Chevrolet Cruze LTZ-Ownership Report_EDIT: 41,000kms Update
I was using a Skoda Octavia 1.9 TDi since 2002 and had clocked 145000KMS till November 2009. I dint want to buy a Skoda again as after I passed 100000KMS the maintenance cost increased and I incurred a lot of expense as I had to replace the timing kit, clutch plate A/C Cooling coil and Suspension expense. I understood that mainting a Skoda was an expensive issue. But as you all know the Skoda is a very sturdy car and ifone maintains it well one can drive confidently without any doubts on its durability. I did not have a single brake down in my 1450000km run in my Octavia.
As I do a lot of running I wanted to buy a deisel motor and sturdy vehicle as my replacement for the Octavia. I was thinking on the Fortuner. But I was initialy put off by its Innova like interiors and the wait period was too much and my Skoda will not serve me any more time. I read the comprehensive review of the Cruze in T BHP and was impressed by the powerful engine and cockpit like interiors.On October 15 2009 I had a chance to feel the Cruze at Sundaram Motors. First Look and I decided this is going to be my next car. I booked a white Cruze 2 days later and delivery was promised by 1st week of November. But I got the delivery only on December 4 2009 and that too a black my second choice due to goof up from the dealers side.
The first thing that caught my imagination was the stonking power of this 2 litre 148BHP engine. The pick up and speeds that this car cruzes to in no time is just amazing. During the course of this report I will list out the negatives of the Cruze as no car is 100% foolproof.
My first drive was to Bangalore on NH4/46/7 on day 2 of my Cruze ie Dec 5 2009. It was a pleasure to drive on the highway as it reached speeds in excess of 180KMPH in no time. The handling in high speeds was sturdy. In sharp turns I felt a slight wobble in speeds of 140KMPH which was listed out in the T BHP review also. Unlike the European cars which are planted to the road even in sharp turns the Cruze was not.The geras have to be changed often as once the car slows down in 4th or 5th gear it takes a long time to gain the speed as the in gear roll on time is very slow. But if one is used to downshifting often this is not a problem. The FE was standard at 12KMPL. Brakes are very responsive. I found the OE tires very narrow for this car hence up graded to 225/45R17 Good Year and also changed the Alloys. Attaching few photos below. Will continue my post after that.
The Cruze is a great car and is one worthy alternative to the Octy. Hope it serves you well.
Waiting for the rest of your review. Post some pics of the interior too. Thanks.
P.S : I liked the OE alloys better.
wow! The alloys look brilliant and i love that exhaust pipe! This is by far the best Cruze i have seen till date. Congratulations Mr. Sameer! Plz post more pictures of this stunning black beauty!
P.S: The alloys look very similar to the ones seen on 5 series. Good choice!
I quite like the new alloys. Very like the Five. Congratulations on your new ride !! Heard it's quite a rocket.
She looks stunning in Black. One of the Best colours in the Cruze colour palette.
The alloys looks brilliant.
Good choice. Happy and safe motoring !
Nice review Sameer!
Your cruze looks brutal in black - really stunning, probably has a lot of road presence! The alloys gel perfectly, good choice.
The combination of the wheels and the black looks great.. Awesome looking ride
The first service was at 1000kms and I had told the sales guy that my Cruze would be the fastest to get to first service. I was at the service station within 4 days of taking delivery!!!. It was not a service actually just an assesment of the car by the service guys.
The drivers seating position was just perfect for me. With the telescopic steering wheel I got the right position. I like the music system. Its one of the best OE's I have experienced if not the best. It has a 6 cd in dash with aux and FM. The display is very bright and clear with light blue color which is soothing to the eyes. It gives out a lot of info as well,like the album name playback singer, music and lyrics info.With info on the source of music as well.
