In 2011, the Chevy Cruze entered the sea of affordable compact cars; two years later, it’s still making waves. With more impressive strength, style, and safety features than your average small sedan, the Cruze is certainly a force to be reckoned with, within this formerly mundane class of cars.
From the inside, out, the Cruze boasts features once reserved for higher end vehicles. With front wheel drive and six-speed manual transmissions, the LS, LT, and Eco are powerful machines. The LS is powered by a 1.8-liter inline-4, making for 138 hp and 125 pound-feet of torque. Fitted with a turbocharged 1.4-liter inline-4, the engines in the Eco, LT, and LTZ generate 138 hp and 148 lb-ft of torque. An increasingly significant selling point, fuel economy is definitely something the engineers of the Cruze have worked out well. The EPA-estimated fuel economy of 25 mpg city and 36 mpg highway in the Cruze LS pales when compared to the manual transmission Eco’s 28 mpg city and 42 mpg highway.
With preventive technology standard at all trim levels, the 2013 Cruze is small but safe. Stability control, full-length side curtain airbags, antilock brakes, front and rear side impact airbags, and front knee airbags all come standard, as does OnStar. All models except the LS come with blind-spot monitoring and cross-traffic alert. Front-disc/rear-drum brake setups come with the LS, Eco, and 1LT, while the 2LT and LTZ boast four-wheel disc brakes. Government crash testing has earned the Cruze a 5-star rating for safety performance as well as in both side-impact and frontal-impact categories. According to Edmunds’ own brake testing, the stopping distance for the Cruze was above average, at 122 feet for 60 mph.
While strength and safety are more significant than style, let’s face it: No one wants to own an ugly or boring-looking car. Typically, affordable small sedans have not been known for their attractiveness, inside or out. The Chevy Cruze is a notable exception, according to an Autobytel review, citing its “pleasing proportions,” “bold design,” and “performance flair” achieved by its lowered stance. The interior design is just as impressive, with its two-tone color schemes that mirror more upscale sedans. Optional cloth or imitation leather trim on the dash add the perfect backdrop for the Chevy MyLink package and smartphone integration, complete with enhanced voice control and, on some models, an intuitively designed 7” touch screen. For those times when size does matter, the Cruze delivers an impressive trunk capacity, at 15.4 cubic feet.
Strong, safe, and stylish, the 2013 Chevy Cruze is arguably performing at the top of its class. To test drive this compact but powerful machine, visit your local Chevy dealership, today.