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Detroit show: Chevrolet Cruze hatch unveiled

World Cruze: 3.5 million Cruzes have been sold around the globe since its introduction in 2008 but the latest hatchback version will be giving Australia a miss.

General Motors unwraps Chev Cruze hatchback but no plans for Holden badges


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8 Jan 2016

CHEVROLET has revealed the hatchback version of its Cruze small sedan ahead of its official United States launch late in 2016, but it is unlikely local GM outfit Holden will follow the US introduction with a lion-badged version Down Under.

Instead, it is more likely Holden's local small car strategy will offer only the recently confirmed sedan version of the Cruze, while its Astra cousin will provide an option for Holden customers seeking a small hatchback.

Holden communications director Sean Poppitt was unable to make any official statements regarding the future small car line-up but reiterated the confirmation of the Astra hatchback.

“We're yet to make any official announcements regarding our small car strategy, beyond confirming the all-new award-winning Astra hatch will be coming to Australia later in 2016,” he said.

Holden builds the current-generation Cruze sedan and hatch in Australia, but will switch to international sourcing of the sedan when the manufacturing operation shuts in 2017.

Unlike the previous version, it is understood that the latest iteration of the multi-market Cruze model was not designed at the Holden development centre in Australia, instead falling to the Chevrolet team in Detroit.

Its sportier looks align with the Cruze sedan that made its debut in the middle of 2015, as does its single engine option with a 1.4-litre turbocharged four-cylinder under the bonnet of both sedan and hatchbacks.

In a release, Chevrolet mentions its key rivals, stating that the new Cruze hatch has more rear leg room that the Ford Focus and Hyundai Elantra, as well as larger boot capacity.

The American car-maker also mentions Toyota's Corolla and the Honda Civic, claiming the Cruze beats the Japanese pair on safety technology, with the availability of lane keep assistance, cross traffic alert, blind spot monitoring and reverse parking assistance.

Other key technology includes Android and iPhone compatibility, MyLink radio 4G internet and the option to serve as a Wi-Fi hotspot.

Comfort and convenience options include LED signature lighting, heated steering wheel and front seats with part-leather interiors and true French seams for a neater finish.

A Teen Driver feature helps encourage safer driving for newer drivers by offering parents and guardians statistics on how the Cruze is being driven.

Like its sedan sibling, the new Cruze hatchback has lost weight thanks to revised construction and a lighter engine, losing 91kg over the previous hatchback. The new engine accounts for 20 of those kilograms.

In the US, the new Cruze hatch will be offered in three different trim levels starting with the entry-level LT, a more generously equipped Premium variant, while a top-shelf RS package will add extra body embellishments.

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