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|2016 Chevrolet Cruze Seat Room and Comfort: Pros|
|2016||The old Chevrolet Cruze, like the Ford Focus, had a rear seat on the tight side even by compact sedan standards. According to the specs, the new one has only gained a few tenths of legroom. But the improvement feels much larger. Chevrolet claims that rear knee room (not a standard spec) has increased by two inches, and this aligns much better with my perceptions. Some competitors, including the Honda Civic, continue to offer more rear seat space. But the new Cruze's back seat could be the most comfortable in the class for two average-sized men. With a position well above the floor, the rear seat cushion provides much better thigh support than the typical sedan, much less the typical compact sedan. The Civic has a lower rear cushion and insufficient foot space under its front seats, squandering its on-paper legroom advantage. Up front the Cruze has comfortable seats (though, like those in the Civic, without adjustable lumbar support) but shoulder room typical of a compact car. The Civic has two more inches of shoulder room and feels more like a midsize sedan in the front seat. Both cars have good driving positions with reasonably compact instrument panels. In L and LS trim, the new Cruze has a 14.9-cubic-foot trunk, nearly identical to that of the new Civic and about as large as you'll find in the class. But the LT and Premier have a compact spare tire that reduces cargo volume to 13.6 cubic feet. Still pretty good. Next year both cars will also be available as hatchbacks. see full Chevrolet Cruze review|
None of our members have yet commented on the seat room and comfort of the 2016 Chevrolet Cruze.
|2016 Chevrolet Cruze Powertrain: Cons|
|If you're looking for a solid, smooth, efficient, and well-equipped compact sedan, there aren't any strong reasons beyond a somewhat high price not to buy the new Chevrolet Cruze. The new car only falls short if you're looking for something sporty, because even with the RS Package (on the tested car) it isn't. The new aluminum-block turbocharged 1.4-liter engine is good for 153 horsepower, 15 more than the old car's iron-block 1.4T, and it has to accelerate about 250 fewer pounds. So the new car is quicker if you dig your spurs into it. But, perhaps owing to its pursuit of those lofty EPA ratings, the engine and six-speed automatic transmission don't feel responsive and don't encourage spirited driving. The new Honda Civic's engine, though not as stout through the midrange (162 vs. 177 lb-ft of torque) has a stronger top end (174 horsepower) and feels more responsive and energetic. Not that the Civic's powertrain is perfect. Its transmission is a CVT that accepts no driver input beyond a choice among D, S, and L modes. In the Cruze, the driver can at least specify the highest gear into which the transmission can shift using a toggle awkwardly located on top of the shift knob. I'd much prefer both cars with a manual transmission. One is offered in both cars in lower trim levels. In the 2016 Honda this also requires stepping down to a less powerful non-turbocharged 2.0-liter engine, but for 2017 a manual will be available with the 1.5T engine. The new Chevrolet Malibu, with a 163-horsepower, slightly larger variant of the same engine and another 200 pounds of curb weight, scores 27/37 in the EPA tests. I must wonder why Chevrolet didn't equip the Cruze Premier with the same 1.5-liter engine to both make it more competitive with the Civic and better justify its price, seeing as they certified the Premier separately anyway. Or, if GM really wanted the Cruze to deliver the performance promised by the RS Package, they could fit the Premier with the 200-horsepower turbocharged 1.6-liter engine recently certified for the new Buick Cascada convertible. Fuel economy would take a severe hit with this engine, though. The half-ton-heavier Cascada is rated 20/27. The much lighter Cruze with the same engine might manage about 25/32. see full Chevrolet Cruze review|
None of our members have yet commented on the powertrain of the 2016 Chevrolet Cruze.
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