Mexican Chevrolet Aveo: Zero Star Safety Rating

Chris Tonn
by Chris Tonn
mexican chevrolet aveo zero star safety rating

The Chevrolet Aveo is the most popular car in Mexico, but is also the least safe, according to consumer safety experts. Testing from Latin NCAP found that the Aveo, when sold without airbags, received zero stars for its front-passenger safety rating.

Huffington Post and The Wall Street Journal report that American safety advocates including Consumer Reports have written to General Motors CEO Mary Barra, asking why the potentially life-saving devices that are installed as standard equipment for many other countries, are expensive add-ons for Latin American countries.

(“Life-saving” assuming that Takata isn’t the supplier.)

We looked at Chevrolet Mexico’s car configurator, and with the help of high-school Spanish (and Google Translate) we determined that Mexican consumers need to pay the equivalent of $2,700 more for the LTZ model to get airbags. Note the photo of the steering wheel in the lower right corner:

The base LS model, which lists for the equivalent of $8,875, doesn’t have the option. See the airbag-free tiller here:

Considering the blowback GM has faced for safety-related devices, including its ignition switches, one would think that minimizing negative press over safety issues would be a priority.

The letter, drafted by Consumer Reports and Public Citizen, asked GM to make standard airbags across its lineup globally.

“Auto safety cannot only be for citizens living in wealthy countries,” the groups wrote, according to the Wall Street Journal. “Yet GM’s practice of providing some consumers with the best safety technologies, while not even providing air bags to others, strikes us as a morally indefensible decision.”

According to the Wall Street Journal, two airbags could cost as little as $100 for each car.

Our own Bozi Tatarevic says that cost to be a little higher, according to GM:

2014 Chevy Sonic

SRS Module — Cost: $288; Retail: $416

Front Impact Sensor — Cost $58; Retail: $83

Drivers Airbag — Cost $504; Retail: $750

Passenger Airbag — Cost $517; Retail: $750

Total — Cost $1,367; Retail: $1,999

(Clarification: “Cost” is wholesale/dealer price; retail is what you and I would pay. Sorry for the confusion. — Aaron)

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4 of 67 comments
  • Art Vandelay Art Vandelay on Dec 28, 2015

    I heard Trump put GM up to it.

  • Flybrian Flybrian on Dec 28, 2015

    Is Carlos Ghosn CC'd on this do-nothing letter since his company still 'brazenly and unconscionably' offers a '90MY Sentra in Mexico as brand-new...with NO trim level having airbags even as options.

    • See 1 previous
    • Pch101 Pch101 on Dec 29, 2015

      Believe it or not, groups such as Latin NCAP and Public Citizen issue more than one press release. The Nissan Tsuru was covered before. Keep in mind that the reason that you aware of the Nissan is because of the organization that you're whining about. Who do you think conducted the crash test to which you are referring?

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