|The Chevrolet Beat. Click to enlarge.|
GM India launched the Chevrolet Beat, the next offering from the 300 series after the Cruze, at a ceremony in India presided over by its President & Managing Director, Karl Slym. Based on GM’s global mini-vehicle architecture, the Beat will be launched in more than 150 markets around the world including those in Europe and North America, where it will be sold as the Spark.
Newly developed for the next-generation global mini, the S-TEC II engine—a 4-cylinder, 16-valve 1199cc DOHC engine—delivers fuel economy of 18.6 km/L (43.8 mpg US, 5.4 L/100km), with peak power of 80.5 PS (79 hp, 59 kW). The Beat in India comes in three trim levels of 1.2, 1.2LS and 1.2LT. In addition, an Option pack is available on the LT variant which consists of ABS, Alloy wheels, Dual Airbags and Seatbelts with Load limiters.
(A lower displacement, 995cc version of the S-TEC engine is featured in the new Matiz Creative launched by GM Daewoo in August. Earlier post.)
The S-TEC II engine features the first-in-segment application of the PDA (Port De-Activation) system to ensure high exhaust gas recirculation, resulting in combustion stability at low speeds and optimal performance at high speeds together with improved fuel efficiency. In addition, the PDA system contributes to a reduction in emissions.
Another first-in-segment application is an automatic temperature controller inside the engine, which helps improve fuel efficiency by reducing unnecessary heat loss. A dome-type long-skirt cylinder block narrows the space between intake valves while the application of four resonators reduces engine noise. Mated with the S-TEC-II engine is a 5-speed manual transmission.
Adopting the body-frame integral (BFI) system, the upper body structure and frame are engineered as a single unit, resulting in better feel of the road along with a heightened sense of firmness and stability, and enhanced connectivity between the driver and vehicle. A McPherson strut front suspension combined with a four-point mounted long engine cradle and a width power reduction spring enhances the solidity of the entire chassis, for improved crash safety and driving performance. A rear compound crank torsion beam incorporates a tubular V-beam for more effective tuning and dynamic performance.
A first-in-segment triple acoustic absorbent structure and special underbody structure prevent noise inflow from outside to reduce noise. Wind noise is minimized through the Beat’s aerodynamic body line and detailed door sealing structure.
A first-in-segment offering of an integrated rear spoiler as standard equipment essentially extends the rear roofline, for enhanced aerodynamic performance and provides a stable stance in high-speed driving as well as increased fuel efficiency, according to GM.
General Motors India began operations in 1996 and now offers products under the Chevrolet brand, which was introduced in India in 2003. Based on the success of the Chevrolet brand, General Motors India registered a record growth of 101% in sales in December 2009, compared to the corresponding period in 2008—8,258 units against 4,041 units. This marked the highest-ever monthly sales figure achieved by GM India since its inception.