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For Chevy mini-car concept, three is the magic number

Groove, Beat, and Trax aren’t hip-hop DJs, they’re three sprightly little concept cars Chevrolet showed to the press at today’s preview for the 2007 New York International Auto Show. Unabashedly marketed towards young drivers of compact urban cars like Mini and Beetle, chances are likely that Chevy will put one of them into production by the end of the decade.

The designs are cutesy. The Groove has a retro style, the Beat is a futuristic three-door hatchback, and the Trax looks like a rugged SUV after being put through the shrink ray. The cars appear to be friends, but starting today they are actually clashing like high school seniors in a popularity contest. On a Chevy minisite, web surfers can vote for which one they like best. It’s an innovative if not lazy form of market research: the winner will run the best chance of hitting production lines.

As I post this, the Groove is narrowly ahead, with 35.3% of votes.

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