The Chevrolet Cruze was an instant success for two reasons in India. One was that it was the closest to a muscle car that India could get at an affordable price and the second was the sheer raw power that its engine generated.
The Cruze was a car that could satisfy any man’s ego in India. And to top it all, it came with a lot of features which were missing in India at the time of its launch.
In 2016, it faces a stiff competition from the likes of Hyundai Elantra and the Toyota Corolla. So before Chevrolet India decides to get the new Cruze to India in 2017, they have come out with a refreshed Cruze for the Indian market. We drove the update version and here’s what we think about it.
There is no denying that when it comes to muscular styling and road presence the Chevrolet Cruze takes the cake from its competitors. The updated Cruze has kept the basic design fairly similar to the outgoing model.
There is a new Chrome grille design on the Cruze now and it looks like the agile boy grew a moustache and is serious about taking on life now.
There is also a new bumper on the Cruze and the fog lamp insert now get LED DRLs and loads of chrome around it. The fog lamps are what you get on a Chevrolet Trailblazer. The Cruze also now gets MyLink infotainment system that was introduced in India with the Trailblazer. The infotainment system is a touchscreen unit and is a bit overwhelming. It’s not that easy to use at first, but it does grow on you.
Under the hood, the car has a powerful 1998cc VCDI diesel engine that is capable of generating a maximum torque of 380 Nm. The power output is 166 bhp@3800 rpm and all this is mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. For safety, you get ABS and 4-airbags. And if you are bold enough to put it in the sports mode the car guarantees an adrenaline rush.
What all those numbers boil down to is a fuel efficiency of 10.3 km/l which we got during our testing and a phenomenally fastest car in its segment. The ride quality and driver comfort on the Cruze is decent and the rear passenger legroom is sufficient enough for the average Indian.
The cabin quality on the Cruze is decent and not in the same league as that of the Hyundai Elantra or the Toyota Corolla.
The rear of the new Cruze is similar to what the outgoing model had and that in itself was quite appealing. And the 470 litres of boot space is enough for shopping and weekend trips. Overall, the facelift now has everything that one would expect a D-Segment car to have in 2016.
The Chevrolet Cruze’s MyLink Infotainment system misses out on navigation. That is a bit of a let down as you’ll have to rely on Google Maps.
Also, from a safety point of view, it misses out on Electronic Stability Program (ESP). It’s a fast and heavy car and some safety features are a must if you are spending in excess of Rs 15 lakh on a car in India.
Though it does have 4 airbags, an extra pair would’ve given the driver the confidence to push the Cruze to its limit.
Chevrolet Cruze competes with the Hyundai Elantra and Toyota Corolla Altis in India. The car is not as refined when it comes to the ride quality as its Korean and Japanese counterparts.
But it sure promises a much bigger appetite for performance which is way more than what the Elantra or the Corolla Altis can handle.
The Chevrolet Cruze facelift, in terms of looks, comprises just a new grille and bumper for now, before the new Cruze comes to India in 2017.
If you are looking for a D-Segment car only from Chevrolet then the Cruze facelift is your only option in India. It’s also the only car that can give you a hair-raising experience with all that performance. The three-year warranty on the Cruze guarantees a hassle-free ownership.
And finally, the new features and the front will grab your attention but before you decide on this, one take a look at the new Cruze that will be coming to India in 2017 below.