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Car and Driver: Efficient Cruze-ing: 2016 Chevrolet Cruze EPA-Rated as High as 42 MPG Highway


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2016 Chevrolet Cruze LT

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Getting only 40 miles on a gallon of regular gasoline is so early-2010s—the new 2016 Chevrolet Cruze is officially EPA-rated at up to 42 mpg on the highway. Along with its city rating of 30 mpg, the redesigned Cruze’s numbers are fully competitive with the leaders in its segment, the Honda Civic 1.5T (EPA rated at 31/42 mpg city/highway) and the Toyota Corolla LE Eco (rated at 30/42 mpg city/highway).

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The 2016 Cruze’s fuel-economy story doesn’t end there, however, as other versions of the redesigned compact are rated slightly lower. When equipped with the six-speed manual transmission that comes standard on the Cruze L, LS, and LT trim levels, those numbers drop a bit to 29/41 mpg city/highway. And, if you want the ritziest version of the Cruze, the Premier, you’ll also pay a price in efficiency. Because of various EPA regulations on testing different trim levels, the automatic-only Cruze Premier receives its own ratings of 30/40 mpg.

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All of these numbers represent significant improvements over the fuel economy of the outgoing Cruze—which, incidentally, will still be sold as the Cruze Limited alongside the new model for the remainder of the 2016 model-year. Most automatic-transmission versions of the old Cruze could manage only 26/38 mpg city/highway in the federal test cycle, while the fuel-economy-special Eco model achieved 26/39 with an automatic and 28/42 with a six-speed manual. The efficiency improvement is largely due to the new 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that’s standard on all Cruzes, along with aerodynamic improvements and a lighter curb weight.

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2016 Chevrolet Cruze LT

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For now, that 1.4T engine is the only engine available in the new Cruze. Even more efficiency-minded compact-car shoppers will want to wait until Chevrolet installs a new 1.6-liter turbodiesel four-cylinder into the Cruze for the 2017 model year. Considering the 46-mpg EPA rating for the previous Cruze Diesel, an improvement the size of that on the gasoline version would knock right on the door of 50 mpg. It’s the new 40, as too many people say nowadays.

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