Chevrolet Cruze LT 1.8 Review
Cruze missile

Story by Justin Lee, pictures by Azfar Hashim
10 Sep 2009
 

Can the Cruze be the next hot seller in its segment? Initial impression simply says yes

Chevrolet Cruze

When the phrase "cheap and cheerful" is applied to cars, it will invariably mean that whichever make or model it is used on will cost little money but be pleasant or enjoyable to own.

Or is it?

While some cars may have fitted that description, most were, in fact, more nasty than cheerful. Wonky build quality, unreliable engines and woeful interior plastics were the order of the day for budget brands and their cars. But with the ever increasing sophistication in consumer taste, having a tantalising price tag alone just would not cut it.

And low cost value driven carmakers like Hyundai and Kia (with the exception of Chinese brands) have slowly upped their game. Cars like the Hyundai i30 and Kia Cerato Forte are proof that the cheap and nasty tide is turning by boasting excellent build quality, smooth powertrains and well executed exterior designs. While there is still some stigma attached to driving cars from these brands, the owners have it good in more ways than one and may even have the last laugh over those who bought their wheels from more established makes.

Which brings us to the car we have on review here, the Chevrolet Cruze. It is an important car for Chevrolet, as its parent company General Motors, furthers its aim in shaping the brand to become a rival to the best in the business - like Toyota and Honda.

With the Cruze, GM is giving its strongest indication yet that it wants to be average no more and there is much to crow about the car. For starters, the car has been engineered by a combined team made from parent company General Motors' bases in Korea, Germany and the USA - a move that seems to signify that the Cruze has to be globally competitive as it is going to be a worldwide product.


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