What's New for 1999
In an attempt to lure consumers away from the likes of Honda and Toyota, the new Korean upstart fields its loaded-with-features Nubira. Air conditioner, power windows, keyless entry, four-wheel disc brakes, 129 horsepower and a funny name all come as standard equipment.
Nubira. Sounds like a cloud formation, but it's actually the name of one of the three cars from Daewoo (pronounced DAY-woo) to debut in America this year.
The Nubira is available in two levels of trim: SX and CDX. The SX comes with power windows, locks and mirrors, as well as a height adjustable seat, air conditioning, tinted windows, alloy wheels and four-wheel disc brakes. The sole engine choice for the Nubira is a 2.0-liter with 128 horsepower at 5,400 rpm and 135 foot-pounds of torque at 2,800 rpm. All that for a mere $13,000. Floor mats are a $90 option. CDX trim buys cruise control, alloy wheels and antilock brakes, while leather seats and a moonroof are optional.
The compact Nubira is available as a four-door sedan, five-door hatchback, or wagon, and prices top out at around $16,000 for a fully-loaded wagon. The Nubira's size is about the same as a Ford Escort, though power is up with the base Ford Contour. That's a recipe for fun, since the Nubira comes with a five-speed manual transmission on both the SX and CDX trim (a four-speed automatic is optional). Add in the practicality of a hatchback or wagon, and the Nubira may be Daewoo's best shot at finding a niche in the crowded sub-$20,000 economy car market.
Now, if only buyers could haggle on the price a little?