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2007 Chevrolet Aveo

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$696 — $6,668 USED
16
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Hatchback
5 Seats
32 MPG
(Combined)
Key specs of the base trim
 — 
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Overview

Is this the car for you?

The Good

  • Standard 100,000-mile warranty
  • Unmistakable Chevy styling
  • Upscale interior (Aveo LT)
  • Front and rear visibility

The Bad

  • No longer bargain-priced
  • Uncomfortable seats
  • No side curtain airbags
  • Some cheap controls
  • Gas mileage not as high as competitors

What to Know

about the 2007 Chevrolet Aveo
  • Restyled for 2007
  • Larger dimensions
  • Standard side-impact airbags
  • Available premium options

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Our Take

from the Cars.com expert editorial team

Watch MotorWeek on PBS. Check your local listings for time and channel.

By Kelsey Mays

GM brought the Korean-built Chevy Aveo stateside for the 2004 model year, and a restyled Chevrolet Aveo sedan is available for 2007. Despite its friendly face and upmarket frills, I found the new Chevrolet Aveo short on drivability, comfort and — most importantly — overall value.


Thanks to the recent jump in gas prices, small sedans and hatchbacks priced from $10,000 to $15,000 have seen their popularity soar. Honda, Toyota and Nissan already are in this segment, but U.S. automakers have lagged. Ford and Chrysler have hinted at future contenders, but GM is currently the only Detroit automaker with an entry-level car.

Chevrolet also markets a companion five-door hatchback, now called the Aveo5. The 2007 Aveo5 model is carried over from last year's design, but this review focuses on the sedan.

The 
Chevrolet Aveo comes in basic LS and well-equipped LT trim levels, both available with a manual or an automatic transmission. Last year's sub-$10,000 Special Value sedan is gone, and the least expensive Aveo now starts around $12,000. I drove an automatic-equipped Aveo LT.

 

Exterior & Styling
While the previous car sported styling by Italdesign-Giugiaro, the 2007 Chevy Aveo comes from GM's in-house mold. From a distance, its large headlights and cross-bar grille could be mistaken for a Chevy Cobalt, and the chrome-striped rear looks like a shrunken Malibu with Ford Fusion taillights. It's a clean, reasonably fresh design, but it's not as distinctive ...

GM brought the Korean-built Chevy Aveo stateside for the 2004 model year, and a restyled Chevrolet Aveo sedan is available for 2007. Despite its friendly face and upmarket frills, I found the new Chevrolet Aveo short on drivability, comfort and — most importantly — overall value.


Thanks to the recent jump in gas prices, small sedans and hatchbacks priced from $10,000 to $15,000 have seen their popularity soar. Honda, Toyota and Nissan already are in this segment, but U.S. automakers have lagged. Ford and Chrysler have hinted at future contenders, but GM is currently the only Detroit automaker with an entry-level car.

Chevrolet also markets a companion five-door hatchback, now called the Aveo5. The 2007 Aveo5 model is carried over from last year's design, but this review focuses on the sedan.

The 
Chevrolet Aveo comes in basic LS and well-equipped LT trim levels, both available with a manual or an automatic transmission. Last year's sub-$10,000 Special Value sedan is gone, and the least expensive Aveo now starts around $12,000. I drove an automatic-equipped Aveo LT.

 

Exterior & Styling
While the previous car sported styling by Italdesign-Giugiaro, the 2007 Chevy Aveo comes from GM's in-house mold. From a distance, its large headlights and cross-bar grille could be mistaken for a Chevy Cobalt, and the chrome-striped rear looks like a shrunken Malibu with Ford Fusion taillights. It's a clean, reasonably fresh design, but it's not as distinctive as before.

Riding on a 97.6-inch wheelbase, the Chevy Aveo is about 170 inches long — three inches longer than its predecessor. Width and height increase 1.6 and 0.4 inches, respectively. Here's how the Aveo stacks up against competing four-doors:

Small Sedans Compared
  2007 Chevrolet Aveo 2007 Nissan Versa* 2007 Toyota Yaris 2007 Hyundai Accent 2006 Kia Rio
Length (in.) 169.7 176.0 169.3 168.5 166.9
Width (in.) 67.3 66.7 66.5 66.7 66.7
Height (in.) 59.2 60.4 56.7 57.9 57.9
Trunk volume (cu. ft.) 12.4 13.8 12.9 12.4 11.9
Cabin volume (cu. ft.) 90.7 94.3 87.1 92.2 92.2
EPA gas mileage (city/hwy, mpg)** 26/34 30/36 34/39 28/37 29/38
Price range*** $11,950 to $16,545 n/a $11,925 to $17,130 $12,565 to $14,915 $10,770 to $14,880
Manufacturer data
*Versa sedan not available until January 2007.
**With automatic transmission.
***Range measures base price to approximate fully optioned model, excluding destination charge.

