The Corsica was a compact sedan manufactured by the Chevrolet division of General Motors. The sedan was created as a somewhat larger alternative to the Chevrolet Cavalier, and it was one rung below the mid-sized Lumina. The Corsica remained unchanged during its brief eight-year run, receiving only minor changes in engine choices, trim levels, and cosmetics.
Only two engines were available for the Corsica by the end of its lifespan. One was a 2.2-liter 4-cylinder engine that produced 120 horsepower at 5,000 rpm and 140 pound-feet of torque at 3,600 rpm. This engine is offered on the base and SP trims and is backed by a 3-speed automatic transmission. The other engine was a 3.1-liter V6 that produced 155 horsepower at 5,200 rpm and 185 pound-feet of torque at 4,000 rpm. The 3.1-liter uses the 4-speed transmission with overdrive. Most people were drawn to the added power of the V6, while a few frugal customers opted for the more fuel-efficient 4-cylinder engine. The 2.2-liter achieved 24 miles per gallon in city driving and 31 miles per gallon on the highway, according to EPA estimates. The 3.1-liter achieved 21 miles per gallon in city driving and 29 miles per gallon on the highway.
The Corsica was developed as a successor to the X-body platform that once housed the mid-sized Chevy Citation. The L-body Corsica was released in 1988 alongside the two-door Beretta coupe. The Corsica was once available in both a four-door sedan and a five-door hatchback model. The basic body shell of the Corsica remained the same throughout its eight-year run, with only minor changes made to the body cladding, engine choices, and a few interior features. In 1996, the Corsica was discontinued in favor of the then-new Chevrolet Malibu, resurrected on a lengthened version of the N-body platform as a conventional mid-sized sedan.
The Corsica was available in a base trim and two Special Value Packages: the SP and SQ. The SP trim included intermittent windshield wipers and a dimming mirror. The SQ trim added a cassette player to the AM/FM stereo and a tilt steering wheel. Standard equipment for the Corsica included automatic door locks, daytime running lights, and anti-lock brakes. Power windows, cruise control, CD player, and rear window defroster rounded out the optional equipment list.
The Corsica had the advantage of being cheaper than most of its competitors. With a $13,495 MSRP, the Corsica could undercut competitors such as the Chrysler Cirrus and Honda Accord. Unfortunately, by 1996 the Corsica was at the end of the road, both figuratively and literally. The 8-year old platform could only compete on price in the face of both brand new and refreshed competition
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