General Motors South Africa (GMSA) has announced the addition of a stylish hatchback body style to the popular Chevrolet Cruze range in the fiercely competitive compact car segment. Two models, both featuring the comprehensive Chevrolet LS trim level, with the option of either a 1,6 litre or 1,8 litre four-cylinder petrol engines compliment a revised range of five sedan models in the Cruze line-up for the 2013 model year.
“Since its introduction in 2009 the Chevrolet Cruze has won the hearts of the global motoring public to the extent that sales have exceeded even the most bold of initial forecasts,” says Malcolm Gauld, GMSA’s Vice President: Sales and Marketing. “Such is the popularity of the Cruze that it ranks as the best-selling Chevrolet nameplate globally. To date Cruze sales since the 2009 launch exceed 1,13 million units.
“With the addition of the two new hatchback models to the Chevrolet Cruze range in South Africa we are able to offer a comprehensive range of vehicles in the competitive compact segment of the passenger car market. The new Cruze hatchback draws on the proven styling and technical qualities of the Cruze sedan and adds the versatility and increased space offered by a 5-door hatch design.”
With the Cruze sedan so well received and performing above expectations the challenge facing the design team for the 5-door version was to build on the universal appeal of the sedan and add a further element of style and versatility. When the Cruze sedan was introduced as a product of a multi-national design team it introduced a new global design language that would be instrumental in re-energising the Chevrolet brand internationally.
Following the lead of the sedan the new Cruze hatchback has an arching roof line that extends from the steeply raked windshield through the sloped rear hatch. A distinctive concave shoulder styling-line emphasizes the vehicle’s dynamic posture. Short overhangs front and rear, part of the body-in, wheels-out, form of the vehicle, provide a visual expression of stability and sporty performance with a ground hugging stance when viewed in profile.
Viewed from the front the Cruze hatch is defined by the signature Chevrolet dual-aperture grille that carries the traditional ‘bowtie’ with an air of confidence. As on the sedan, the distinctive headlight clusters have ‘jewel-effect’ detailing. The headlights sweep upwards, arrow-like, to a point on the front fenders. The rear end styling is defined by the smooth, coupé like, rear hatch with flush mounted tail light clusters, each moulded to include circular shapes that echo the traditional Chevrolet ‘twin-light’ styling motif.
The appealing looks of the Chevrolet Cruze hatchback are complemented by a high level of aero efficiency and low co-efficient of drag. Build quality and attention to detail with excellent fit and finish for panels, panel gaps and shut lines is typical of the expectations of vehicles in a far higher price category.
Door-to-door, door-to-fender, and lamp-to-facia gaps have been designed to measure a maximum of 3,0mm.