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Chevy Cruze Eco claims hybrid-like efficiency without the price tag

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March 30, 2010

Chevrolet's non-hybrid Cruze Eco promises 40mpg highway, comparable to the hybrid Honda In...

Chevrolet's non-hybrid Cruze Eco promises 40mpg highway, comparable to the hybrid Honda Insight's 43mpg

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Next week at the 2010 New York Auto Show, Chevrolet will unveil the compact 2011 Cruze Eco. Visually, this car isn’t going to be big news – it’s OK, but nothing you haven’t seen before. With a six-speed manual transmission, however, it should achieve an estimated 40mpg on the highway – what Chevrolet calls “hybrid-like” fuel efficiency. With that kind of mileage, but without a hybrid’s complexity or price tag, the Eco could prove pretty popular. By comparison, the hybrid Toyota Prius and Honda Insight get 49 and 43mpg highway, respectively, while the non-hybrid Honda Civic sedan gets 34.

An Ecotec 1.4L turbocharged engine, with variable valve timing, powers the car. It is said to offer the efficiency of a small-displacement four-cylinder engine under most driving conditions, but to be able to perform like a larger engine when needed. It delivers an estimated 138hp, and 148 foot-pounds of torque. Chevrolet says the car should go from 0-60mph in about 10 seconds with the manual transmission, or 9 with the automatic.

Chevrolet's non-hybrid Cruze Eco promises 40mpg highway, comparable to the hybrid Honda In...

The engine isn’t the only part of the Cruze designed for fuel-efficiency. A front air dam and underbody panels add to its aerodynamics, as does another interesting feature - an engine-cooling front grille shutter that stays open at lower speeds, but automatically closes at higher speeds. The car also has lightweight aluminum wheels, low rolling-resistance tires, and an axle ratio that has been maximized for fuel efficiency.

The Cruze Eco will be available late this year, and will be joined by the Cruze LS, LT and LTZ trim versions. Fuel economy estimates for city driving, and for the six-speed automatic transmission, should be available closer to the launch. No word on pricing as of yet.

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.   All articles by Ben Coxworth
6 Comments

Ford Fiesta ECOnetic gets 3.2L/100km (73.5mpg) on the highways. Turbo diesel all the way.

Sirron
31st March, 2010 @ 05:18 am PDT

It will be $25,ooo and they will say it's a bargain.

LET TATA MOTORS into America!!!

froginapot
31st March, 2010 @ 09:52 am PDT

These figures (mpg) are US gallon, not imperial (UK). So Sirron's figure for the Fiesta should be 61.2 mpg (US). Diesels are great, but they don't give you clean air - witness the 9 years taken off people's lives in some parts of the UK due to poor air quality, always associated with diesels (even those with "particulate filters"). What you gain on the one hand, you lose on the other.

Harmsy
31st March, 2010 @ 11:51 am PDT

A used 2005 400HP V-8 corvette costs about $25,000 **and** gets about 30mpg on the highway (at 55 mph). That's my idea of a real economy car. Tons of power, but aerodynamic and efficient in sixth gear at highway speeds.

A hybrid that gets 40mpg on the highway would only save me $40 a month in gas. I'll keep my vette, thank you. And I can still haul a ton of stuff in the hatchback area, too.

Cheers,

Doc

matthew.rings
31st March, 2010 @ 08:15 pm PDT

Yeah but you are comparing apples with pears! Hybrids are best in towns with lots of stopping and starting. Diesels are great economic highway drivers.

Personally I prefer trains and then local electric car solutions.

Facebook User
17th August, 2010 @ 08:43 am PDT

Chevrolet Cruze the latest model is the GM's credible answer to rivals like Toyota Corolla, Ford Focus and Honda Civic. Looking at the Chevrolet Cruze we can surly say the rivals seem tad dull in comparison to it. Chevrolet Cruze is really appealing in looks and engineering.

http://www.chevyreview.net/chevrolet-cruze.html

Facebook User
19th November, 2010 @ 10:50 pm PST
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