LOS ANGELES – Chevrolet unveiled the production model of the 2006 HHR, a unique vehicle that combines styling and interior adaptability to create a vehicle suited to all lifestyles. Chevy introduced the HHR at the 2005 Greater Los Angeles Auto Show, the spiritual home of the custom car.
The HHR has a distinct design that fuses elements of the 1949 Chevy Suburban – the original utility vehicle – and the SSR roadster. It is built on the same solid platform as the new Chevy Cobalt. The HHR will be available in the second half of 2005.
“The HHR is what you want it to be, whether you’re hauling band equipment around the country or hauling your friends across town,” said Lori Queen, GM vehicle line executive for small car. “With its unmistakable styling and innovative features, the HHR is further proof that there is a new spirit at Chevrolet.”
With its overall length of 174.5 inches (4472 mm) and a cargo capacity of approximately 63.1cubic feet (1787 liters), the five-passenger HHR has easy-to-maneuver dimensions and room for just about any lifestyle interest. Its reconfigurable interior with clever storage solutions accommodates everything from groceries to surfboards.
HHR rounds out Chevrolet’s small-vehicle strategy that began last year with the successful Aveo – a vehicle which recently claimed the leadership position in its segment after just nine months on the market – and continues this year with Cobalt.
HHR comes well equipped from the factory with two model levels: LS and LT. The LT also comes in two packages – 1LT and 2LT. The LS and 1LT are powered by an Ecotec 2.2L four-cylinder rated at 140 horsepower (104 kw) and 150 lb.-ft. of torque (207 Nm). An Ecotec 2.4L four-cylinder is standard in the 2LT and is available in the 1LT; it delivers 170 horsepower (126 kw) and 170 lb.-ft. of torque (235 Nm). A five-speed manual transmission is standard and an electronically controlled four-speed automatic is available in all models.
Both LS and LT HHR models include standard features such as air conditioning, power windows and door locks, six-speaker CD stereo, and remote keyless entry. Additional product highlights include:
The 1LT model also includes a standard MP3 player, six-way power seat with power lumbar, and a satin exterior finish. Bright chrome exterior trim and a bright exhaust tip are available. ABS and traction control are available (traction control only available with automatic transmission).
HHR 2LT includes standard features that include ABS, fog lamps, bright exhaust tip, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter, the Pioneer sound system with subwoofer, 17-inch wheels, FE3 sport suspension and a bright chrome exterior trim. Heated leather seats also are available on both LT packages.
HHR is a four-door vehicle with a rear touch-pad liftgate. Its high roof evokes the look of the innovative 1949 Chevy Suburban, while other exterior cues carry the expressive attributes of the SSR roadster – all unmistakably Chevy traits.
Like the SSR, the HHR features deep-draw, flared fenders which tuck in at the rockers for a solid, firmly-planted stance. A one-piece, stamped metal hood is reminiscent of the ’49 Suburban’s heritage and is evidence of precise assembly quality. More quality touches are found in the single-cavity headlamp design, which incorporates jeweled lighting effects, as well as a flared, twin-taillamp design in the rear that creates a look that is half street machine and half vintage Corvette. Stamped door and window appearances with a one-piece wraparound molding contribute to the clean, detailed design and are uncommon in contemporary vehicles. The HHR’s rear window is flush with the body side.
The outside mirrors are integrated into the overall design theme for a more custom appearance, and the available integrated roof racks are designed to retain the HHR’s overall aesthetic. The HHR also incorporates contemporary Chevy styling cues, including a prominent cross-grille bar with a Bowtie logo.
A variety of expressive exterior colors will be available.
Haul, store, pack more
Like the rest of the vehicle, the HHR’s interior combines the reassuring high visibility and cargo flexibility of an SUV with the comfort, appointments, driving ease and ergonomics of an upscale sedan. The high roof provides excellent headroom and creates a more open, airy environment, while the instrument cluster carries the heritage theme of the vehicle.
