Chevrolet has confirmed long-running rumors that it will bring its five-door Cruze model to the U.S. for the 2017 model-year.
Frequently seen running around the Motor City in thinly camouflaged form, the hatchback version of the Chevrolet Cruze was originally developed for the European market, where five-door models are as dominant as sedans are in the U.S. passenger car market.
The arrival of the Cruze five-door comes as more and more manufacturers rethink the potential U.S. market. It has long been accepted as gospel that Americans don’t like hatchbacks, but a number of recent offerings have challenged that assumption.
For his part, General Motors’ global product development chief recently called the original decision not to market a Chevy Cruze hatchback here “a pre-bankruptcy planning mistake.”
(Driving the production ready – almost – Chevrolet Bolt. For details, Click Here.)
Alan Batey, president of General Motors North America and Global Chevrolet, said trends favor the addition of the new model.
“With 9% market growth in small hatchbacks last year, it’s the perfect time to bring the Cruze Hatch to America,” said Batey.
The 2017 Cruze Hatchback is based on the same platform as the sedan model – which itself went through a complete redesign for 2016. The four-door model lost about 200 pounds of mass, helping it improve both mileage and performance.
(Click Here for details about Mary Barra adding “chairman” to her title.)
The hatchback version not only offers easy rear access but 18.5 cubic feet of cargo space – which grows to 42 cu.ft. with the rear seats folded down.
The 2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback boasts the same, 106.3-inch wheelbase as the sedan, but it has a unique roof and rear end structure, says the maker. The liftgate is framed by wraparound taillights and features an integrated spoiler.
Under the hood, the five-door will be motivated by a 1.4-liter turbocharged inline-four making 153 horsepower and 177 pound-feet of torque.
The hatch will be offered in just two of the four trim levels – LT and Premier – available for sedan buyers. The top-line Premier version will start at $23,995. That will include standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and an optional 4G LTE hotspot.
(To see more about GM’s $500 million investment in Lyft, Click Here.)
Look for the 2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback to reach U.S. showrooms by autumn.