The Cruze shares its attractive styling cues with other Chevy offerings, notably the Malibu. The distinctive split front grille is found on other new cars in the company portfolio.
Available only as a 4-door sedan, the Cruze comes in three trim levels: LS, LT and LTZ. The LS is powered by a 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine with variable valve timing, which produces 136 hp at 6,300 rpm. The unit is mated to standard 6-speed manual transmission, though a 6-speed automatic is available. Cars outfitted in LT or LTZ trim utilize a 138-hp turbocharged 4-cylinder, paired with the 6-speed automatic. The direct-injection engine delivers 148 ft-lb of torque at 1,850 rpm, and Chevrolet estimates it can deliver 40mpg on the highway.
The LS is very much an economy model, and standard features include steel wheels, manual mirrors, an AM/FM/CD 6-speaker stereo with MP3 playback and an auxiliary jack, XM satellite radio, cloth seating and a 60/40 split-fold rear seat. Air conditioning, power locks and windows and remote keyless entry are all standard on the LS as well.
The LT is split into two sub-trims: 1LT and 2LT. In addition to the turbo engine and auto gearbox, 16-inch steel wheels come standard, as do silver interior accents, remote start, a leather-clad steering wheel and power mirrors.
Stepping up to the LTZ adds niceties like a rear parking aid, power-adjustable driver's seat, leather seating, cruise control, Bluetooth hands-free connectivity, electrochromic rearview mirror, heated side mirrors, climate control, a sport suspension, alloy wheels and performance tires.
Available options for the Cruze include navigation with a 40-gigabyte hard drive, 9-speaker Pioneer stereo, heated leather seats and fog lamps.