 

Shoppers might also consider an entry-level hatchback. All the Chevy Aveo competitors above include a hatchback variant, and others— like the Honda Fit and Suzuki Reno — come only as hatchbacks.

 

Ride & Handling
Like many of its competitors, the Aveo has an independent front suspension and semi-independent rear. The front setup has a stabilizer bar. Chevrolet says the suspension has been tuned for sportier handling, with tighter damping in the front shock absorbers. Fourteen-inch steel wheels and tires are standard, while fifteen-inch alloy wheels and tires are optional. Even with the latter, I wouldn't call the ride sporty — it's rather noisy, and there is still pronounced body roll in hard corners.

Steering feedback is moderate, and turn-in is unimpressive. At low speeds, the steering wheel offers rather low assist, requiring noticeably more effort in parking lots and neighborhoods than the larger Chevrolet Cobalt.

Going & Stopping
Drivetrains have been carried over from the 2006 models, which means all Chevrolet Aveos pack a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine. It generates 103 horsepower at 5,800 rpm and 107 pounds-feet of torque at 3,400 rpm, and it pairs with either a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission. Accelerator response is immediate, keeping the Chevy Aveo from feeling underpowered around town. Pushed hard, the engine sounds harsh and buzzy, especially as revs ascend. (The Honda Fit proves that not every flyweight engine need exhibit these characteristics.)


The automatic transmission shifts smoothly at lower speeds, but on the highway it fights to stay in fourth gear, resisting kickdown far too long. A Hold button near the gearshift drops the transmission down to third, and it's often the easiest way to get better passing performance. The Hold button can also restrict the vehicle to second or first gear.

Front disc and rear drum brakes are standard, and ABS is optional; four-wheel-disc brakes aren't available. I found the pedal to lack linearity, feeling mushy at first and grabby midway through.

The Inside
Despite its small exterior dimensions, the Chevrolet Aveo's cabin has an open feel to it. A high seating position and broad windshield make for a good view out front, while the large rear window and short backseat headrests maximize rear visibility. I'm 5 feet, 11 inches tall, and I found enough headroom plus an inch left over when I adjusted the driver's seat to maximum height. (Sun lovers, beware: Moonroofs often rob around an inch of headroom, and my car did not include the optional one.)


My test vehicle came with imitation leather seats, simulated wood trim and metallic accents, clearly an effort to move the Chevy Aveo upscale. In many places, it succeeds. The wood-grain pieces aren't too shiny, and the two-tone dashboard is textured to avoid the cheap plastic look of an entry-level vehicle. Flush-fitted stereo controls and chrome-ringed air vents add a premium touch.

It doesn't take long, though, for the Chevy Aveo's economy roots to emerge. The front seatbacks are narrow and thinly padded, and I couldn't find a comfortable position all week. Wafer-like sun visors snap cheaply into the headliner, itself a rough surface. And even with all the options boxes checked, there's no power door lock switch — instead, the driver's lock directs the other three with an electromechanical chirp that's sure to annoy passengers.

The backs of the front seats are soft, offering the equivalent of knee cutouts for increased backseat legroom. As is the case in most small sedans, headroom in back is tight. Outboard positions have ample lateral room, though there's no middle armrest. A modest center hump intrudes on the center passenger's foot room. Curiously, the center backrest has the most padding of all three positions — an unlikely benefit of not having a center armrest. The outboard seats are still more comfortable, but the center seat is better than most.

Cabin storage is better suited for smaller items. There is no center console container, and the door pockets aren't particularly large. The glove box is about the size I expect for a compact car.

The interior is reasonably quiet in stop-and-go traffic. Engine noise at highway speeds remains low, but wind and road noise do not.