Apart from this the same display has vehicle settings like coming home lights auto door lock unlock settings indication and warning sounds settings if the key fob is left inside the car etc..The PEPS feature is very convenient to me,as I do not need to have the key fob in hand. i have to just place it in my pocket and one pull of the door handle the doors are unlocked. Once I am inside the car I just need to press the clutch pedal and press the start stop button and the engine comes to life Its that simple. At a press of the start/stop button the car shuts down. Once I am out of the car I need to touch the sensor on the door handle and the car is locked. Once I move away from the car it remains locked. As I come close the car is unlocked by a pull of the door handle. This is a wonderful feature in this car. My friends and family to whom I have given a demo of this feature are just amazed and impressed.
The PEPS feature can be switched off in the vehicle settings if any one has any issues with the safety, as the vehicle gets unlocked if the key fob is near the car.In case you leave the key fob inside the car and open the door, the horn comes on. Once the car is in motion and it crosses 20KMPH all the doors including the boot and fuel lid get locked. As you want to fill the diesel there is a unlock button inside the car , by pressing that all the doors get unlocked as well as the fuel lid. Just by a press of the fuel lid it opens once all the doors are unlocked. If the doors are locked the fuel lid does not open by pressing it.
The key fob has lock unlock and boot lid opening buttons. The power windows are one touchdown for front driver and passenger side. They are not one touch up which I felt was a glaring omission. The seats have manual adjustment.There is no height adjustment for passenger side seats. Lumber support is also missing for both driver and passenger.The dash glove box is spacious. There are two huge cup holders in between the front seats. The door pockets are huge as well that can hold a 1 litre water bottle. On top of the dash there is a compartment which has cooling facility,it can accomodate chocolates.
There is a centre armrest with storage facility in between the driver and passenger seats. Which also has the aux port inside it. The armrest can be pulled in front for convenience. Sun glass holder is on top of the drivers side. It has thin cushioning layer inside for avoiding any scratches on the sun glasses. A small but very good touch. The central console which is like a waterfall has the a/c controls. There is an AQS feature which is the air quality sensor. It cleans the outside air before letting it in. The automatic climate control is effective and there are front and rear defoggers. The de foggers can be set in auto or manual in the vehicle settings. There are 2 reading lights in front.
The MID gives out DTE KMPH trip reading average fuel consumption and instant fuel consumption.The average fuel consumption is very precise as I have checked several times by filling the tank to capacity running for about 500kms before refueling it to capacity. the average matches to what is shown on the MID. The engine running time feature is missing which the octavia had. There is an option to change the reading to miles. The indicators are on the right side.There is auto wiper rain sensor feature which is again very convenient. The features are simple and very convenient to operate. Cruise Control is available too.
A new touch to the cruise control is that the speed can be increased on the steering mounted control itself when the car is in cruise control mode without pressing the accelerator, in case one needs to increase the speed from the original speed that was set at the time of switching on the cruise control. On the right side of the steering wheel the audio controls are located.Foot rest or dead pedal is missing. I find this very inconvenient during long drives.ORVM's have one touch auto close/open.
The rear leg room is similar to the Octavia. The middle passenger is a bit un comfortable in the rear as the seating positoin is high. Also the rear part roof is slanting which is not good for tall passengers as their head will touch the roof. The rear seats split 60:40.The rear door pockets are small compared to the front. There is sun roof auto slide and it also has an option where it just opens a bit for the air to come in.
There is a soft grill type thing on the sun roof which comes out when the sun roof is slided fully. This filters the air a nice feature. There are 2 front air bags. I feel for such a fast car 6 air bags should be standard. Th central cnsole which looks like a cockpit is very attractive and well illuminated too. The plastics as mentioned in the review by tsk are a bit cheap. There is scope for improvment here. The boot is small by about a 100 litres to the Octavias. There is a first aid kit. Spare bulbs and hazard reflector.
Some more interior pics.
Thanks for the great pictures and the review thus far. What would you say about it's rear bench? Obviously it is more spacious and comfortable than your Octavia but would like to know your feedback about it.
Congratulation on your new purchase. You have clocked 1000 Kms in 4 days. That's quite a driving in 4 days.
Nice pictures. You have already spent more than two hours in the middle of night on uploading and writing your experience so far.clap:
Looking forward to your initial driving experience.
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