Chevrolet Sail Sedan : First Drive
All good under the hood!
The S-TEC II petrol and the Smartech diesel are retained for duty in the sedan. Putting out 86 PS @ 6000 rpm and 113 Nm @ 4400 rpm, the same engine in the hatch felt a little laboured. However, owing to the increased weight it seems like GM has tinkered with the mapping since the sedan certainly showed more zest. Keep it in the powerband and the petrol Sail canters along quite well and it’s only near the red zones of the tacho that the engine starts sounding coarse.
One thing that we noticed though was that you need quite a decent amount of shove on the accelerator pedal to get the car moving off the mark or you end up stalling it and this is especially noticeable when you are parked even on the slightest incline. What also affects the driving experience is the long travel clutch coupled with the slightly rubbery 5-speed gear box. But this is only noticed during spirited drives and not under normal driving conditions.
The Smartech diesel on the other hand has no such problems. With 78 PS @4000 rpm and 205 Nm of torque available from as low as 1750 rpm, the diesel Sail has plenty to offer. Throttle response is pretty good and hard acceleration in first and second gear gets the front tyres chirping quite easily. Mid range is quite good and as a result one wont have to change gears frequently when driven around town. The engine gets quite noisy outside but the cabin is pretty well insulated.
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