Holden has provided advance information on its smallest model, the Spark, which will go on sale in Australia in April. There’s a big emphasis on high-tech features as demanded by the younger generation buyers at which it’s aimed.

Spark boasts completely redesigned styling with class-leading technology and safety features to give drivers and their passengers peace of mind.

We note that Holden has dropped the name ‘Barina Spark’, simply calling it ‘Spark’ this time around.

Introducing the Spark, Holden chief, Mark Bernhard, said, “In 2015 we launched Astra, Cascada and Insignia, followed by the Commodore VFII. In April this year we will shake up the micro-car segment with the launch of the all-new Holden Spark.

“Spark takes the micro-car segment to a new level with technological sophistication. Compatible with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Spark offers connectivity and infotainment features previously unavailable in this segment – these are technologies that the target customers of this car will love.”


All-new Spark has a sleeker appearance as it’s lower than the five-year old model it’s about to replace. The tall bonnet features bold front grilles and the relatively thin pillars give it a modern look. We like the cheeky angles of the side profile. Spark has a slightly longer wheelbase than the outgoing model to provide greater interior room, the old model was pretty impressive for its size in cabin volume and we look forward to testing the new one.

Holden Spark is powered by a new-design 1.4-litre engine producing up to 73kW of power and 128 Nm of torque. Transmission to the front wheels will be manual or automatic but GM won’t confirm the number of ratios at this stage.

Holden ride and handling engineers had significant involvement in Spark’s suspension and ride and handling tuning, driving it both in South Korea, where it will be built, and carrying out extensive development on Australian roads in a wide variety of areas.


Holden’s Director of Vehicle Performance, Ian Butler, said, “Spark is a truly global car but our engineers have made sure it performs exceptionally in Australia’s varied road conditions. We have been working with GM Korea since the beginning of the program and were able to collaborate to ensure the car is agile and nimble in urban environments whilst remaining composed and comfortable on the open road.

“Key to developing the drive characteristics, was a significant round of testing and development at our Lang Lang proving ground conducted by our engineers, in addition to giving target customers the chance to evaluate the car.

“We’re confident the all-new Spark will set a new benchmark for the micro-car segment.”

Safety was high on the agenda and the Spark has new, stiffer and stronger architecture. It has six airbags as standard. Active safety features including ESC, hill start assist, EBD, ABS, traction control and rear view camera in the topline LT model.

Prices and exact specifications are yet to be announced, we will get these to you when we drive and evaluate the little Holden at its media launch. Spark will go on sale April 2016, but we have yet to be advised of the exact date.

About Ewan Kennedy

Ewan Kennedy, a long-time car enthusiast, was Technical Research Librarian with the NRMA from 1970 until 1985. He worked part-time as a freelance motoring journalist from 1977 until 1985, when he took a full-time position as Technical Editor with Modern Motor magazine. Late in 1987 he left to set up a full-time business as a freelance motoring journalist. Ewan is an associate member of the Society of Automotive Engineers - International. An economy driving expert, he set the Guinness World Record for the greatest distance travelled in a standard road vehicle on a single fuel fill. He lists his hobbies as stage acting, travelling, boating and reading.
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