Domestics Abroad: Part II - Chevrolet's Foreign Fare

Corey Lewis
by Corey Lewis
domestics abroad part ii chevrolets foreign fare

Today we feature the second entry to our Domestics Abroad series. Here’s where we take a look at the international models proffered around the world that wear a domestic company’s badge on the grille, but are not offered in their brands’ domestic markets. This is ground zero for “you can’t get that here.” All nameplates you’ll see in this series are current production models.

We kicked off this series with Ford, and its 13 qualifying models. Our second entry is Chevrolet, which also places second in number of models.

Here are Chevrolet’s nine entries, in alphabetical order:


What’s presently called the Chevrolet CMV was formerly the Suzuki Carry. It’s a Japanese Kei utility van and truck nameplate with quite a varied history.

Originally the idea of Suzuki all the way back in 1961, the general principles of small and utilitarian have stayed in place. This little carryall has worn a Ford badge, a Maruti logo in India, Bedford in the United Kingdom, along with Holden, Mitsubishi, Autozam, Vauxhall, Nissan, and now Chevrolet. Production was handed over to Daewoo in 1992, and since 2011 it has been produced by GM Korea.


Well, look at this here. A little compact pickup truck, and one that’s front-wheel-drive based. The Montana (not the Pontiac van), which has been around since 2003, is based on the Opel Corsa hatchback. The nearest market that receives the Montana is Mexico, where it’s called the Tornado. There’s a diesel engine option, and it’s a 1.3-liter Fiat Multijet. How about that?


You probably know about the Lada Niva, the old Russian utility vehicle which was once sold in the United States of Canada but not in The America. Since 1998, GM and AvtoVAZ (parent of Lada) have worked together on successively more modern versions of the Niva. Produced in Russia, the Niva gets a new generation for 2018 with a reworked, crossover-style shape. The above photo is from the concept’s debut, but is rumored to be identical to the production version.


For the Egyptian and Algerian markets only, Chevrolet takes a GM-Wuling Baojun 630 from the Chinese market, and swaps some badges and lights. The results speak for themselves.


This one’s interesting — a compact CUV which Canada received but America did not. Produced by GM Korea since 2011, the Orlando is built on the same Delta II platform as the first-generation Cruze and Cadillac ELR. The Orlando was discontinued in the Canadian market after 2014, but is still sold elsewhere. I’m getting Kia Borrego chills from this photo.


On sale in the South American market, the Prisma is assembled in Brazil. The hatchback version receives the Onix name, and either version can be equipped with 1.0- or 1.4-liter gasoline engines. It doesn’t seem like we’re missing much with this one.


The second Chinese vehicle on our list, the Sail, is in its third generation. Successful in its home market and abroad, the Sail is exported widely across Asia and South America. This vehicle is also an interesting example of car model consolidation over time. In 2001, the Sail began with sedan, hatchback, wagon, and van utility options, and production took place in four different countries. The current generation is produced only as a sedan, and only in China.


A mini MPV, the Spin has not been a great sales success. Originally produced in Indonesia and Brazil, slow sales caused GM to shut down Indonesian production after not quite two and a half years. This vehicle is built on the same Gamma platform as the Sonic and Trax.


Definitely the oldest vehicle on this list, the Chevrolet Tavera started out in life as an Isuzu all the way back in 1991. Isuzu produced the Tavera in Indonesia until 2007, when Chevrolet took over and moved production to India. It’s known as an MUV, a multi-purpose utility vehicle. Rolls right off the tongue, eh?

Tune in soon for Part III of Domestics Abroad, The Unmentionables.

[Images: Wikipedia; General Motors]

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15 of 47 comments
  • Vulpine Vulpine on Jul 06, 2017

    The Montana/Tornado, especially as an extended (but not crew) cab is exactly what I'm looking for as a small truck--especially in an AWD version.

    • See 9 previous
    • Joeaverage Joeaverage on Jul 15, 2017

      @Big Al from Oz Or live in a US state where folks are allowed to register these Kei trucks as motorcycles along with their side by side ATVs.

  • Tankinbeans Tankinbeans on Jul 07, 2017

    I always try to figure out why a vehicle that we can't have usually adds up to a not inconsiderable amount of online excitement. Is it that familiarity breeds contempt or an anti-american bias? Both? Recently my friend was sending pictures of RHD Skylines because they've finally been authorized to be imported. My only thought was bored bemusement. If I were to act all excited it would only ne because that's the expected response. I don't kniw what makes them so special over the things we can have. I enjoy looking at cars, reading about cars, figuring out what makes them work, but I just can't understand the draw of foreign only vehicles.

    • See 2 previous
    • Joeaverage Joeaverage on Jul 15, 2017

      Why can't we have all these foreign vehicles here? Make the crash test videos available to everyone as a matter of fact and cut them loose into the "wild" to be driven, bought and sold. They will be safer than a Harley-Davidson which is legal despite passing no crash tests whatsoever.

  • Kwik_Shift Oh, just wait until everything is electrified and linked. Then they'll say "Demand is up!", thus raising prices exponentially. They got you under their control now.
  • Cprescott Yawn.
  • 28-Cars-Later Wrangler people are crazy.
  • 28-Cars-Later "Transition" to layoffs, this guy is the Bob(s) from Office Space.
  • Vap65689119 As a release engineer I also worked in quality, if they are serious they should look at Toyotas business model which has their suppliers as genuine partners, thats how you get a quality product