The replacement for the Chevrolet Aveo could be the new compact car GM CEO Fritz Henderson acknowledged in future plans as GM filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy this morning.
That new car may be called the Viva, according to a report from Motor Trend.
GM's Henderson said in this morning's press conference following the GM Chapter 11 filing, that the company would restart a shuttered plant to resume production for a new compact vehicle. The plant and the vehicle haven't been named, but Motor Trend's sources say it's the Aveo replacement shown in a cropped spy shot here and in full view on their Web site.
The Viva would be derived from the same GM Daewoo engineering team that developed today's Aveo, but bringing production to the U.S. would help boost GM's image while also giving the company a way to keep some jobs in North America. GM said today it would close or idle 14 more plants as it hacks away at costs to re-emerge from bankruptcy, in as little as 60 days, the company hopes.
The Viva's likely competitors will be the Honda Fit, a top-rated vehicle here at TheCarConnection, and the 2011 Ford Fiesta. The 2011 Ford Fiesta is already winning converts, whether by Twitter feeds or "Fiesta Movement" drivers, but doesn't go on sale until early next year. A certain Latin theme in the names of the Fiesta and Viva might remind economy-car fans of another vehicle, the former Kia Rio Cinco.
The location for the small-car plant likely will come down to Orion Township, Michigan, which GM will idle as it seeks a new product for the plant. Its Shreveport, La., factory may be sold along with its HUMMER brand; Spring Hill, Tenn., is likely to go with Saturn if a buyer can be found (and possibly with Magna, as it hammers out an agreement with GM to invest in Opel).
GM also plans to build a smaller car, the 2011 Chevrolet Spark, in China and import it to the U.S.