50 MPG Chevy Cruze Diesel to be Sold, Built in U.S.
Chevrolet’s commitment to a fuel-efficient future – and support for U.S. manufacturing – were both in the news recently when GM announced it would build the 2013 Chevy Cruze diesel, expected to achieve about 50 mpg highway, at its plant in Lordstown, Ohio. The automaker also will invest $5.5 million in the facility to prepare for the new vehicle; it’s a necessary expense, since the team at Lordstown is currently running at near full capacity to keep up with demand of the gas-engined Cruze.
The popular compact was the best-selling vehicle in its segment in September, as well as through September, and has sold more than 212,000 units in its first 12 months in the U.S. marketplace. The diesel variant is slated to build on that success by representing yet another boost to Chevy’s ongoing efforts to improve the fuel economy of the Cruze lineup.
The Cruze Eco configured with a six-speed manual transmission already owns the highest fuel-efficiency mark of any gas-only vehicle sold in this country – a sterling 42 mpg – and that goes with impressive ratings of 28 mpg city and 33 mpg combined. But for the 2012 model year, Chevrolet engineers were able to squeeze even more miles per gallon out of the Cruze Eco outfitted with its six-speed automatic; the car is now up to 39 mpg highway, which represents a gain of more than 5 percent as compared to the 2011 model. Further, the peppy Cruze turbo received 2-mpg improvements across the board for 2012 and can deliver an EPA line of 26/38/30 with its six-speed autobox.
The next leap forward, the Cruze diesel, will get things jumping in the 2013 calendar year.