The Cruze for the carry-all crowd

Chevrolet has announced its newest model ahead of the 2016 North American International Auto show, the 2017 Cruze Hatchback. Technically already roaming other parts of the globe, the Cruze Hatchback is making its first appearance in the U.S. thanks to spreading acceptance and growing sales of hatchbacks in the States.

“With nine percent market growth in small hatchbacks last year, it’s the perfect time to bring the Cruze Hatch to America,” said Alan Batey, president of General Motors North America and Global Chevrolet. “As Cruze continues to set the tone for Chevrolet globally, it articulates the brand promise of offering cars with the latest technologies, more features and greater efficiency, performance and safety with fresh, distinctive styling.”

The hatchback version of Chevy’s best-selling global car rides on the same all-new platform found under the 2016 Cruze. It also features the same vastly improved interior, updated powertrain, and continues undercutting the previous Cruze’s curb weight.

The 2017 Cruze Hatchback will offer all the same high-tech features as its sedan brother, as well, including MyLink with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot, heated seats front and rear, a heated steering wheel, projector-beam headlights with LED accents, and an interior that features French stitching and available leather surfaces.

In the safety department, the Cruze Hatchback offers Lane Keep Assist, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Side Blind Zone Alert, and Rear Park Assist. Parents can even keen an eye their teen driver with the available Teen Driver feature, which provides driving statistics.

Update 06/16/2016: Chevrolet has announced prices for the 2017 Cruze Hatchback will start at $22,190, making it $195 more expensive than the Cruze LT sedan. The 2017 Cruze Hatchback will go on sale in the fall of 2016.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback.

  • 2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback
  • Year:
    2017
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    inline-4
  • Transmission:
    six-speed manual
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    153 @ 5600
  • MPG(Hwy):
    40 (Est.)
  • Torque @ RPM:
    177 @ 2000
  • Energy:
    Direct Injection, Turbocharged
  • Displacement:
    1.4 L
  • 0-60 time:
    8.0 sec. (Est.)
  • Top Speed:
    125 mph
  • Layout:
    Front Engine; Front Drive
  • Price:
    22190
  • Price:
  • car segment:
  • size:
  • Purpose:
  • body style:
  • Overall:
    8/10

Exterior

2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
- image 660941

The 2016 Cruze sedan isn’t a bad looking car in any stretch, but the hatchback version takes the styling to a new level of design while adding tons of functionality. Up front, the grille retains the same look at the sedan – that beaked nose with is large lower grille, smaller upper section, and aggressive lighting package. A shapely hood flows onto sharply creased front fenders that send a striking bodyline rearward.

A shapely hood flows onto sharply creased front fenders that send a striking bodyline rearward.

That line continues through the door handles and into the rear taillights, ending below the slanted rear glass. A deep scallop in the lower door section further defines the side profile, as does the prominent spoiler over the rear hatch. In all, it’s a smart design that will give the competition something to fear.

The Cruze Hatchback won’t be saddled with a bargain-basement trim – no, the five-door only comes in LT and Premier trims – foregoing the sedan’s lower L and LS trims. This means the hatch will only offer up-scale equipment. The luxury-leaning Premier trim comes with handsome 18-inch wheels, for example. For those wanting a sporty feel, the available RS package offers unique front and rear fascias, rocker panels, a rear spoiler, and fog lamps.

Interior

2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback High Resolution Interior
- image 660939

The five-door hatchback borrows the same interior from the Cruze sedan. That’s certainly not a bad thing, as the updated-for-2016-interior is a welcomed improvement over the first-generation Cruze. Soft-touch materials abound, as does power-operated equipment and tech features.

Most notable in the tech department is the seven-inch touchscreen running Chevy’s MyLink software.

Most notable in the tech department is the seven-inch touchscreen running Chevy’s MyLink software. The intuitive infotainment system comes standard and offers an easy-to-use graphic interface with large icons and swiping capabilities. Bluetooth connectivity, along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, make smartphone integration a snap. Chevy also included a wireless charging pad for compatible devices.

Technology continues onto the driver’s gauge cluster. A TFT display offers vehicle information and a digital speedometer – a welcomed addition considering the analog speedometer counts by 20 mph increments and uses a ridiculous 160-mph scale, leaving only half the gauge in a useable range. That complaint aside, the driver’s position offers plenty of smartly placed controls for better ergonomics.

