2010 Chevrolet HHR Review
With cargo versatility and cool retro style the 2010 Chevy HHR is miles away from the old wood-sided wagon you used to get hauled to Grandma's in. But according to our analysis, the HHR's performance could give you mom's old Country Squire a run for its money.
The HHR is a good option for drivers who care more about style and practicality than they do performance. With seating for five in a reasonable comfortable cabin, plus excellent cargo-hauling capabilities, the HHR is a decent choice for a basic around-town runner -- which is a common assessment of affordable compact wagons.
However, if you're looking for sporty performance, you should either confine yourself to the HHR's performance oriented SS trim or shop for another car entirely. Car and Driver says the HHR drives just as retro as it looks. "The shifter catches as it moves through the pattern. The steering is rubbery and very sensitive to road camber; it wants to fall off the road crown." The HHR's retro looks make it a standout in the parking lot, but its retro performance may make drivers want to leave it there. Still, most reviewers agree that as long as you're not looking for a performance car, the HHR is a fun and practical companion around town.
The HHR's interior is one of its strong points. Reviewers are fans of the large cargo area, and the comfortable seats. A few even say that the interior has stylish and upscale touches -- a decided contrast to the Chrysler PT Cruiser, which is often credited with launching the retro wagon segment. Another nice point in the HHR's interior is that even the base model comes well-equipped, and it's easy to upgrade to high-tech features like Bluetooth and remote start. Finally, the HHR can be orderd as a passenger wagon or as a panel wagon, which gives up a rear seat for more cargo. The panel wagon can be customized with interior shelving to organize cargo and deliveries.
Other Compact Wagons to Consider
For buyers who love the HHR's retro looks and are willing to give up some interior space for better performance, the MINI Clubman is a zippy option, but one that has a base price that's about $1,000 higher than the HHR's. If you can do without the retro styling, the Hyundai Elantra Touring impresses reviewers with its practical space, pleasant driving characteristics, and long warranty. It even starts at about $3,000 less than the HHR, and comes with lots of standard features.
If you're looking for a small and efficient delivery vehicle for a business, keep the HHR in mind, but also check out the Ford Transit Connect. The Transit Connect starts at about $2,000 more than the HHR, but has a lot more cargo space, plus some innovative business solutions, including an in-car business computer.
Details: Chevrolet HHR
The four-door HHR comes in several trims -- LS, 1LT, 2LT and Special Edition -- with a choice of two four-cylinder engines. A two-seat Panel version with rear cargo doors is targeted mostly at delivery companies. The HHR also has an SS trim, which adds a turbocharged 260-horsepower engine.
Be sure to check out our Chevy deals page to see if there are any current deals on a new HHR.
- "Choosing a new car with good fuel economy and a decent price doesn't mean you have to drive a boring econobox that feels like a sardine can." -- Fort Worth Star-Telegram
- "The 2010 Chevrolet HHR is a good choice for buyers looking for a compact wagon that's practical and distinctively styled. In SS trim, it's even sporty to drive." -- Edmunds
- "This retro-flavored wagon offers a compelling blend of compact SUV utility, small-car fuel efficiency, and cheeky styling. Pricing and features availability are competitive, too." -- Consumer Guide
- "Overall, the HHR is a pretty neat piece, less cute than a Chrysler PT Cruiser and way more refined than a Scion xB. The retro look is cool, but the retro values of practicality and utility are even cooler." -- Automobile Magazine
- "Around town the test vehicle seemed a good friend, able to hold people and cargo gracefully, able to slide into tight parking spots easily because of its trim size and tight turning circle, and good at generating smiles and approving looks from other motorists." -- USA Today