Small hatchbacks are very popular with consumers and for good reason. They offer utility, extra cargo carrying ability, and they are stingy on gas. That’s a good combination for urban dwellers. This weekend, we drove the 2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback.
You’ll like the way the small hatch sips gas and how its stylish cabin has a surprising amount of room for you, your cargo, and your passengers. The upper trim 2017 Chevy Cruze Hatchback Premier has a lot of good qualities.
The big news is a new hatchback body style debuts on the Cruze, and we tested this new compact hatch with much enthusiasm. It also comes standard with a suite of parental watchdog parameters called Teen Driver mode.
Features & Options
The 2017 Chevy Cruze Hatchback Premier ($23,945) comes standard with upgraded headlights, LED running lights, heated mirrors, steering-wheel-mounted phone and audio controls, a rear center armrest with cupholders, and a six-speaker audio system with satellite radio.
The hatchback also gets a cargo cover and rear spoiler.
The Premier adds keyless ignition and entry, heated front seats, an eight-way power driver’s seat, and remote engine start. The Cruze Premier also features 17-inch wheels, an upgraded rear suspension, chrome exterior accents, ambient interior lighting, illuminated vanity mirrors, a heated steering wheel, leather upholstery, and a height-adjustable front passenger seat.
The Driver Confidence package ($790) added rear parking sensors and blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert. It also comes with automatic high-beam headlight control, forward collision warning, and lane departure warning and intervention.
The Enhanced Convenience package ($865) throws in an auto-dimming rearview mirror, automatic climate control, heated rear seats, wireless charging, and a 110-volt, household-style power outlet. Total MSRP including destination: $26,870.
Stepping inside the Cruze compact reveals a stylish cabin that features high-quality materials and lines unlike any Chevy compact in the past. The 8-way power adjustable bucket seats are comfortable, come heated, and a tilt/telescoping steering wheel makes it easy to get comfortable on any commute.
The Premier comes with the 7-inch touchscreen and integrates Chevy’s MyLink infotainment system, which employs Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for a new-generation of buyers to enjoy a fully integrated smartphone experience.
The Cruze hatchback offers up a large backseat, making the Cruze’s interior functional for carrying passengers, sports equipment, and other cargo. Chevy says the Cruze hatchback has 18.5 cubic feet behind the second row and 47.2 cubes with the seats folded down.
Engine & Fuel Mileage
The 2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback is powered by a turbocharged 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine, rated at 153 horsepower and 177 lb-ft. of torque. Our Cruze tester came with the optional six-speed automatic transmission that sends power to the front wheels.
The automatic transmission comes bundled with an automatic engine stop-start feature to save fuel when the car isn’t moving. EPA fuel-mileage estimates are 28/37 city/highway and 31 combined with the automatic.
The Chevy Cruze hatch gets high marks for its utility and comfort on the commute, but for its stylish cabin too. On the road, the 1.4-liter turbo is an adequate performer, especially in the city and other urban environments. The stop-start feature on the automatic models was a bit annoying when we were in heavy city traffic, however.
It shuts the engine off when you come to a stop and then there’s a slight delay when you step on the gas.
We had to deliver a package to a customer that lived down a twisty, narrow mountain road this week. It was the ideal way to test the Cruze in a road-circuit like environment. The hatchback is an impressive handler in the tight corners and inspires driver confidence when pushing it harder through those corners. The turbo provides extra power when needed and it ranks a 6.5 on the fun-to-drive meter.
The ride offers up an overall compliant feel on the highway and the suspension soaked up the rough mountain road fairly well. Overall, the Cruze left us with a satisfying driving experience.
The 2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback Premier is a compelling compact hatch for city commuters. The Cruze glides down the highway with surprising levels of refinement for the class. It comes attractively trimmed inside, and the Cruze offers easy everyday operation and practicality.
Denis Flierl has invested over 25 years in the automotive industry in a variety of roles. Follow his work on Twitter: @CarReviewGuy