Chevrolet Cruze 2011, The Compact Done Right
General Motors finally has a player competitive enough to take on the likes of Honda, Toyota, Nissan, Hyundai or Kia in the compact car arena. Meet the Chevrolet Cruze 2011, come to set right what the Cavalier and Cobalt wronged.
On the exterior, the car keeps the new era Chevrolet allure. Up front, the car wears the same mild split grille found around Chevy line. Some more aggressive headlights positioned side-ways help tone up the car a bit, along with the sharply defined wheel arch. Chrome tones all over remind us of the Malibu, and complete the not-cheap-at-all look of the car that is more than called for considering the preconceptions Americans tend to have when it comes to compact cars.
It’s the interior that makes that difference we were talking about in the firs paragraph. This time General Motors invested more in quality materials and modern design.
For example, in the In LTZ trim, the main start of the dash is a well-sorted center stack, accented with broad swaths of leather. The dash trimmings, seats and steering wheel are all coated in real leather. Sure, the rest is plastic but it’s looking sturdy. Seats can be positioned a lot, especially the drivers seat, so no one will have problems getting behind that well even if this is a a compact. A telescopic steering wheel is also present on the Chevrolet Cruze 2011. Thanks to a smart roof design, the difference between rear and front headroom is just two inches.
A rather old, tech wise, engine is on the basic power option for the Cruze 2011, we’re talking about a 1.8-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder with 136 hp and 124 lb-ft of torque. A second options is available, that feats your Cruze with a more up-to-date turbocharged 1.4-liter direct-injection four-cylinder bolted to a six-speed automatic gearbox, with 138 horsepower at 4,900 rpm and 148 pound-feet of torque at 1,850 rpm – Chevrolet claims. With this slightly more expensive engine option, the Cruze aims at 40 mph EPA highway fuel economy. Impressive! Six-speed manual can be picked if you’re an old school driver, for either of the engine packs.
You’re buying a compact car, so you don’t want to participate in any drag races nor carry two bikes plus that fat picnic basket around, you just want an affordable drive and a car that’s nice to spend time in. And the Chevrolet Cruze 2011 delivers. GM isn’t even trying to compete with the new Ford Fiesta, with is much more sportier, so this comes as additional proof that they got their homework right. And all this with a starting price of $16,995, that can go up well over the $20k line if you add the turbocharged engine with leather interior, four-wheel disc brakes and LTZ trim like the pictures model.
We’ll keep you posted on how well the Chevrolet Cruze 2011 is farting. Check out the photo gallery for a red LTZ trimmed Cruze out in the green.