Chevrolet Trax Sales Soar At The Expense Of Chevrolet Sonic19
It’s no secret the crossover and utility vehicle market has been in a boom. Cheap gas and the fact most crossovers return similar fuel economy numbers to their sedan counterparts mean certain nameplates have gone unloved.
That’s the case with the Chevrolet Trax and Chevrolet Sonic. Automotive News reports the Trax subcompact crossover has seen enormous success since its introduction for the 2014 model year. However, that success comes at the expense of the Sonic; the subcompact sedan and hatch have seen their sales plummet since the Trax’s introduction.
Chevy Sonic sales boomed in 2014 with 93,518 units sold. That same year, the Trax was introduced, and it has eroded the Sonic’s sales down to 55,255 in 2016. The Sonic has sold a measly 11,408 units year to date in 2017.
For GM, there are pros and cons. Lagging sales of the Sonic means inventories are mounting in certain areas. On the flip side, the Trax commands much higher prices than the Sonic. According to Kelley Blue Book data, buyers pay $5,100 more for a Trax than a Sonic. The Trax also commands $1,500 more than a comparable Chevrolet Cruze sedan.
GM isn’t giving up on the segment, though. President Alan Batey said cars like the Sonic help Chevrolet cover all segments and may help the automaker, in the long run, should CUVs and trucks become unpopular with a gasoline price spike.
“You always have to make sure you’re protected against an external environment that no one can predict,” Batey said.
“No one predicted when we were at $4 that we’d be down at $2. You’ve got to have a portfolio of products that really provide you the bandwidth that you need.”
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To me thus is good news as I have always disliked the styling of the Sonic. It looks way too much like its Aisian competitors. I hope a restyle is in the works. O
Utility is the name of the game these days, and most buyers are looking for more of that, unfortunately for the smaller market. But I sure would like to see the Sonic continue on.
I would like to see a return twords the calvalier dimensions, lower, wider and much more aerodynamic. Calvaliers were great economy cars back in the day and the sport editions looked sleek and really moved! Everyone is looking for cars that are easy to parallel park these days, and the result is essentially a micro minivan (since when did a minivan ever look good) I really hope the next gen sonic goes sleek and offers a 2.0turbo ss édition convertible. That would be a riot!
I’ve owned 4 Cavaliers, 3 of which were Z24s that I bought brand new(’96, ’98, ’02, -all manual trans), and I agree completely. A nice little economy car with a little performance, at an affordable price! Reprogram the PCM and they were good for 130. I loved them, and haven’t bought a Chevy econo box since.
It’s not even about money.. as the 2017 Chevrolet Trax has a starting price of over $21K making it $4K more expensive than the Chevy Sonic as people want CUVs as this is the only explanation for the Sonic’s 11,408 units year to date in 2017 sales while the Trax since the start of the year has sold 31,044 units; Chevy should increase production of the Trax to include either a hybrid or diesel variant.
Hmm. There’s a few logic flaws —
1. How do you know car B robbed sales of car A? How do you know it wasn’t car A’s competitors? Or that car B’s competitors didn’t steal car A’s business?
2. Trax is a CUV which will be fairly immune to gas spikes. You’re thinking SUVs.
I agree with John here.
What doesn’t seem to be reported here is that the Cruze and Spark both have had sales increases at the same time as the decline in the Sonic sales. Each of those being adjacently sized also have siphoned off sales along with the Trax. Throw in the new sales of the Bolt and there is additional crowding of overlapping markets. Given the Sonic is the oldest of the Cruze, Spark and Bolt and Trax, it’s possible that all four are to blame.
Also, considering the Sonic mid-cycle facelift hasn’t led to increased sales, I’d say it isn’t being well received either. I know that many on the Sonic owners forum have not been impressed with the taming down of the design. Plus as a 2015 Sonic owner myself, part of the reason I chose it was due to its distinctive look. With the more corporate styling, there is no longer anything to justify it over a Cruze (now with Hatch) or a Spark, depending on your needs.
Finally, given the big price jump to a Trax, I doubt it had a significant impact on the lower sales of the Sonic. Platform sharing aside, this market is driven by price, and people who able to pay extra for the higher ride and AWD available on the Trax, weren’t going to consider a Sonic anyway.
I own a trax and an equinox. I like both vehicles. I was a bit disappointed to hear that the dimensions of th 18 equinox are smaller.
Funny thing is, the Sonic and Trax are 95% the same vehicle. People are paying more mostly for a slightly raised ride height, and maybe AWD. Most people don’t need either.
Actually, I live in NH and paid 18k for my 2016 Trax. I needed both the extra room and the AWD to deal with New England weather.
That’s the thing, there isn’t extra room. Extra ride height/clearance yes, but the interior space is the same, because the Trax is a lifted Sonic with slightly different styling. Interior/cargo space is the same in both. Still, since they don’t offer AWD on the Sonic, it’s a clear choice for those who really do need it.
The Trax is much larger than a Sonic Hatch (I have both) the Trax also has a high seating position that makes you feel like you’re in a larger SUV than you really are. The drive on my Trax AWD is also more compliant with rode imperfections than the Sonic. I won’t even go into the differences with my new Spark Activ.
I do feel like I would still probably get a Sonic before a Trax. Not because all those things aren’t true. I just would rather have the extra fuel mileage and fun in the Sonic. And I do like the Sonic’s new look slightly better than the Trax’s. Sometimes I really miss my Sonic.
My Trax is the previous generation (Sonic is a 2014, Trax is a 2016) Interior/gauges are identical. Mileage is almost interchangeable and that’s because my Trax is an AWD model. It’s usually around 25-27 mpg combined. My Sonic 2LT has a 1.8 vs the 1.4 turbo. That being said, the Sonic IS a fun car to drive.
My Sonic was a turbo with sport suspension. I loved it. I just wanted the Impala I traded it in for more. But I’ve often thought that if I were going to order another brand new car, it’d probably be another Sonic.
Mine was a turbo. I ordered it with a lowered suspension — a questionable choice in my bouncy, worn out, rough rural area, but a ton of fun to have! I loved it. I wanted the Impala I traded it for more, but I’ve often thought that if I were going to order another brand new car, it would be another Sonic. It was a special experience, even if a short lived one.
I love my 2013 chevy sonic sedan i took it to Raliegh N.c i got 52.4 mpg i will not go to an suv my next car will be a sonic new or used.
Go back to school and learn english.
I liked my 2016 Sonic quite a lot. Just not as much as my Impala that I traded it for. I probably wouldn’t get it over the Cruze that I have now, but that’s only because the Cruze offers more room and style, and returns more fuel economy. If I were shopping for a subcompact specifically, though, I would buy the Sonic before any other competitor in a heart beat, including the faceliffed model. It’s a good little car.
But still… If the Trax ever figures out its powertrain problems, it’ll be basically a win-win on every front. A more powerful engine with the GM-favorites (and successes) of direct injection and variable valve timing would make the Trax such a deal, it would be borederline impossible to pass up. It wears its own facelift well, especially on the inside, and if a new generation of it ever adds the switchable all-wheel-drive and additional power, it’s pretty much a steal.
As it is, a little self-restraint in driving gets good gas mileage with decent style and usefulness. GM used to get by only through its affinity for downright honest-to-goodness cars. The Trax is among its more recent models to show that. Not exactly hard to see why it’s taken off so much.