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by Tim Beissmann

The 2013 Chevrolet Spark has been revealed ahead of its official unveiling at this week’s 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show.

The 2013 model year upgrade brings a revised interior and exterior design, more technology and standard features, and greater personalisation options to the US-spec vehicle. The new Chevy Spark will go on sale in North America in mid-2012.

The design upgrades will flow through to Australia’s Holden Barina Spark sometime later, although our model will retain its budget focus and simple standard features list rather than adopt the high-grade appointments of its North American counterpart. Holden Australia’s Emily Perry said the local arm had no information on when the new model would arrive in our showrooms at this stage.

The 2013 Chevrolet Spark promises to be one of the best-equipped sub-light cars on the North American market.

At the heart of the upgrades is Chevrolet’s MyLink infotainment system, which incorporates a seven-inch colour touchscreen, smartphone-based navigation, Bluetooth connectivity and Pandora and Stitcher internet radio services.

The 1.2-litre four-cylinder petrol engine will also get a mild power boost, with 63kW and 110Nm on offer. The standard five-speed manual transmission is joined in the range by an optional four-speed automatic (the latter is not currently available in Australia).

Ms Perry said Holden was still committed to adding the automatic option to the local range, and said the brand was hopeful it would be available within 12 months.

Nine paint colours – including bright yellow, blue, pink and green – should ensure the 2013 Spark stands out from the crowd, while small decorative inserts have been added inside to create a more premium look and feel.