It’s official; we are in the midst of a new era of small, fast and exciting American cars. The 2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS is the latest example, and Chevrolet announced today that the turbocharged hot hatch will be priced at $20,995 when production begins in October.
That price is for the six-speed manual transmission, but customers can also opt for the six-speed automatic for $22,280. We have a feeling that enthusiasts will opt for the manual with unique gear ratios while buyers just looking for a top-line Sonic will take the auto.
Either way, there’s plenty to play with. The 2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS is powered by an Ectotec 1.4L turbo four-cylinder engine producing 138 horsepower. Acceleration will be aided by 148 lb.-ft of torque that comes on early, at 1,850 rpm in the automatic and 2,500 rpm with the stick shift.
The car will also feature upgrades to help it corner. A stiffened Macpherson suspension joins coil springs and a stabilizer bar to keep the 2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS planted through the twisties. The car has been lowered by 10mm and will be the only Sonic model to feature four-wheel disc brakes with ABS. Feedback will travel from the road to your hands through standard electric power steering with a wear compensator that automatically adjusts the wheel characteristics for precise steering at all times.
Unlike its other Sonic brothers, the 2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS will be available only as a five-door hatchback that proves performance and utility don’t have to be mutually exclusive. With the rear seats folded down, the Sonic RS provides 47.7 cubic feet of cargo space. It also sports an aggressive stance with new designs for the front and rear fascia, vertical intakes that house fog lamps, unique spoiler and rockers and 17” five-spoke alloy wheels.
On the inside, aluminum sport pedals bring the fun while a full selection of Pandora and smartphone compatibilities pack the luxury. Chevrolet says that their BringGo entertainment system with real-time navigation will be available later in the year.
Fuel economy numbers are not yet available but we will report when Chevrolet has confirmed them. The turbocharged four-cylinder engine features direct injection and variable valve timing, so we are expecting impressive efficiency. The 2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS will be available later this year.