The 2011 Chevrolet Cruze Eco is rated at 42 mpg on the highway, but new reports suggest that we may soon find out just how many MPGe a plug-in version would get.

Australia's Go Auto spoke with GM's Jim Federico, who said that a PHEV Cruze is indeed in the cards. Astute readers will note that PHEV is not a typo here. Federico said:

The Volt will always be a plug-in electric vehicle. Plug-in Cruze doesn't make Volt redundant at all. Plug-in Cruze would have a different powertrain. Plug-in hybrids use both the engine and motor all the time. The plug-in Cruze has a place and it will be a hybrid.

For most drivers, this is a distinction without a difference, but remember that there was this, this and, finally, this. That GM is looking to expand its line-up of electrified vehicles is no surprise. In fact, that's always been the plan. A plug-in Cruze makes a sort of sense, since the Volt powertrain was tested in Cruze mules. Perhaps the Volt was more of a learning project than we originally suspected. Whether a PHEV Cruze is something GM is only considering for Australia or for other markets will, we're sure, be the subject of much speculation in the future.

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