Built on General Motors' Delta architecture, the new front-wheel-drive Cobalt comes in sedan and coupe body styles. Six versions are offered. Sedans are available in base, LS and LT trim levels, while coupes are offered in base, LS and SS Supercharged editions. Distinct interiors and wheels help in differentiating the models. Most Cobalts use a 145-horsepower four-cylinder, but a 205-hp supercharged engine goes into the SS Supercharged coupe.
Chevrolet says the Cobalt's electric power steering is "tuned to match the performance levels of the various tire and suspension packages." Equipped with a strut-type front suspension and semi-independent torsion beam rear suspension, Cobalts have a turning circle of 37.4 feet. Front and rear stabilizer bars are installed
Chevrolet press material says the Cobalt coupe has an "elegantly tapered reverse C-pillar leading the eye to Chevrolet's signature four round taillamps." Both body styles feature a horizontally split grille with a gold bowtie badge in the center.
SS Supercharged coupes feature bolder fascias and rocker-panel areas. All models have body-colored door handles and jewellike headlights and taillights. A power sunroof is optional.
Base models have disc brakes in front and drums in the rear, and SS Supercharged coupes stop with all-disc antilock brakes. Built on a 103.3-inch wheelbase, the Cobalt is just over 180 inches long and 67.9 inches wide. Base models ride on 15-inch wheels, and the SS Supercharged coupe is fitted with 18-inch wheels.
Both the coupe and sedan seat five occupants, with front bucket seats and a 60/40-split, folding rear seat. Higher-than-usual seating positions are intended to give sedan occupants a "more commanding view of the road," according to Chevrolet. Occupants can access the trunk area from inside the car.
Standard equipment includes air conditioning, an electric rear defogger, a tilt steering column, a driver information center and a CD player. Heated leather seats, XM Satellite Radio, MP3 playback capability and GM's OnStar communication system are optional. Keyless entry, cruise control, power windows and power mirrors are included in LS, LT and SS Supercharged models.
Under the Hood
Base, LS and LT models use a 2.2-liter four-cylinder that produces 145 hp. A supercharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder in the SS Supercharged coupe develops 205 hp and 200 pounds-feet of torque.
The 2.2-liter engine can team with either a Getrag five-speed-manual gearbox or a four-speed automatic. The SS Supercharged coupe comes only with a five-speed manual.
Antilock brakes are standard on LS, LT and SS Supercharged models. Cobalts with the automatic and ABS also have traction control. Side curtain-type airbags are optional.