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Drive of your life this week…

the new Chevrolet Cruze Saloon

What is it? A sumptuous five door five seater cruising machine.

Who would want one? Any lady who loves to be seen cruising in her car yet needs the practicality of a saloon variant.                       

The exhilarating thrill: is the surprisingly quick off the mark 0-62 in just 8.5 seconds that is very quick for a sedate saloon car. The ride and handling is as smooth as silk thanks to the refined suspension system and little noise ricochets into the cabin meaning your favourite tunes from the radio/CD player with MP3 feedback can be heard without having the volume at full blast.

Wow factors to make the neighbours go green: start with the lovely flowing lines of the car tousling over the sculptured bonnet that cascades into the colour coded bumper with a smiley honeycomb grille, integrated fog lights and a gorgeous set of light clusters. 17 inch alloy wheels, body coloured door handles, door mirrors and body strips add more lashings of street ‘cred’ and anyone following you in the Cruze would notice the shapely rear end with another set of eye catching light clusters at the rear.

On the other hand… remember those few hot days we had in the summer? Well the air conditioning during that short period could have been a tad cooler and took ages to kick in.

Where would the sunglasses fit? In their own designated home that is a decent size pop up box on top of the dashboard large enough to take these bigger designer sunglasses that is in fashion.

Will it take the shopping? Oh one could shop till they dropped and still have room to do the weekly shop due to the massive deep wide luggage area.

To hide secret purchases use either the door pockets, the lockable deep glove box, the elasticated pockets behind the front seats or best, the deep concealed binnacle under the centre armrest.

Helping hands may light work thanks to automatic lights, automatic wipers, auto dimming rear view mirror, electric windows, electrically adjustable door mirrors, both front and rear fog lights, rear parking sensors and speed sensitive power assisted steering.

 Creature Comforts to luxuriate in are height adjustable leather clad steering wheel with remotes for the CD player and radio on one side with cruise control on the other, height adjustable front seats and electronic air conditioning. Optional extras on the Cruze include a sat nav system at £765 metallic paint £410 and an Executive pack comprising of leather upholstery, heated front seats and sat nav at £1500.

Its most annoying feature: that bizarrely with all the mod cons on cars these days and the fact that everyone loves their mobile phones, there is no Bluetooth connectivity.

The greatest gadget: are the independent fog lights that one simply presses to activate and best, to stop confusion over which one is the front and which one is the rear, the beam of light points left for the front and right for the rear. So remember right is rear.

Avoiding the costly repair shop is fool proof thanks to ABS that gives the ability to brake and steer thus avoid obstacles, ESP that will adjust each wheel to prevent skidding, Traction Control that will sort out the wheels so one does not need to steer into the skid and Brake Assist that will put more pressure on the brakes if it sensors the driver is not applying enough pressure.

Keeping your precious cargo safe: are driver and passenger airbags with a passenger de-activation switch, plus side and curtain airbags and side impact beams. In addition are height adjustable front seatbelts with pretensions and seatbelt reminders, height adjustable headrests with tilting function to reduce whiplash injuries, child proof locks on the rear doors, 3X3 point rear seatbelts and Isofix child seat restraint system on the two outer seats of the second row.

Avoiding it being nicked is like trying to nick the Queen’s diamond collection thanks to a Thatcham category 1 alarm, an engine immobiliser, remote central locking, an anti- theft interior movement sensor and an anti-theft incline sensor.

Star rating: 4.5/5 due to no Bluetooth that may see some naughty ladies illegally using their phones.

Consider: As there is only one variant that of the LTZ, possibly the automatic variant for those who prefer that to a manual.

Web link:

Jackie Violet
Motoring Correspondent 

At a Glance
Test Model: Chevrolet Cruze LTZ 2.0 VCDi (163PS)
RRP: £ 18,200
Transmission: 6-Speed Manual
0-62mph: 8.5 seconds
Top speed: 127 mph
Combined Fuel: 52.3 mpg
Insurance Group: 22E
CO2 emissions: 141g/km VED and £30
Horsepower: 163 hp @ 3800 rpm
Torque: 360 Nm @ 1750-2750 rpm



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