Oshawa, Ontario (November 12, 2010) – The official fuel consumption numbers for the 2011 Chevrolet Cruze Eco are in and they deliver on Chevrolet’s best-in-class promise, with a Natural Resources of Canada (NRCan) highway fuel consumption rating of 4.6 L/100km for manual transmission models.**
In fact, Cruze Eco’s highway fuel efficiency beats non-hybrid & diesel competitors and matches the 2011 Honda Insight hybrid based on NRCan results. It also wins out over the smaller 2011 Ford Fiesta and provides 17 percent greater highway fuel efficiency than the 2011 Honda Civic.
“The AJAC award-winning Chevrolet Cruze continues to redefine the compact segment, offering class-leading standard safety features, upscale amenities – as well as hybrid-like fuel economy without the price,” said Marc Comeau, vice president of marketing for Chevrolet in Canada. “The Cruze Eco is in a league of its own and will challenge perceptions of the efficiency available in an affordable compact car.”
The Cruze Eco carries an MSRP of $19,495* and can be ordered today at Chevrolet dealers across Canada.
To achieve its segment-leading highway fuel efficiency, Cruze’s engineers focused on aerodynamic performance, mass optimization and powertrain enhancements. The refinements in each area paid big dividends towards the car’s overall efficiency, while providing engineers with valuable information to help enhance the efficiency of future Chevrolet models.
Aerodynamic improvements over non-Eco manual-transmission models reduced the highway fuel consumption rating by 0.8L/100km to 4.6L/100km. Many were developed and refined in more than 500 hours of wind-tunnel testing of the Chevy Volt, which shares a core architecture with the Cruze. Examples include the upper grille, which has more “closeouts” to improve aerodynamics, a lower front air dam extension, a rear spoiler, a lowered ride height and underbody panels that smooth airflow beneath the car.
The Eco model also features an all-new technology in the compact segment: a lower front grille air shutter that closes at higher speeds to reduce aerodynamic drag and opens at lower speeds to optimize engine-cooling airflow. Another contributor to reduced drag is the use of ultra-low rolling resistance 17-inch Goodyear tires (used with lightweight wheels), which are also used on the Volt.
As a result of the aero enhancements, aerodynamic drag was reduced by 10 percent over a non-Eco model, with a coefficient of drag of 0.298. That places Cruze at the top of the class for mainstream compact cars.
More than 42 changes were made on the Eco to reduce weight. It weighs in at 1,365 kg (3,009 lbs), compared to the 1,462 kg (3,223 lbs) of the Cruze LT Turbo. The diet program for the Cruze challenged engineers to look at all aspects of the vehicle’s construction, including hundreds of weld flanges on the vehicle. They were reduced 1 mm to 2 mm in length, which saved several pounds, while the sheet metal gauge thickness was reduced by about 0.1 mm in select components. This saved weight while preserving structural integrity.
Lighter wheels and tires are used on the Eco. They’re stylish, polished 17-inch alloy units with Goodyear tires that weigh only 16.6 kg (36.5 lbs) apiece. That’s 2.4 kilos (5.3 lbs) less than the 16-inch wheel/tires of the Cruze LT Turbo for a complete savings to the vehicle of 9.6 kg (21.2 lbs).
Cruze Eco is powered by power-dense Ecotec 1.4L turbocharged engine and a standard six-speed manual transmission. The transmission’s gearing is optimized for the model’s specific 17-inch wheel/tire combination and includes aggressive ratios for first and second gear coupled with a highly efficient, “taller” sixth-gear ratio for highway driving. That means engine rpm is reduced on the highway, which in turn reduces fuel consumption. A six-speed automatic transmission is available, with NRCan fuel consumption ratings of 7.8 L/100km city and 5.1 L/100km highway.
The Ecotec 1.4L turbo’s power ratings are 138 horsepower (103 kW) and 148 lb.-ft. of torque (200 Nm) between 1,850 rpm and 4,900 rpm. The wide rpm range for the maximum torque – a specific trait of turbocharged engines – helps the engine deliver a better driving experience and performance. The turbocharger is integrated within the exhaust manifold, for reduced weight and greater packaging flexibility.
The engine also features premium design elements that give it world-class smoothness and durability while also contributing to the Cruze Eco’s lower curb weight. They include a cast iron block with a hollow frame structure, hollow-cast camshafts and a plastic intake manifold.