February 29, 2016: Chevrolet Cruze is one of the most value for money car that one can buy in India, today. The American automaker recently slashed the prices of this car by Rs. 85,000. The new Chevrolet Cruze facelift is now priced at Rs. 14 lacs (ex-showroom, New Delhi) and for this price tag, which can easily be one of a compact SUV, you will get a 2.0-litre diesel powerplant, which is capable of churning out 163.7bhp of power output. This means, in terms of overall power alone, Chevrolet Cruze can lay waste to the likes of Audi A3 and previous generation Audi A4, which even in the pre-owned car market will cost you well over the Rs. 14 lacs mark.
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||163.7bhp @ 3800rpm|
||163.7bhp @ 3800rpm|
||163.7bhp @ 3800rpm|
Chevrolet has made some decent ground in the Indian market, and models such as Cruze help to strengthen the company's position here. Cruze had been received with a decent response in the market, although it was not nearly as good as it had performed in International markets. With the Indian market confined to regional players, and anchored to a selective price range, a whole range of factors fuel the vehicle's less than overwhelming response. We're here to scavenge all we can from the Chevrolet Cruze, and find out exactly where it let the score down, and where it knocked it off the park.
1. Stunning exterior look.
2. Host of comfort and entertainment facilities to keep the occupants engaged.
1. The performance could use an upgrade.
2. Its price range is sure to trim its column of potential buyers.
1. The My-Link 7-inch Infotainment System is one of the few things that truly awe you about this car.
2. Its handling is particularly good, giving just about any type of driver the time of his life.
It's safe to say that the vehicle does boast some unique impressions of its own, from a stylish look to a luxurious cabin to passable performance. Chrome highlights, an agile shape and a well balanced profile together make the Cruze gracious and good looking. Underneath the skin, it comes with a mediocre cabin that is treated for a lush and engaging appeal. The black and titanium colour scheme makes for a holistic aura, and occupants are sure to feel enriched by the modern and sophisticated layout of the instruments. The cornerstone of the entire ride, if you ask us, would be the entertainment facilities, from the Infotainment system to the integrated radio system. The machine has been powered with a 2.0-litre diesel engine, and the Cruze comes fitted with some strong safety aids such as ABS/EBD, dual airbags, child anchoring and many more.
A glance at the Chevrolet Cruze and you're likely to be left with a crackling, racy impression. We're sure that the vehicle's slender build, low profile and sporty edge meld to make it a phenomenon among youngsters. There's no doubt that it does absorb some influences from mainstream models, but Chevrolet has also given it its own distinct touch with the classy look along with some rich themes.
At the front, the sharp face is great looking, and the swept back headlamps add to the aggressive effect. The dual port front grille comes along with the golden Chevrolet bowtie, and we thought this alone injected some more glam' into the front. The chrome flavour of the grille, along with the dual bezel highlight on the headlamps together sew some lavishness into the design.
The gentle metallic skin wraps over the bottom-side, leaving strong design lines that flow outwards for a more prominent demeanour.
The side of the vehicle is given its prominence with the subtle wheel arches, well-sculpted alloy wheels, and the serene body lines that run through the door side. You can feel a more plush effect permeate the vehicle's image with the chrome garnished window sill and the chrome door handles. The outside mirrors are body colored, and we thought this aligns with the overall look well.
The overall structure of the machine is balanced with a larger rear portion, and this gives it a streamlined, agile build that is sure to get heads turning. The metallic skin blankets around the rear wheel arches in a flawless manner, giving a more puffed up look to the back of the vehicle. The refined curves flow all the way into the rear side, making for a more aesthetic, visionary look.
You can tell that the company feasts on luxury delights, with a thin chrome garnish at the centre of the trunk. The slick looking tail-lamps stretch all the way from the inside of the truck and expand into the side profile, and we found this design brilliant. The ol' Chevy emblem rests by the top of the trunk, finishing off the magic with a more distinguished effect.
The cabin is reasonably spacious, and when placed aside rival sedans, it probably goes a notch or two up. Taller and broader occupants could have mild complaints, but all in all, the machine can comfortably house five normal adults. For the front occupants, there is decent space for you to stretch your legs, while the rear could use some more. Headroom does fall short slightly, and if you're in a taller range, you might have to put up with a constricted feeling.
Being a Chevy vehicle, you're more than justified in seeking the most sensuous, luxurious appeal in here. We'll let you know that we felt marvellous sitting in here. The Corvette inspired dual cockpit design had our jaws dropping and the premium black and titanium wraparound theme further instilled some beauty into the space.
The vibrant feeling you get when you sit in here is further boosted by a pulse of sophistication and glamour. The advanced looking centre console and steering wheel together capture any average man's attention. This goes in perfect harmony with the black environment and the silver accents. The dashboard slopes down from the top and fuses into the glove box at the bottom. Circular AC vents are pressed into the corners of the dash, and rectangular vents flow downwards on both sides of the centre console.
