The all-new Spark
HOLDEN has come up with something completely different with its all-new Spark, a small car that is fun and funky in every respect from its appearance to its performance.
Looking at the Spark you would be forgiven for thinking that a Television reality programme had taken a typical small car and given it one of those makeovers that made it completely different — the classic ugly duckling to a swan.
Let’s start with the look. The Spark has real style, with a sleek roofline, 15 inch alloys and clever design features such as the way the door handles on the rear door are placed high up, giving it the look of a sporty two-door vehicle when it actually has four doors.
Another major call was to use a 1.4 litre engine when many other vehicles in this sector run on 1.2 litres.
That gives the Spark maximum power of 73kW at 4400 rpm, plenty of acceleration in the city and enough for a comfortable road trip on the open highway.
There are two variants in the Spark range, the entry level LS that sells for $16,490 and the LT that goes for $19,990.
The LS offers the choice of a manual or automatic transmission, while the LT has a five-speed automatic that, along with invisible gear changes, manages an impressive low fuel consumption of 5.5 litres/100kms.
Don’t worry about safety. This is a five star-rated vehicle with front and side impact airbags as well as seat belt pretensioners, crumple zones, a passenger safety cell, daytime running lights and child safety anchors.
That is matched by a full catalogue of anti-lock brakes, electronic stability control and traction control.
The LT goes to an even higher level with a rear view camera and rear park assist, front fog lamps and both variants have daytime running lights.
It is inside the Spark however that you realise that the new age of technology has been completely adopted by Holden with the MyLink technology.
This syncs with a smartphone, using either Apple CarPlay or Android Auto functionality displayed on the seven-inch touch screen to control things like GPS satellite navigation as well as the Hey Siri voice recognition programme for hands-free texts and emails.
It is fascinating to sit there and effortlessly send an email or get directions to wherever you want to go as well have access to programmes like Spotify and Pandora.
The jet black leather interior and leather-wrapped steering wheel of the LT round things off, while the standard red arrow indicators for speedometer and fuel usage are something different.
All the trimmings, all the goodies and all the looks — the Holden Spark can really live up to its motto of Let the Fun Begin.