Safety
Led by Korean automakers, the entry-level segment has become increasingly well-equipped, frequently including a comprehensive list of safety features. Here's how the Aveo compares:

Safety Comparison
  2007 Aveo 2007 Versa 2007 Yaris 2007 Accent 2006 Rio
Side-impact airbags Standard Standard Optional Standard Standard
Side curtain airbags n/a Standard Optional Standard Standard
ABS Optional Optional Optional Optional Optional
All-disc brakes n/a n/a n/a Optional Optional
Head restraints/total seats 4/5 4/5 5/5 5/5 4/5
Manufacturer data; applies to sedan body style for each vehicle.

 

Although the Chevy Aveo's side-impact airbags extend upward to protect front occupants' heads, they don't afford rear occupants the protection side curtain airbags do. Optional antilock brakes cost $400, substantially more than ABS in the Versa ($250) or Yaris ($300). (Both Hyundai and Kia bundle ABS into pricier option packages.)

The Chevy Aveo includes head restraints for front and outboard rear passengers. Front restraints can be tilted forward, a feature that could mitigate whiplash if used properly. The rear restraints adjusted high enough to protect my noggin, but there's no center one.

Child-seat provisions include two lower child-seat anchors in each outboard rear seat. On the backseat shelf, all three positions have clearly marked top tethers.

As of this writing, neither the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety nor the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has crash tested the 2007 
Chevrolet Aveo.

 

Cargo
The Chevy Aveo's trunk holds 12.4 cubic feet of cargo, 7 percent more than the 2006 Aveo's. The dimensions are comparable to most small sedans; the Nissan Versa is a notable exception, with a trunk that holds nearly 14 cubic feet. A standard 60/40-split, folding rear seat accommodates longer items, though there's a substantial step up between the trunk floor and the folded seatbacks.

Features
Last year, the Aveo was a steal at just $9,350 for the Special Value sedan. For 2007, the Special Value isn't offered, so buyers will have to shell out $11,950 for the Chevrolet Aveo LS. (For buyers willing to live with the previous design, the Aveo5 hatchback still comes in Special Value trim.)


The extra $2,600 adds air conditioning, floormats, driver's seat lumbar adjustment and an iPod/MP3-player-compatible stereo. Updated sheet metal notwithstanding, I'm not sure it's worth the extra scratch.

For around $13,500, the 
Chevrolet Aveo LT adds power accessories and remote entry, cruise control, a CD player and alloy wheels and tires. Fog lamps, ABS and a moonroof are optional, as are some uncommon items for a car in this class — faux leather seats, steering-wheel audio controls and a six-CD changer. A fully loaded Chevy Aveo costs about $16,500.

Aveo in the Market
In the entry-level segment, there's a lot that keeps the Aveo from being truly competitive. With the loss of the Special Value trim, it's no longer a bargain, and given the drivetrain similarities, the extra features don't justify the new price. Crucial safety items like side curtain airbags are missing. While some interior elements look surprisingly upscale, the driving experience leaves no question this is an economy vehicle. Worse yet, gas mileage is beat by all major competitors — and some of them feel noticeably quicker.

Take away the nifty options and new styling, and the hevy Aveo has improved little from the first-generation car. The competition, meanwhile, has improved and grown a great deal. For $12,000 — or more, if shiny wheels or power windows strike your fancy — there are better alternatives.

Send Kelsey an email  

 

Consumer Reviews

What drivers are saying

3.6
48 reviews — Read All reviews
Exterior Styling
(3.7)
Performance
(3.3)
Interior Design
(3.7)
Comfort
(3.8)
Reliability
(3.4)
Value For The Money
(3.7)

Read reviews that mention:

(5.0)

This car was good on gas and affordable

by Ronnie from Winter Garden, Fl on December 13, 2017

This car was good on gas, reliable and convenient. I had to for quite sometime and I never had an issue with it besides the regular maintenance. Great value for my money. Read full review

(3.0)

Cute but unreliable

by Nikkij2 from CA on December 11, 2017

I had this car for 4 years and everything that could go out on it did. I'm talking radiator, alternator, head gasket, serpentine belt, AC twice, battery twice....not reliable and cost me a lot to ... Read full review

Safety

Recalls and crash tests

Recalls

The 2007 Chevrolet Aveo currently has 2 recalls


Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2007 Chevrolet Aveo has not been tested.

Latest 2007 Aveo Stories

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Aveo received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker

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