The 2011 Chevrolet Cruze promises mid-size space in a compact package, as well as near-hybrid fuel economy. Only time will tell if it can deliver.
The Chevrolet Cruze marks a shift in the thinking of General Motors, Chevrolet’s parent company. Rather than making some small cars for the U.S. and others for European and Asian markets, GM is now selling the same small cars across all markets. That’s good news for American consumers, and news that could have the current Affordable Small Car class leaders shaking in their tires.
Buyers in Europe and Asia typically expect more from their small cars, so to compete in those markets, the Chevrolet Cruze has to be good. Americans, who tend to see small cars as cheap appliances, will benefit from all the extra engineering and polishing the Chevy Cruze has undergone for the world market. Edmunds says, “After all the calculations are done, the 2011 Chevrolet Cruze should provide comfort and space and build quality never before seen in this segment at this price.”
While the Chevrolet Cruze isn’t expected to go on sale until the end of 2010, it has made the auto show circuit, been on sale in Europe for two years and test-driven by a few car reviewers. Those that have driven it say it’s a decent performer, especially if you’re looking to maximize gas mileage. The interior gets high marks, both for its space, available features and upscale ambience. The Chevy Cruze also stands out for its safety features — 10 airbags are standard. That’s more airbags than some in the class offer as options. It’s still too early to tell much, but so far reviewers like the Cruze and think it will make a solid choice for small car buyers.