While a modestly facelifted 2015 Chevrolet Cruze appeared last month in New York, a more seriously recast and virtually undisguised 2016 Cruze has been spotted undergoing final evaluation on the streets around Detroit. This full mid-cycle makeover brings an edgier look to the exterior of this compact 4-door and also is expected to herald the U.S. introduction of GM's new-generation of Ecotec 4-cylinder engines.
More refined design
The redrawn exterior of the 2016 Chevy Cruze adds to its curb appeal, starting with a more aggressively contoured front fascia. Sporting a bolder variation of the division's signature dual-port grille that was introduced on the 2015 model, the Cruze has sleeker LED-infused headlamps and foglamps. Its profile features pronounced sculpting on the doors and a new Impala-style character line in the rear quarter panel. Rounding out the refresh is a new decklid with integral spoiler lip, trimmer taillamps and new chrome trim.
While we've yet to see inside, the cabin of the 2016 U.S. Cruze also is expected to change. Anticipate seeing more premium trim materials throughout and a new dash design that will further complement the enhanced features like Siri Integration and OnStar 4G LTE connectivity that will be introduced on the 2015 Cruze that arrives this fall.
More efficient engines
Chevy has not announced which specific powertrains will be used in the 2016 Cruze, but earlier this year GM showed its new Ecotec family and said the model would be the first in America to benefit from these smoother, lighter and more fuel- efficient engines. The likely lineup should include two gasoline variants - a naturally aspirated 1.5-liter and a 1.4-liter turbo - with the existing 2.0-liter turbodiesel carrying over. As for gearboxes, it's believed the 2016 Chevy Cruze will be available with a 6-speed manual transmission and a new 7-speed dual-clutch automatic in place of the existing 6-speed autoshifter.
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