The HHR’s interior evokes a feeling of roominess and an upscale aura is created by detailed, jewel-like instrument displays and chrome accents. Interior color combinations feature darker colors on upper sections of the interior and lighter colors for lower sections. Quality also is conveyed in the tailored seats, which provide firmer support, sculpture and plenty of comfort for long drives.
HHR also has standard air conditioning, providing comfortable levels of airflow, cooling capability and reduced cool-down time. The system is designed to provide efficient side-window defogging and enhanced rear-window defogging.
Complementing the HHR’s comfortable and expressive interior is a highly adaptable cargo system, which maximizes storage capability with a host of clever and useful configuration options, including:
The cargo area in the rear also is thoughtfully designed:
HHR relies on the renowned Ecotec family of technologically sophisticated inline four-cylinder engines, which balances usable power with fuel and emissions efficiency. Both the 2.2L engine and 2.4L engines in the HHR have distinct performance and hardware differences, but share a basic structure and construction that includes:
HHR’s Ecotec engines also benefit from features designed to reduce noise and vibration. The pistons, for example, have a polymer coating and skirt design that reduces noise during cold starts, while a new, two-layer acoustic engine cover is tuned to reduce noise. NVH is reduced with a new automatic tensioner that maintains optimal tension on the timing chain.
Transmissions include a standard Getrag F23 five-speed manual transmission or an available Hydra-Matic 4T45-E electronically controlled four-speed automatic, which are available with both engines. The F23 five-speed manual transmission delivers smoothness and durability, with all gears – including reverse – featuring synchronization. Final gearing of the transmission varies between 2.2L and 2.4L applications to optimize the performance of both.
The available 4T45-E is a smooth-shifting, highly durable automatic transmission. Like the F23 manual transmission, there are calibration differences to optimize the performance of 2.2L-equipped models and 2.4L-equippped models.
Strong body structure provides a quiet ride
HHR is built on the same robust GM Small Car structure as the recently introduced Chevy Cobalt. This lower-dominant structure is designed with strength in the lower portions of the chassis, contributing to an overall feeling of rigidity and superior noise and vibration characteristics. In fact, with the use of materials such as Quiet Steel laminated panels in the plenum, the HHR is expected to offer the quiet, high-quality NVH traits of a more expensive car.
Extensive use of high-strength steel and ultra-high-strength steel in key structural components, including ultra-high-strength steel rocker panels and cross-car reinforcing beam, bolsters the vehicle’s rigid feel while providing additional side-impact support. The cockpit “safety cage” provides load-carrying protection and, along with laser-welded blanks used in the door frames, front doors and rear doors, contributes to the HHR’s excellent NVH characteristics and precision build quality.
HHR’s uses a MacPherson strut front suspension design, along with a semi-independent, torsion beam rear suspension and five-lug wheels. Two suspension systems are available: FE1 suspension standard on LS and 1LT, with an FE3 suspension standard on LT models. The FE1 suspension is tuned for a softer ride and includes 16-inch wheels, while the FE3 provides sportier handling traits and offers standard 17-inch wheels and monotube shocks, which provide better ride and handling.
All models are equipped with rack-and-pinion steering with electric power steering (EPS) – a speed-sensitive, variable-effort system that is tuned to match the performance characteristics of two separate suspension settings. EPS eliminates the use of an engine-driven power steering pump, as well as the corresponding fluid reservoir and plumbing, reducing both fuel consumption and the potential source of an environmental contaminant.
Brakes consist of large front discs and rear drums, with ABS and traction control standard on 2LT models (traction control only available with automatic transmission) and available on LS and 1LT models.
Safety and security
Occupant safety bolstered by the following:
Chevrolet is a division of General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), the world's largest vehicle manufacturer. GM employs about 325,000 people globally. Founded in 1908, GM has been the global automotive sales leader since 1931. GM today has manufacturing operations in 32 countries and its vehicles are sold in 192 countries. In 2003, GM sold nearly 8.6 million cars and trucks, about 15 percent of the global vehicle market. GM's global headquarters are at the GM Renaissance Center in Detroit . More information on GM and its products can be found on the company's corporate website at www.gm.com.
# # #