Chevrolet is working overtime to change their fortunes in India. Their next two products, the updated Beat (see our spy shots) and the Beat based sedan, the Essentia will be launched in the next 1-3 months. The latter is a very important car for Chevrolet as it will mark their entry into the compact sedan segment. We caught this new Essentia on test today in Manali.
The test mule was a mid-spec diesel version that was probably brought to Manali for high altitude as well as cold weather testing. It has been raining in Manali since yesterday and the hills around have turned white, bringing down temperatures to 2 degrees. We did follow the car for a while around the narrow lanes before finally managing to get these shots.
The Essentia sedan is based on the Beat hatchback and gets an updated front end. The interiors will also be similar to that of the new Beat. The big news ofcourse is the rear boot which qualifies it as a sedan. The overall length though will be under 4 meters which will help it enjoy small car tax benefits. However, the car was heavily camouflaged and we are yet to see the tail lights properly.
Powering the Chevrolet Essentia will be a 1.2-litre petrol (same as current Beat) and a 1.3-litre diesel engine. The latter is a proper 4-cylinder unit as compared to a smaller 3 cylinder that powers the Beat diesel. Rumours also suggest that AMT gearbox will be offered at a later stage.
The Essentia will compete with the upcoming Tata Tigor on one end and Maruti DZire on the other.