import their personal music libraries, use the Bluetooth connectivity and smartphones to access Pandora and Stitcher Internet Radio as well as to display navigation directions.
Pricing for the new 2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS is expected to be released closer to its on-sale date.