Daewoo Lacetti 5-Door Hatchback | Part Two

The new Lacetti is compact only in terms of its external dimensions. As a result of its excellent packaging derived from the long wheelbase, the amount of room inside is very generous for this vehicle class. It has 932 millimetres of legroom in the rear, putting it into the top of its category. The boot volume (VDA standard) is 275 litres, with the rear bench folded back; this rises to 1,045 litres fully loaded.

High-volume segment, Lacetti tailored to European needs

With around 2.6 million new registrations a year and a current market share of 16.4 per cent, the compact or ‘C’ sector is one of the most important in Western and Central Europe. The large demand for new models in this sector is resulting in market research companies forecasting rising sales figures for this category in the medium term. It is a trend that will certainly benefit Daewoo's newest product: "It is crucial for our future growth plans that we have an attractive hatchback in this popular market sector," says Andy Carroll, Managing Director of GM Daewoo UK Ltd. "Our almost completely revamped product range, including the new Kalos and Nubira, has laid the foundation for consolidation. Now, from 2004, we will also have a 5-door family hatchback which will appeal to an even larger target group of young, price-conscious buyers in the UK."

The new five-door car fits in perfectly with the demands of the C-segment buyer group. Almost two-thirds of all petrol engines in this segment, for example, have a capacity of between 1.4 and 1.8 litres, so the three power units available for the Lacetti fit those demands perfectly.

Powerful, economical engines

Buyers of the new Lacetti will have a choice of engines. There will be three four-cylinder Euro 3 petrol engines, all of which have twin overhead camshafts driven by a toothed belt with four-valve technology. The entry-level power train in the Lacetti 1.4 generates a nominal 68 kW/92 bhp at 6,000 rpm from a capacity of 1,399 cm3. It accelerates from 0 to 62 mph in 11.6 sec and has a top speed of 106.8 mph. Overall consumption to the MVEG standard is 39.2 mpg.

Next is a 1.6-litre unit with 80 kW/109 bhp. This additional power gives a top speed of 116.2 mph, and accelerates the car from 0 to 62 mph in 10.7 sec. The Lacetti 1.6 has an average MVEG consumption of 39.7 mpg, which, with the 13 gallon tank, gives it a range of over 520 miles. The fastest and sportiest new Lacetti is the 1.8-litre version with 90 kW/122 bhp. This top-of-the-range model sprints from 0 to 62 mph in 9.5 sec and has a top speed of over 120 mph. Despite these excellent performance statistics, its total MVEG consumption is just 37.6 mpg.

As an alternative to the manual five-speed transmission, a modern electronically-controlled adaptive four-speed automatic transmission will be available on the two larger engines. (Please note that all quoted performance and fuel consumption data are preliminary.)

continues... | Part Three
Published 9 August 2003 Melanie Carter

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