Chevrolet Spark fails to hit 40 MPGs

July 24, 2012 12:00 AM

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has rated the new Chevrolet Spark well below the 40 MPG mark, in news that's likely to make many General Motors executives very unhappy.

The new Spark is the smallest Chevy in history, but industry watchers assumed Chevrolet was trading size for fuel economy in designing the vehicle. With many consumers desiring high MPGs, just about every automaker has models in their lineup that crack the 40 MPG mark, reports Edmunds Inside Line.

Yet the EPA's new ratings for the car say it only gets 32 MPGs in the city and 38 on the highway, for a combined total of 35 MPGs - good, but not great. The numbers are a bit puzzling considering that Chevrolet has a larger car in its lineup, the Chevrolet Sonic, that breaks 40 MPGs on the highway. In fact, the Spark's figures are more in line with the mid-sized Chevrolet Cruze, which also gets 38 MPGs on the highway.

Then again, perhaps the problem isn't unique to Chevy, and pint-sized vehicles don't always translate into better fuel economy. When compared to models like the Smart Fortwo, Scion iQ and Fiat 500, the Spark is right in line with the competition.

Drivers who want to improve their fuel economy don't necessarily need to downsize. Fuel injector cleaning and regular car tune ups can help increase MPGs in their current car.

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