The console makes for a more energetic aura, with a unique, sliding-down 'V' shape and metallic highlights that compliment the black colour treatment. Integrated at the top of the console is a My-Link Touch screen Infotainment system with the buttons batched below. We thought that the 7-inch screen looked far better than in the previous version, which looked nearly outdated. Well below the audio, switches for the climate control facility have been stacked, right in front of the 6-speed gearbox.
The steering wheel comes with the same sporty design that most vehicles employ today, but we've got to add that it felt remarkably good to hold. Buttons for the audio system, Bluetooth, voice recognition as well as cruise control have been wired into the wheel, and the Chevrolet emblem rests by the centre for a more distinctive image.
Ahead, the triple pod instrument cluster comes with an icy blue illumination, and this renews the modern tone of the place.
The Monotone Jet black seats come with Titanium stitch highlights does play up to the cabin atmosphere. We won't lie to you, the seating is remarkably good, and the leather upholstery further enriches the experience.
Headrests have been incorporated for added convenience. At the front, the armrests come with a storage area and a sliding lid, while the rear armrest is built with cup holders. We thought that the design fed on themes and influences used in modern cars today, but there was some ingenuity in the overall make-up and for this, we'll give the interiors a pass.
Packed within the car is a 2.0-litre diesel engine that displaces 1998cc. It has 4 cylinders and 16 valves wired together through the double overhead camshaft arrangement. The engine has seen an upgrade from its previous version, and its current specs are stronger and healthy. With a power of 164bhp at 3800rpm and a torque of 360Nm at 2000rpm, it notches up 16bhp and 53Nm more than its predecessor. We found driving in traffic a rather dreary affair, and the engine doesn't bulk up anywhere before 2000rpm. Nevertheless, torque delivery is neater and better spread in this new version. Acceleration feels smooth and responsive, and you'd be swept to the back of your seat when flooring the gas pedal. The brunt of the engine is carried by the front wheels, and yet, the torque steer didn't seem too rash or out of control. The engine is meshed with a 6-speed manual transmission that makes shifting a reasonably easy job.
We thought that the company left no stone unturned with respect to the chassis arrangement. The Cruzeâ€™s front arm has been compounded with a McPerson strut, and this is further enhanced with the a linear cylindrical coil spring and a tubular stabilizer bar system. Meanwhile, the rear axle has a compound crank type system, and it comes along with a non linear mini block coil spring. In addition to this, twin tube gas type shock absorbers also help to offer a comfortable, strain free ride. When you're in this vehicle, you're sure to feel more relieved than in other home made vehicles, and we'll give the company props for that. Subtle bumps and jerks are to be expected nevertheless, but you're not going to be tossed about within the car as you would be with some other vehicles. Cornering and stopping is also a neat affair, with the present of strong discs at the front as well as the rear. We thought that the front wheel drive format of the vehicle was a core factor in the harmonious handling, though drivers with a heavier taste might feel awkward adjusting to this.
The company has made no compromise with safety for the Cruze. You're likely to feel more relaxed and at ease here inside this vehicle than most others, with a slew of security elements blanketing the car. This includes the ABS, dual front airbags, side airbags, child mounting seat provisions, underbody coating, a dual electric horn, battery run down protection and height adjustable front seatbelts. Anti theft alarm, an immobilizer and programmable auto door locking facility affirm the security of the vehicle as well, in addition to the occupants. What really impressed us about the safety provisions was the fact that all of them were made available for all trims.
The model comes in two trim levels: LT and LTZ. LT comes with a nominal list of features, including power steering, a tropicalised electronic auto air conditioning system, an integrated audio system with USB, Aux-In and MP3, steering mounted audio controls, power adjustable outside mirrors, power windows with an express down function, a sunglass holder and a remote door lock facility. Meanwhile, the higher end LTZ has been imbued with a far more relishing air, with a 7-inch My-Link Touch screen Infotainment system, an internet radio function, SIRI EYES FREE compatibility, Bluetooth audio streaming facility, a rear view camera incorporated into the Touch screen display, and touch controls for the automatic HVAC personalization settings. We'll admit that the LTZ variant is pretty fancy, but if you're looking to cut short on your spending by curbing your comfort, then we'd recommend the LT trim for you. But if high quality comfort is your primary need, then LTZ would be suited for you.
We'll admit, this car did go further than most others with its merits. A powerful exterior, well styled interior, a range of entertainment and comfort features and a decent handling capacity together solidify its position as a preferable choice for many of today's buyers. On the downside, however, customers have to bear an immense cost, just passable performance and lack of space on the inside. In the end of the day, if you're willing to shell out quite a lot of money for a classy vehicle with style, charisma and comfort, then the Cruze is a choice you wouldn't regret. But if you're a more reserved buyer, and if you can trade comfort for a reasonable price, then we would suggest that you head elsewhere.
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