In back, a generous amount of legroom offers passengers a comfortable ride. That’s thanks to the extra inch of length in the second-gen Cruze’s wheelbase. Headroom is tighter than before due to the inch-lower roof height, but most shouldn’t notice the difference.

Of course the rear cargo area can’t be forgotten. The hatchback offers an impressive 18.5 cubic feet of space behind the second row and an impressive 42 cubic feet of space with the 60/40 split-bench seat folded flat.

Drivetrain

2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback High Resolution Drivetrain
- image 680017

Behind the aggressive grille lies the heavily revised 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder. The engine dumps the old 1.4-liter’s iron block for an aluminum construction, which with the aluminum cylinder head, makes all-aluminum engine with an obvious reduction in weight. Direct fuel injection and four valves per cylinder with variable timing work in conjunction with new low-friction parts that include the piston rings, camshaft drive, and oil pump to deliver more horsepower and torque than before.

Power is up by 15 horsepower and torque is improved by 28 pound-feet, helping drop the Cruze’s 0-to-60 mph sprint to eight seconds flat.

Specifically, power is up by 15 horsepower and torque is improved by 28 pound-feet, helping drop the Cruze’s 0-to-60 mph sprint to eight seconds flat. Despite this, the engine is more efficient than before. In the sedan, the 1.4-liter earns an estimated 40 mpg on the highway. In-city fuel economy is now aided by a standard start/stop function. The engine is mated to your choice of a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic transmission, just like the sedan.

Chevy has made no mention of the 1.6-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel making its appearance in the Cruze Hatchback, though the likelihood is very high.

Like the Cruze sedan, the Hatchback offers two forms of rear suspension. All but the Premier trims come with a standard torsion beam axle. The upgraded suspension on the Premier features a torsion beam with a Watts Link setup, or what Chevy calls its Z-link design. Basically acting as a dual panhard bar, the Z-link offers greater roll stability and improved handling over. All Cruzes come with MacPherson struts up front.

A rack-mounted electric steering box that reduces parasitic loads on the engine handles steering. Four-wheel disc brakes with GM’s Duralife rotors come standard, as does ABS, StabiliTrack, traction control, and rollover mitigation.

Prices

The 2017 Cruze Hatchback will carry a starting price of $22,190 when it arrives in showrooms in the fall of 2016. That makes the Hatchback $195 more expensive than the Cruze LT sedan. Keep in mind the Hatchback isn’t offered in the Cruze’s L or LS trims. Prices for the Premier and RS Package have not been announced, but we expect Chevy’s pricing strategy to stick close to that $195 price increase for the Hatchback. If that’s the case, the Premier trim will start at $24,190. The RS Package is currently not available on the Cruze sedan, so pricing is still a mystery there.

Trim Price
LT $22,190
Premier $24,190 (est.)
RS Package TBA

Competition

Ford Focus Hatchback

2015 Ford Focus High Resolution Exterior
- image 543213

The five-door Focus is one of the hotter selling hatchbacks on the market in the U.S. That’s likely do to its modern styling, spacious interior, smart technologies, and range of engine options. Ford even offers the souped up ST version and will soon release the bonkers Focus RS – a Ken Block-inspired, AWD rally monster.

Those options aside, the Focus Hatch offers plenty of room for people and cargo. It’s standard 2.0-liter I-4 engine makes 160 horsepower and 146 pound-feet of torque while getting 27 mpg city, 40 mpg highway, and 31 mpg combined with the optional six-speed automatic transmission.

Prices for the Focus Hatch start at $19,015.

Read our full review on the Ford Focus here.

Hyundai Elantra GT

2016 Hyundai Elantra GT High Resolution Exterior
- image 617134

The Elantra GT is a shapely competitor with a striking design that gives the Focus and Cruze a run for their money. Beside its exterior appeal, the Elantra GT offers a cavernous interior with an available dual-zone climate control, 10-way power driver seat, and 51 cubic feet of cargo room with the second row folded.

The Elantra sports a powerful 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine with 173 horsepower and 154 pound-feet of torque. Your choice of six-speed manual or automatic transmission sends power to the front wheels. That extra power comes at a price, however, as the Elantra GT is only rated at 24 mpg city, 33 mpg highway, and 27 mpg combined.

Pricing for the Hyundai starts at $18,800 and grows with options.

