Spark EV: Wouldn't it be nice?

2013-05-24 13:56

DETROIT, Michigan - Wouldn’t it be nice to lease an electric car for the equivalent of R1700 a month and get that money back on fuel savings?

While there are no plans to bring the new Chevrolet Spark EV to South Africa, we can dream. Here's how it’s working in the US, according to the Detroit News. Even the government is coughing up part of the price...

General Motors said its 2014 Chevrolet Spark EV will sell from an equivalent of R266 000 but will cost significantly cheaper when a big fat federal tax credit for electric vehicles is deducted to the equivalent of R73 000.


The Detroit News reports that Chev will lease its pure electric Spark EV 1LT from as little as the dollar equivalent of R1700 a month over three years, with R10 000 down on signing. The Spark EV is powered by a GM-designed coaxial drive unit and electric motor that together deliver 110kW/542Nm of torque.

Its lithium ion battery pack weighs 254kg and generates more than 20kW/h.The DetNews also reported that Spark EV buyers in California may qualify for other local tax privileges equivalent to a further R25 000 off the price.

Rival Nissan has the same agreement with its customers for the Leaf S, which is a little sorter on the wallet than the Spark EV.

Chevrolet spokesman Kevin Kelly said the automaker wanted to make sure the Spark EV was competitively priced against all electric vehicles on the market.

Chevrolet’s marketing VP Chris Perry added:  “The Chevrolet Spark EV is the most efficient - and now one of the most affordable - EV you can buy. It combines outstanding infotainment and great design, it's fun-to-drive and engineered to impress.”

Orders are already being placed for the Spark EV but the car will go on sale mid-June 2013 at Chevy dealers in California and Oregon. GM also plans to sell the vehicle in Canada, Europe and South Korea later in 2013.


GM said the Spark EV has a range of about 130km of combined city and highway driving with a full-charge battery. Its fuel-efficiency rating by the environmental protection agency is 191km/litre - the best of any current EV. Buyers will be able to upgrade the vehicle so it can be fast-charged 80% of battery max in only 20 minutes.

The 2013 Nissan Leaf starts at the equivalent of R259 000. The Leaf S’s current monthly lease for 36 months at R1700 a month requires an initial payment of only R18 000.

Nissan has sold 5476 Leafs in the US through April 2013, up 160% from the same four months in 2012. In January, Nissan announced it was cutting the price on the 2013 Leaf by the equivalent of R58 000 over the previous model.

  • Johan EN Elize Braasch - 2013-05-25 08:18

    Eish, not a single EV available in SA. Wish i had the means to get a EV dealership going, imagine being able to sell the Spark, the Volt, the Model S, the Leaf, the Bmw i3, Ford Fusion Energi, the Fiat 500e, the Renault Zoe etc. Dream on buddy ... At least we have Eiskom, Hellkom and Zumakom, ha ha.

  • Philip Joubert - 2013-05-25 09:36

    Please get the reporting right. "generates more than 20kW/h". The unit is wrong and it's use in the sentence is wrong. 20kWh is the battery's capacity or energy (it can give generate 20kW for the period of one hour). Not what it can generate per hour. That's equivalent to saying a petrol driven car can generate up to 70 l.

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