I have some pretty serious gripes about the Sonic, and I don't understand all the glowing reviews of it. The brakes are completely numb for the first inch of pedal travel, then grab all at once. Lift my foot off the accelerator and it maintains speed/revs for four seconds before returning to idle (yes, exactly four seconds - I count every time). The MyLink system sounds terrible, the BringGo nav app is useless, and it forgets what song it was playing on my thumb drive on the next startup. Rear visibility with the gigantic headrests is nonexistent. It gets worse mileage than the 2012 Cruze I traded it for, despite being smaller and lighter, and the average economy readout is 10% optimistic, telling me I'm getting 34 combined when miles divided by gallons comes out to 29.
On the other claw - I haven't had to bring it in to the dealer for endless recalls and TSBs like the Cruze, and the trunk is decently sized.
I'd say the Sonic is a decent car for someone who didn't grow up driving Detroit iron, and whose expectations are low. Not me, IOW.
2014 Chevrolet Sonic LT 4dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl 6A)
Value is always going to be determined by the price you can get any given car at, but this is a solid vehicle I'm happy to have ended up in. I bought used one year old with low mileage.
Professional reviews overstate the Sonic's "cons." Most notably, the inferior fuel economy among subcompact cars... but it's also heavier than other subcompacts and its economy is right in line with that. Great choice if you're someone like me who only needs a small commuter vehicle with occasional light cargo but can't stand the idea of driving a 2400-lb midget, such as the Nissan Versa or Chevy's own Spark, where a stiff gust of wind feels like it can blow you clean off the road. The Sonic feels like a compact car on the road, but still parks like a subcompact and has a fuel economy right in between.
The cargo space is a bit horizontally-challenged but enough to hold a few bags of groceries, while there's a surplus of vertical space for tall/stacking objects and you can flatten the back seats if you need more room. Acceleration is fine at lower speeds, at higher speeds it's a bit sluggish but enough most people shouldn't care unless they're drag racing. (As if anybody races a stock vehicle.) Interior is adequate for an economy vehicle without feeling too cheap: Comfortable cloth seating, lots of hard plastics but it's thick and sturdy, headliner has the typical economy "egg carton" feel but is surfaced with a soft dimpled cloth.
There's but a few other minor gripes I have which are mostly just not in line with my preference, or non-issues that take some getting used to, as would be the case when starting to drive any new vehicle. The only legitimate complaints for me are the low-beam headlights feel angled a bit too low, might be an issue if you're navigating unknown territory, and the rear view is fairly poor which is just a product of the small vehicle size and hatchback. I could go for power-folding mirrors too as a feature, over manual folding ones.
No major complaints. The stock tires are supposedly horrible in snow too, so budgeting to replace them might be a good idea up north. (I wasn't about to personally put them to the test.) It accelerates smoothly, handling is responsive, seating is comfortable and surprisingly spacious for a subcompact, general interior construction feels solid. The instrument cluster is compact and all digital, save the analog tachyometer (RPM meter), but gives you all necessary information and then some. Safety ratings are top-notch.
Great car from what I can tell. All that's left is to see what long-term issues pop up in the next three, five, ten years. I can't see the future.
OK I purchased my Sonic Dec 27,2014 new purchase price out the door with tax tags everything included $12,988 yes I was blowed away at this price I found the car online didn't even even have go in to dealer until I had sign the papers I didn't even test drive the car at this price, I signed and drived and still happy with my Purchase 10 months and 17,600 miles later, oh yeah GM throwed in $3,010 ending year clearance rebate get it at that price, I'm very impressed thank you Chevy.
I love my car for the most part. II purchased it June 2014. Right away I noticed that it felt like there was a vent open whenever I used the a/c. When I brought vehicle to dealership to put on license plates I mentioned it to them. They checked things over but couldn't find anything. I brought it back in a couple of more times that summer for same issue. They never could find anything wrong. The computer showed everything working correctly. Then it started to get cold (I live in mn). That's when I noticed the windows foggy up on the inside. Again,couldn't find anything wrong. The snow came and so did the ice on the windows...as I was driving with defroster on. I took pictures and sent to dealership. They finally were able to tell me that GM designed the car this way. They adjusted the vents and that did help a little. I keep a blanket in my car because one side of me (left side by window) freezes and the other side gets too hot. I don't even bother using the a/c as it just pulls hot air in.