Under the bonnet of both model grades that the Spark is offered in (LS and LT) is a 73kW/128Nm 1.4 litre petrol engine.
The entry-level Holden Spark comes standard with a five-speed manual transmission.
If an auto is required you are looking at a starting price of $15,690.
The top-spec LT is auto-only and prices start at a rather prohibitive $18,990.
Standard features in the Holden Spark LS include:
- Six-speaker stereo
- Central locking
- Power windows (front only)
- Height adjustable driver’s seat
- Trip computer
Stepping up to the LT, Holden adds:
- 15” alloy wheels
- Reverse camera
- Cruise control
- Push-button ignition
- Leather look seats
- Leather steering wheel
- Power windows front and rear
The only options box you can tick is the $550 prestige/metallic paint and that includes five shades above the standard Summit White or Solid Red.
On the road the new Holden Spark is a creditable little performer.
It’s a small engine, yes, but it has some pep, because the car it’s moving is a featherweight. It’s quite refined, meaning noise is kept suppressed.
The five-speed manual gearbox is light and notch-free in its action, the clutch is super light and the hill-start assist prevents rollbacks on hills.
While if you opt for a Spark with a CVT auto transmission you will find it is compliant enough and while the Spark is not all that brisk off the mark, at speed it is actually quite a good little goer.
The fantastic thing about the Spark though is the way it drives and this is thanks to Holden spending the time and money to tune the cars steering and suspension to Australian conditions.
The ride is supple and compliant and more than a little Commodore-like, both on suburban and country roads.
This is never at the expense of the body control and handling, which is first rate.
The steering is electric-assisted, and super-light around town, but also gives you decent feel if you want to have some fun in the corners.
At highway speeds, the Holden Spark feels relatively well planted and quiet for the class.
Basically, the Holden Spark feels composed and competent like a much bigger and more expensive car.
It feels more mature than most, including larger and pricier cars, is bright and airy from the driver’s seat, and feels of good quality.
Rear seat space is surprisingly excellent in the Holden Spark.
Cargo space is listed as 185 litres with the seats in use, which is poor for the class, or 985L when folded.
In real terms, if you’re using the back seats, you have room for a few weekend bags or carry-on luggage.
Summing it up: Fun, well-engineered and technologically advanced, the new Holden Spark is in another league to most of its competitors in this segment and thus really is a ‘must drive’ proposition.
NUTS and BOLTS – 2016 Holden Spark
Engine 1.4 litre petrol producing 73kW and 128Nm
Transmission: Five-speed manual or CVT automatic
Safety: Five stars
Origin: South Korea
Price: from $13,990