Go
2014 Chevrolet Cruze Photo
6.0
/ 10
On Performance
BASE INVOICE
$16,906
BASE MSRP
$17,520
On Performance
Any attempt at sport-sedan handling in the Chevy Cruze is trumped by ride quality; acceleration and braking is competent, not exciting.
6.0 out of 10
Shopping for a new Chevrolet Cruze?

GET A FREE PRICE QUOTE

PERFORMANCE | 6 out of 10

Expert Quotes:

The most impressive thing about the Cruze was its handling.
Road & Track

The most surprising characteristic of the 2011 Chevrolet Cruze is its genuinely athletic handling and startlingly sophisticated ride quality.
Edmunds

pleasingly torquey and lively in a 6-speed manual-equipped Eco model
Kelley Blue Book

Throttle response isn't exactly eager, but the turbo comes on stream quickly
Automobile Magazine

Thanks to some clever gearing, the little 1.4-liter feels like it has more torque than it does off the line.
Autoblog

The 2014 Chevrolet Cruze has added an additional diesel powertrain option to the two gasoline four-cylinder engines it's offered since 2011. The clear choice is between the diesel and the smaller of the gasoline engines, and a lot of it will depend on what kind of driving you do.

The Cruze LS entry-level car comes with a 1.8-liter four that performs adequately but needs to be pushed hard--and is loud once you do. The rest of the lineup--the LT and LTZ trim levels--comes with a turbocharged 1.4-liter four that is smoother, more refined, and stronger at lower engine speeds. It has a good linear accelerator feel, and pairs well with the six-speed automatic transmission that's offered for both engines. There's a six-speed manual gearbox offered on most models as well, but the vast majority of buyers will go for the automatic.

New this year is a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder diesel engine, known as the 2.0T and closely related to one sold for years in Europe in various Chevy and Opel models. It produces 151 hp and a substantial 264 lb-ft of torque, and is paired to a different, beefier six-speed automatic only (there's no manual gearbox offered). The driving feel of the Cruze Diesel is quite different; it lags and is hesitant off the line but then surges forward swiftly through its gears and accelerates hard once it gets going. This makes it borderline annoying in stop-and-go traffic, but delightful on the highway.

In picking powertrains, choose the one that's best for the driving you do. If you drive long distances at highway speeds, the diesel is the one to get, though it comes in at the high end of the Cruze range with a sticker price around $25,000. If your Cruze will be used around town, choose the 1.4-liter turbo, which is smooth and almost as fuel-efficient--especially if you go for the Cruze Eco model.

The Chevy Cruze handles and holds the road well enough, but it's more of a predictable family sedan behind the wheel than sportier competitors like the Mazda 6. On corners, the independently suspended rear wheels stay in touch with the pavement even on choppy surfaces. The ride is its strong point, never harsh or busy, though it comes at the expense of some body roll that discourages hard driving. Overall, the Cruze inspires confidence even if it's not the nimblest of mid-size sedans.

Base Cruze models come with rear drum brakes, while all others get four-wheel discs. The mid-level LT model gets a Touring chassis and high-end 2LT and LTZ trims move up to the Sport chassis--which has a slightly lower ride height, retuned shocks, and slightly stiffer spring rates. Unless you're doing mostly highway driving, we recommend the Sport if you have the choice.

The Cruze Diesel gets slightly larger front brakes to compensate for its extra weight; they work fine and stop the car confidently, even if they're a little jumpy at times. (It also gets a stronger 12-volt battery, a higher-output alternator, and so forth.) One other diesel peculiarity: We found that its ultra-low-rolling-resistance tires squealed on corners long before those of other Cruze models.

Conclusion

Any attempt at sport-sedan handling in the Chevy Cruze is trumped by ride quality; acceleration and braking is competent, not exciting.

« Prev: Interior / Exterior Next: Comfort and Quality »

Would You Prefer a Free Dealer Price Quote?

With competitive price quotes from multiple dealers, you will be prepared when you meet your local car dealer. Please tell us how to contact you so that dealers can compete for your business!
There are no dealers in our network that are located near the ZIP code. Please change your ZIP code or see cars for sale near you.
Update ZIP Code
2. Tell us a little bit about yourself
We are committed to your privacy. By submitting this form you agree the phone number you provided may be used to contact you (including autodialed or pre-recorded calls). Consent is not a condition of purchase.
Other Choices Read More
8.8
/ 10
TCC Rating
8.4
/ 10
TCC Rating
7.6
/ 10
TCC Rating
7.6
/ 10
TCC Rating
8.4
/ 10
TCC Rating
Related Used Listings
Browse used listings in your area

How does the
TCC Rating work?
The TCC Rating is a clear numeric rating value based on a 10-point scale that reflects the overall opinion of our automotive experts on any vehicle and rolls up ratings we give each vehicle across sub-categories you care about like performance, safety, styling and more.

Our rating also has simple color-coded “Stop” (red), “Caution” (orange),
or “Go” (green) messages along with the numerical score so you can easily understand where we stand at a glance.

Our automotive experts then also collect and show you what other websites say about these different aspects of any vehicle. We do this leg work for you to simplify your research process.

Learn more about how we rate and review cars here.

 
© 2015 The Car Connection. All Rights Reserved. The Car Connection is published by High Gear Media. Stock photography by izmo, Inc. Send us feedback.