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Striking A Balance: As Chevy Sonic Sags, Trax Takes Off

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The 2017 Chevy Trax earns up to 33 mpg on the highway and carries a staring MSRP of $21,000

Sometimes, you have to give a little to get a little. As the Chevrolet Trax continues to catch on with drivers, it comes at the expense of dwindling sales for the Chevy Sonic, which are a mere shadow of what they were at the subcompact’s peak in 2014.

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Automotive News Data Center compares the sales figures of the Sonic and Trax from their respective debuts, finding that the former hit its likely record full-year total with 93,518 vehicles delivered in 2014, the same year that the latter debuted with deliveries totaling 739 vehicles.

In 2015, sales of the Trax rose to meet the Sonic, trailing just behind the subcompact car’s 64,775 sales with 63,030 sales of its own. The pendulum continued to swing even further in 2016 when the Trax closed out the year with sales of 79,016 units, dwarfing the Sonic’s sales of 55,255 units.

2017 Chevrolet Sonic Hatchback

The song remains the same through the first five months of 2017: Trax sales through May total 31,044 units, nearly tripling the Sonic’s to-date sales of 11,408 vehicles. As Auto News notes, this swing may be the industry’s clearest intrabrand indicator of shifting consumer tastes from cars to crossovers, and it has also been fiscally beneficial for Chevy.

According to Kelley Blue Book data, Automotive News reports that the average transaction price (ATP) for the Trax was about $5,100 higher than that of the Sonic in May, meaning that Chevrolet grossed more than $100 million more from the 19,636-vehicle difference than it would have had the Sonic been the prevailing model of the two.

Further, Karl Brauer, executive publisher for KBB and Autotrader, adds that the cost of building the Trax is not all that much more than that of building the Sonic. Still, GM President of North America and head of Global Chevrolet Alan Batey told Auto News that there are no plans to cut the Sonic from its lineup, even as the automaker continues to eye means of cost-cutting.

” You’ve got to have a portfolio of products that really provide you the bandwidth that you need,” said Batey.

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News Source: Automotive News (subscription required)