According to Wikipedia, the car sold reasonably well, even though it had a number of technical shortcomings. I rented one once in Toronto, driving it as far away as the New York City area. That was many years ago, so I don't have clear memories other than it got me around and that I was glad I don't own a Chevette.
As for the styling, Chevette's small package size offered little scope for flashy features. Plus, the car was engineered to be cheap to build, so styling had to be more subordinate to metal stamping and assembly demands than usual. GM's styling operation was probably still the best in the business when the Chevette was being developed (even though a few design clunkers were slipping into production), so the Chevette's appearance was competently bland. Slightly larger wheels would have improved matters, I think.