First drive: 2013 Chevrolet Trax

First drive: 2013 Chevrolet Trax
First drive: 2013 Chevrolet Trax

Chevrolet may call its self "inventor of the SUV", but Britain has never really taken to the firm's offerings. Will their new Qashqai-sized model, the Trax, change that? AOL Cars is in Croatia to find out.

What is it?
The Chevrolet Trax – a diddy SUV that sits somewhere between Nissan's Qashqai and Juke in terms of size. Bizarrely, it's also only the second 4x4 ever to be sold by Chevrolet over here in the last decade – showing just how little we're interested in the sort of Yank Tanks they sell in other markets. If you thought it looked familiar too, then it probably does – it shares quite a few bits and pieces with Vauxhall's Mokka, which went on sale a couple of months ago.

What's under the bonnet?
A trio of engines nicked from the rest of Chevrolet's and Vauxhall's ranges. We drove two: a 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol with 138bhp, and a 1.7-litre VCDi diesel with 128bhp. We hate to say it, but we didn't really like either – the petrol is just a bit on the coarse side, while the diesel wasn't much better. Of the two we'd be tempted to say that the 1.7 VCDi suited the car best – giving the Trax the feel of a scaled-down 4x4, and providing plenty of torque up hills and on the motorway.

There's also a 112bhp 1.6 petrol in entry-level cars and, although we haven't been offered a go in one, we don't have high hopes – the spec sheet suggests that it's both slow and inefficient.