By the late â60s, Chevrolet experienced a lot of negative publicity and problems regarding its compact cars program and the Corvair model. The production of the Corvair ended in 1969, but much before that date, Chevy started working on a next-generation small car. It would be more conventional, but better in every aspect. So, in late 1970, they presented the new Chevrolet Vega as a 1971 model.
The Vega was a compact but modernly styled model with three basic body styles – two-door coupe, two-door sedan and practical three-door wagon. The front end closely resembled the design of the 1971 Camaro with a similar grille, headlights and bumper. However, the most interesting detail was the engine. It was a 2.3-liter four-cylinder available in two power levels, 90 and 110 HP for 1970.
Both units had a lightweight construction and decent performance regarding its size and class. In 1975, Chevrolet even introduced the interesting although not so successful Vega Cosworth. It featured a high revving 2.0-liter four-cylinder twin cam motor with 110 HP. Although it wasn’t particularly fast or strong, the Vega Cosworth was attractive with an interesting black and gold paint job and unique wheels.
Despite the strong sales, the Vega had some quality problems with the engines and was notorious for its rust issues. The production ended in 1977 after the sold more than two million cars worldwide.