The average price of a new vehicle in the U.S. continues to rise as automakers add more bells and whistles and – for many models – a larger, heavier footprint.
Add to that a supply shortage that’s caused demand to exceed supply, and it’s harder than ever to find an affordable option if you’re in need of some wheels.
With that in mind, recent news revealed by CarsDirect almost feels like kicking auto buyers when they’re down. That’s because the online vehicle research portal reported that the Chevrolet Spark – a.k.a. the cheapest car in America – is getting the axe.
Citing Chevy spokesperson Kevin Kelly, CarsDirect says production on the Spark will cease this summer before the model will be phased out and officially discontinued.
And while the four-cylinder subcompact was never the most exciting model in the GM lineup, it did have one distinct benefit: you could get into a base model with a manual transmission for just under $15,000.
When it comes to small vehicles, CarsDirect says that will leave the Chevy Malibu to fill the tiny shoes of the Spark. The Malibu is the second-cheapest passenger car from Chevy, but it costs a full $10,000 more.
While it’s clear that American buyers have been trending towards SUVs and pickups, automakers seem to be racing to make that trend permanent. The Spark will be laid to rest beside the Ford Fiesta and Focus, the Chevy Sonic and Cruze, the Honda Fit, Toyota Yaris and Volkswagen Golf – all of which have recently been put out to pasture.
So buyers can either get on board with a larger, more expensive vehicle, or get in line and try to snag one of these dying breeds before it’s too late.