2016 Chevrolet Cruze first look

Chevrolet has been busy this year what with the release of five new and heavily redesigned vehicles in the first six months of 2015. This compact sedan may be a top-seller for the brand but is not one of the sales leaders in its competitive compact segment. The company however hopes to solve this by updating it’s globally best-seller model with a North American specific version in contrast with the car sold abroad.

Exteriors

On the exterior, the new Cruze is lower, leaner and longer than its previous generation. It’s 2.7 inches longer than the outgoing model with an inch lower roofline. Its windshield and rear glass are steeply raked for a more aerodynamic profile while its integrated rear spoiler helps the car generate some top-notch aero numbers. Its optional RS package adds new front and rear bumpers, a sportier appearance, grille, fog lights and other exterior attachments.

Interiors

Passenger room is improved with more legroom for rear passengers because of more than half-inch increase in the car’s wheelbase. In fact, rear passengers have more leg space than the Ford Focus or Hyundai Elantra.

There’s a new instrument panel and repositioned shifter and cup holders in between the front seats while its panel has a new look with matte-black, piano-black and bright accents based on L, LS, LT and Premier trim level. There are many other available features like heated rear leather seats and steering wheel.

Aiming at the younger generation, Chevrolet also included Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capabilities in its next-generation MyLink multimedia system. The console comprises of a standard 7” touchscreen with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto and an optional 8” screen when navigation is selected. However at launch Apple CarPlay will be available only with navigation-equipped models. Its increased connectivity provides for more integrated smartphone apps for its customers.

Engine

Despite the car’s increased length and wheelbase, the new Chevrolet weighs 250 pounds less than its previous models. It’s powered by a standard 153-hp, turbocharged 1.4 lt 4-cylinder engine for a standard six-speed manual transmission. While a six-speed automatic is optional, a diesel engine is expected in 2017.

Its lighter weight and turbocharged engine helps propel the Cruze from 0 to 60 mph in just 8 seconds. With its automatic transmission, Chevrolet says the Cruze will reach more than 40 mpg on the highway. Other significant features are the four-wheel-disc brakes with Duralife rotors and backup camera.

Safety features

The Cruze has 10 standard airbags including roof-mounted side curtain airbags and front knee airbags. Optional available equipment include lane keep assist, forward collision alert, rear cross-traffic alert and blind spot warning. However there’s no auto-braking function.

The 2016 Chevrolet Cruze is expected to launch in dealer showrooms early next year.