• Sep 2nd 2010 at 11:58AM
  • 33
2011 Chevrolet Cruze Eco – Click above for high-res image gallery

General Motors recently slapped a price tag on the ultra-efficient 2011 Chevrolet Cruze Eco. Starting at $18,895, the compact Cruze Eco isn't the cheapest vehicle in its class, but it will be one of the most efficient compact sedans available whether you opt for the manual or automatic transmission. The Cruze Eco, when equipped with a manual transmission, is projected to hit 40 miles per gallon on the highway. But let's face it, most buyers will opt for the slushbox.

Choosing the auto trans will drop the efficiency numbers for the Cruze Eco, but not by much. General Motors executives recently told Edmunds AutoObserver that the EPA has slapped a fuel-economy rating of 36 mpg highway on the auto-equipped Cruze Eco. The is in line with GM's target for the automatic model, which leads us to believe that the manual trans version will also hit GM's projected 40 mpg rating when it receives final certification from the EPA. Production of the Cruze Eco is slated for this December, with sales starting early next year.

Live photos by Drew Phillips / Copyright ©2010 Weblogs, Inc.

[Source: Edmunds AutoObserver]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      RECAPPO #25
      You just mentioned an interesting topic - Aerodynamics.
      Who ever said the Tesla Roadster was a good aerodynamic design. Sure, they put a belly pan on it. Even see the Cd published ?

      Now, the latest Prius, and both Insights are right at .25. Even with a hybrid, Toyo and Honda knew how crucial aero drag is. (Volt also .25, Leaf - looks good, I-MiEV - looks good)

      Look at the new Tesla Model S, the Fisker whateveritis, the CODA wutdafugisdat, Focus EV, Phoenix, etc. These small guys and conversions aren't even trying.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Is that supposed to be good? My 1995 Saturn gets 40 mpg on I-75. And I have only taken off the air dam to improve mpg. I haven't removed the non-functioning air conditioner, made the alternator switchable and use a different battery, or a bunch of other eco-mods that could be better engineered by GM and cheaper to implement at the factory.

      When they get to 80mpg I might start thinking about getting a new car. If they make a convertible that gets 100mpg, I would buy a new car. If they wonder why they aren't selling cars, it's because people are wanting something they aren't selling.
        • 8 Months Ago
        40mpg on the old scale is 36 on the new one.
        The new, '06, Civic was 30/40, and went to 26/36
        • 8 Months Ago
        If you get 40mpg from your Saturn which was rated for about 34, then you'd likely do better than 40mpg with this thing. And better yet with the 40mpg rated Eco.

        Remember, YMMV, in both directions.
        • 8 Months Ago
        My point is that they had the ability to produce 40mpg cars already. But, have they replaced steel with aluminum? Metal panels with fiberglass or plastic? Better aerodynamics (A modern EV1...)? Lowered ride height (I did this myself to my car)? Smaller 6 gallon tank? Those are the easy ones.

        There are quite a few other things like tires that are rated for 60 psi, using LiFePO4 batteries to save weight and reduce alternator use, plugging in those batteries to charge at home, engines that don't idle (they turn off)... Plus a lot of other gas saving ideas that all add up. Especially if you have to take a few 5-10 hour trips each year.

        It needs to be safe and cheap, and Tesla has found a way to make aerodynamic look good.
      • 5 Years Ago
      How is this impressive? I already get mid-30's on the highway with my Ford Focus.
      • 5 Years Ago
      At least one manufacturer is going to give a proper top gear to the Manual Transmission.

      MT is the most economical if geared correctly. It is usually held back by ridiculously short gearing (likely to make AT look better).
        • 5 Years Ago
        And personally, I like manual transmission. I don't like automatics.

        And you are right . . . too many cars lack a good high gear for fast driving.
      • 5 Years Ago
      "Not by much" ??

      That is a 10% reduction from the manual.
      That is quite a lot I think given that many modern automatics turn in better fuel economy than their manual counterparts.
      Doesn't a hyundai elantra get about that on the highway?

      I'm not a modern chevy fan myself. But everything I had read and seen about this new car seemed quite nice and quite competitive. This report, not so much.
      • 5 Years Ago
      In recent times (modern transmissions) -- i.e. the past 3 years, have we seen any model's (same engine choice) 6 speed manual transmission beat the 6 speed automatic on highway mpg?

      -- and on the 5 speed manual vs automatic comparisons?
        • 8 Months Ago
        Almost never, because the MT will usually have much shorter gearing, usually turning 1000+ RPM more than the automatic.

        The Accord 4 cyl MT gets 1 MPG better highway than the AT (5spd vs 5spd). The MT still has shorter gearing, but it is only turning about 250 RPM faster at 60MPH so not the usual MT handicap.

        In this case it transmission + aero and likely lower rolling resistance tires. GM did this before with the Cobalt XFE.

        • 8 Months Ago
        It's not just the transmission. Despite what ABG said here, this is not the Eco model, it's the regular model. The Eco is not available with an automatic according to GM.
      • 5 Years Ago
      almost the same gas mileage as the VOLT, at half the price.

      And, GM can probably sell them at a profit.
      And, no need for government subsidies. - my friggin' tax dollars or borrowing money from the chinese, or printing money
        • 8 Months Ago
        Don't forget that if you drive less than 40 miles or so on a charge, you NEVER have to put gas in the Volt... That's a big difference you have chosen to overlook.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'm starting to see a few Chevy Cruzes out there. Not a bad looking car.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Four miles per gallon less from a manual transmission to an automatic is not realistic. That's too much of a difference to make this article believable!
      • 5 Years Ago
      I can see from advertising that GM hasn't repented from it's former life! It has been building big trucks again like the story of the eagle on the chain. This eagle was so long chained up it wore a path in the soil walking in circles. It's master felt sorry for it and one day released it. --Whereupon it flapped it's wings and lifted off, flew for awhile & then came bak to it's rut again and walked unchained in a cricle again! GM loves providing oil profits of 1.3 trillion yearly to big oil. It has a special relationship with oil companies & they both have big lobbies to keep them from changing! Instead, they apply a bandaid to the situation to fool people called the Lithium wasting Volt
      • 5 Years Ago
      MotorTrend says the the KIA Forte will get Hyundai Powertech 6 speed auto for 2011 model year, so all the versions with the 2.0 engine should get the same mileage as the 'Fuel Economy Package' 27/36. (hopefully)
      The old short geared 4 speed auto only gets 25/34
      • 5 Years Ago
      Within a few years even GM will have 6 or more speed dual clutch automatics, like Ford and Chrysler have announced, and the mileage of the automatic will match or exceed the manual transmission models.

      The 1.8 liter Family 1 engine is the low end engine meant only for strippers and not a common model at all. The 1.8 is an obsolescent turkey and the reason the Cruze was not introduced here in the US until a better Family 0 engine was available.
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