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Chevrolet has long been one of the top-selling American brands and is the core brand for General Motors in North America. Chevrolet offers a comprehensive lineup of cars and trucks, a feat matched only by the Ford brand, and to a lesser extent, Toyota and Nissan.

As GM has struggled to redefine other brands like Saturn, Pontiac, and Buick, Chevrolet has often taken a back seat when it comes to launching new products, but it has often paid dividends with more refined versions of otherwise identical models from its sister brands. The latest example of this is the Chevrolet Traverse. Although the Buick Enclave, Saturn Outlook, and GMC Acadia have been on the market since last year, the Chevrolet version has had to wait on the sidelines. The Traverse features unique styling reminiscent of the Buick Enclave, but is mechanically very similar to its siblings.

The big news for Chevrolet this year is the release of the long-rumored Corvette ZR1. The ultimate Corvette sets itself apart from the already quick Corvette, and quicker Corvette Z06, with a 620-bhp supercharged V8. Extensive use of carbon fiber in the body reduces body weight and adds exclusive flair to this $100K+ Corvette.

The Cobalt sedan and HHR panel wagon get new SS models this year. A 260-bhp turbocharged four-cylinder powers the SS models. The package also includes aggressive wheels, tires and bodywork.

GM has responded to changing market conditions by offering a number of models with improved fuel economy. XFE badged versions of the Cobalt, Silverado, and Tahoe all offer improved fuel economy over previous versions.

Introduced last year on the Tahoe, General Motor's two-mode hybrid system finds its way in to the Silverado Crew Cab for 2009. The elaborate transmission and battery pack boost the fuel economy of the Silverado, but allow the Silverado to retain the truck characteristics that buyers are looking for.

Next up for Chevrolet is the return of its pony car, the Camaro.

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