Chevrolet Cruze

Model Overview

The latest Chevrolet Cruze proves that GM can make great compact cars; the latest model is available with plenty of tech features and advanced active safety systems. Available as a sedan or a practical four-door hatchback, the Chevrolet Cruze can seat up to five passengers.


Even though it was in production since 2008, the first-generation Chevrolet Cruze didn’t debut in the North American market until 2010 for the 2011 model year. Engine choices included two four-cylinder engines, a 1.8-liter or turbocharged 1.4-liter, that could be paired to a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. An Eco variant was also available with the 1.4-liter turbo-four and, when paired with the six-speed manual gearbox, the car was EPA-rated at 28/40 mpg city/highway. Targeting the diesel-powered Jetta TDI, a Cruze diesel powered by a 2.0-liter turbodiesel I-4 rated at 151 hp and 264 lb-ft of torque was available from the 2014 model year until the end of its production run in 2016.

The Latest Generation

The second-generation Chevrolet Cruze arrived for the 2016 model year with a new direct-injection 1.4-liter turbo-four rated at 153 hp and 177 lb-ft paired to a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. In addition to the sedan, a hatchback variant of the Cruze will be available in North America, but only in the top two trim levels. A diesel-powered model is expected to arrive in the near future with the same 1.6-liter turbodiesel I-4 that will be offered on the 2018 Equinox.

In a 2016 First Test, we said that the second-gen Cruze is well-appointed and doesn’t remind one of General Motors’ past, underdelivering compact car efforts. The car’s chassis, especially in the Premier variant, strikes a nice balance between ride and handling, meaning it absorbs bumps and road imperfections well and has stable handling.

In a recent compact sedan comparison test, the 2016 Cruze placed second because it’s one of the most improved entries in the segment. On the road, the Cruze felt buttoned down and but it felt less so at low speeds. The Cruze’s cabin was also a favorite thanks primarily to the high-end trim’s two-tone color scheme and the abundant tech features available.

Why You’d Consider One

The latest Chevrolet Cruze is a big step forward compared to its predecessor and offers a comfortable ride, a well-trimmed interior, and lots of connectivity features via the new MyLink infotainment system.

Why You’d Look Elsewhere

Even though it’s much improved, the Chevrolet Cruze’s driving dynamics are still not up to par with the driver’s choices in the segment such as the Honda Civic, Mazda3, Ford Focus, and Volkswagen Golf. Also, the Cruze doesn’t have the biggest interior in its class.

Body Types: Hatchback, Sedan
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