Read our full review on the Hyundai Elantra GT here.

Conclusion

2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback High Resolution Exterior
- image 660940

The new 2017 Chevy Cruze Hatchback appears to be a fantastic addition to the bow-tie lineup, bringing more cargo room, fresh styling, and an impressive list of features to the Cruze. Chevy certainly has a hit on its hands with the Cruze, selling more than 3.5 million around the world since 2008 and snagging 9.4 percent of the segment. More impressive, Chevy says 35 percent of Cruze buyers are new to the brand, meaning the Cruze is a fantastic conquest machine.

I don’t expect anything less from the five-door version, though its U.S. sales will likely fall under the sedan’s.

Hopefully Chevy doesn’t relegate he Cruze Hatch to its 1.4-liter engine. I’d love to see the 1.6-liter turbodiesel make its appearance, as well as a hotter gasoline engine in some sort of performance version. The Ford Focus ST is a wonderful target that Chevy could easily aim for, especially given its performance heritage and SS branding.

  • Leave it
    • Not offered in base trims
    • Slight premium pricing over sedan
    • No word on diesel or performance options

Update History

Update 01/08/2016: Chevrolet representative Annalisa Bluhm confirmed via email the 2017 Cruze Hatchback will be offered with both the six-speed automatic and manual transmissions.

Press Release

Ahead of its debut at the North American International Auto Show, Chevrolet today introduced the 2017 Cruze Hatchback. Developed with all the technologies and dynamic driving attributes of the all-new 2016 Cruze sedan, the new hatch adds a functional and sporty choice for customers. It joins Colorado and Trax as the latest Chevrolets to push into new segments.

2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback High Resolution Exterior
- image 660940

PRODUCT DETAILS
The Cruze Hatch has the same, class-leading 106.3-inch (2,700 mm) wheelbase as sedan models, but features a unique roof and rear-end structure – including wraparound taillamps and an integrated spoiler at the top of the liftgate. It opens to offer 18.5 cubic feet (524 liters) of cargo space behind the rear seat. With the rear seat folded, cargo space expands to 42 cubic feet (1,189 liters).

ON SALE
Fall 2016

QUOTABLE
“With 9 percent market growth in small hatchbacks last year, it’s the perfect time to bring the Cruze Hatch to America,” said Alan Batey, president, General Motors North America and Global Chevrolet. “As Cruze continues to set the tone for Chevrolet globally, it articulates the brand promise of offering cars with the latest technologies, more features and greater efficiency, performance and safety with fresh, distinctive styling.”

ABOUT THE NEW CRUZE
An all-new, more rigid and lighter architecture is the Cruze’s foundation for driving dynamism, while also playing a significant role in safety and efficiency. It is more than 200 pounds (91 kg) lighter than the previous-generation model due largely to a body structure that is 100 pounds lighter and an engine that’s 44 pounds (20 kg) lighter.

The Cruze lineup in North America is offered in L, LS, LT and Premier – and a more expressive RS package, featuring unique front and rear fascias, rocker panels, rear spoiler, fog lamps and – on the Premier model – 18-inch wheels.

The 2017 Cruze Hatch will be offered in LT and Premier trims, and with the RS package.

KEY FEATURES

2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
- image 660941

Segment-exclusive standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility via the MyLink radio systems and available 4G LTE with Wi-Fi hotspot
More standard safety features than any other compact car – including Corolla and Civic – with available adaptive features including Lane Keep Assist, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Side Blind Zone Alert and Rear Park Assist
Available Teen Driver feature helps support safe driving habits and offers driving statistics for parents
Standard 1.4L turbo engine with direct injection and Stop/Start technologies, electric power steering and, on Premier models, a Z-link rear suspension
Interior with midsize-level roominess, including two inches greater rear legroom than Ford Focus and Hyundai Elantra
Available features include a heated steering wheel, heated front and rear seats, Athens leather-appointed seating surfaces, true French seams and halogen projector-beam headlamps with LED signature lighting.

FAST FACTS

Cruze is Chevrolet’s best-selling car around the world, with 3.5 million sold since it went on sale in 2008
Since Cruze’s introduction, Chevrolet’s retail share of the segment has grown from 5.8 to 9.4 percent
35 percent of Cruze customers are new to Chevrolet
In the U.S., Cruze is the segment’s second-best seller to customers under 25.

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