REVIEW: 2013 CHEVY SONIC RS

Chevy introduced the Sonic RS at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show as a hot hatchback that takes the already fun Sonic to the next level with sportier aesthetics inside and out.

Our Sonic RS in Victory Red rang in at $20,995 with no additional options, and after a week with it, we were struggling to hand the keys back. Sportier, Inside and Out The Sonic made a big impact on Chevy’s street cred in the compact segment. Replacing the dated and lackluster Aveo, the Sonic made a name for itself among the crowd, providing versatility, style, a high fun factor and impressive fuel efficiency. The Sonic RS takes that winning foundation and makes it even better. The front end is more dramatic with a deep air dam that does a great job of enhancing the Sonic’s road-hugging stance. Vertical intakes at the edges of the fascia reinforce the wide, low proportions and house the redesigned fog lamps. Also exclusive to the RS are a unique rear fascia, rear spoiler, rocker moldings, a shiny exhaust outlet and unique 17″ alloys. Under the hood remains our favorite four-cylinder engine of all time, the turbo 1.4-liter which can be mated to a 6-speed auto or manual, our RS model having the manual with revised final-drive ratios. Engagement was smooth, the clutch was light and we actually felt comfortable doing the clutch-accelerator dance in morning and evening traffic. The Sonic was definitely designed with the manual transmission drivers in mind. The lowered and stiffened suspension with performance-tuned dampers exclusive to RS did their magic on winding roads and we felt completely secure in a hatchback measuring only 159″ long. Inside, a Jet Black interior made up of leather with suede microfiber inserts and red RS accents is exclusive to RS. The design of the sporty three-spoke, leather-wrapped steering wheel with contrasting stitching and racing-inspired flat-bottom design looked like something out of a car costing three times as much. The same goes for the leather-wrapped shift knob with red stitching, aluminum sport pedals, and RS-specific instrument panel cluster graphics. Chevy’s MyLink system is standard on the RS, which brings with it BringGO navigation, TuneIn radio and a very cool user interface, though we’d prefer real buttons over the touch-sensitive volume and power buttons. Siri Eyes Free is standard and worked OK, but like any voice recognition system, inputs to the system suffer when road noise, passengers talking and placement of the microphone location aren’t perfect. TheCD’s Take Combine youthful design with fuel efficiency, a spirited driving experience and unexpected features, and magical things happen. The Sonic meets all the requirements in our book, and it shows with Sonic sales continuing to climb. The 2013 Sonic RS kicks it up a notch and we can guarantee it’ll leave you smiling too.
2013 Chevy Sonic RS Photo Gallery

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