The Chevrolet Cruze is a compact, four-door sedan that’s been off the North American market for a short while. The vehicle was still available in other markets and is set to make its comeback with an updated model for 2021 and 2022. The last couple of production years also saw hatchback versions of the Cruze, and this will continue with the new upcoming models. Prices are slated to start at around $18,000 for the sedan and $19,600 for the hatchback.
2019 models of the Cruze were powered by a 1.4-liter, turbocharged engine that produced around 153 horsepower. It can reach 60 miles per hour in just about 8.4 seconds. These numbers are projected to be the same for the new 2021 models. Interestingly, Chevy also offered a 1.6-liter turbo-diesel engine in 2019 that offered 240 pound-feet of torque. This is a rarity for this class of vehicle in North America.
One of the top-selling points of the Cruze is its excellent fuel economy. The gasoline engines will get you around 32 miles per gallon. The diesel-powered Cruze has a combined fuel-economy rating of 37 miles-per-gallon. The Cruze should comfortably accommodate up to five adults with possible room for a fifth passenger.
The latest versions of the Cruze are adding on new safety features and a lot of modern technology. They offer driver-assist features such as blind-spot alert, front collision alert, and a tire-pressure monitor. Other notable features for 2021 will include a reverse camera, traction control, stability control, and an alarm system. The interior is spacious with plenty of head and legroom for your passengers as well as space for your cargo.
The Top Three Alternatives to Chevy’s Cruze
The 2019 Chevrolet Cruze is an excellent car in either the sedan or hatchback configuration. With that said, there are some good alternatives to also consider. This is especially true if you want a 2021 model but don’t want to wait for the official release date of the 2021 Chevrolet Cruze. Here are three of the best alternatives that are currently on the market:
1. Kia Forte
Just like the Chevy Cruze, the Kia Forte is a compact, four-door sedan that seats four. It has a similar price range to that of the Cruze with a starting MSRP of $18,885 for the base model and $24,255 for the sporty, top-tier trim level. The Forte will come equipped with one of two different powertrains.
There’s a 1.6-liter four-cylinder turbo model that produces 201 horsepower and the standard 2.0-liter model that cranks out around 147 horses. The turbocharged version can get you to 60 miles-per-hour in just 6.7 seconds. The standard engine is more efficient with a combined fuel-economy rating of 33 miles-per-gallon.
So, what makes the Kia Forte the top pick? Its price and wide array of standard features make it an excellent value. While the Forte is more about value than performance, the GT models are no slouch and are extremely fun to drive.
The exterior design is more sleek and elegant than what one would normally see on a vehicle in this price range. The interior has a clean, minimalist design with comfortable seats and an excellent infotainment system with an 8-inch touchscreen. For performance, looks, and cost, the Forte is hard to beat.
2. Honda Civic
Honda’s Civic often makes it into the top three on lists of the best-selling cars in North America. Like the Cruze, the Civic comes in a four-door sedan configuration. Honda also offers a hatchback version. Both are in the compact class of vehicles, just like the Chevy Cruze.
The Civic has a more aggressive design, especially for the hatchback models. It’s a sporty and futuristic look. Many love it, but some may prefer a more conservative design. The sedans start at $21,700 with the top sedan trim level beginning at $28,300. It’s more expensive, but not too far above the cost of a Chevy Cruze. For the reliability and performance, the extra cost will be well worth it for some.
The base-model sedan has a 158-horsepower, 2.0-liter engine. The Civic Touring model has a turbocharged engine that produces 180 horsepower. For the ultimate in performance, the Civic Type-R hatchback produces a massive 306 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque.
It can go from 0 to 60 in just 5.15 seconds. All of that power will cost you, however, as the Type-R hatchback starts at $38,895. If you prefer efficiency to power, the base-model sedan gets around 36 miles per gallon. The Civic comes equipped with all of the latest driver-assist technology and one of the best infotainment systems on our list.
3. Hyundai Elantra
The latest Hyundai Elantra is yet another compact, four-door sedan. It has a similar appearance to the Chevy Cruze, but the overall design is more bold and modern. The lines and body curves are unique and almost remind one of a high-tech plane fuselage.
They add to the car’s sleek look, but also are functional, adding to the aerodynamics of the design. The Elantra is similar in size to the Cruze, both on the inside and the outside. It can comfortably seat four. The Elantra starts at $19,650 with the highest trim level starting out at $25,450, so the price range is similar as well.
The Hyundai Elantra is powered by either a 2.0-liter four-cylinder or a 1.6-liter turbocharged engine. The basic engine produces 147 horsepower while the turbocharged model makes 201 horses. The base engine has a combined fuel economy rating of 37 miles per gallon.
The turbocharged engine is the faster of the two with an acceleration time of 7.3 seconds to reach 60 miles-per-hour. The real reason to pick the Elantra over its competition lies in its overall value. Even with the base trim level, Hyundai has packed this car full of standard features.
There’s a 10.3-inch display for the gauge cluster and an 8-inch touchscreen display for the infotainment system.
Nine More Cars Similar to the Chevrolet Cruze
The Toyota Corolla is one of the top-selling cars in North America. Toyota has one of the best reputations in the industry for building long-lasting and reliable vehicles. The Corolla can seat four or five people and comes in both four-door sedan and hatchback configurations. The car’s size and exterior design are similar to that of the Chevy Cruze. It provides a smooth and comfortable ride.
The interior design of the Corolla is basic with a lot of extra room in the back. There’s a 1.6-liter engine that produces 139 horsepower and a 2.0-liter that makes 160 horses. There’s also a hybrid model that can get you up to 53 miles per gallon. The fastest engine reaches 60 at 7.1 seconds. The Corolla starts at $20,225 and can reach up to $28,310.
Another option from Honda is Insight. This is a compact sedan like the Chevy Cruze. It’s similar in size and can seat up to four or five people. It’s a bit more expensive than the Cruze, starting at $23,130. The highest trim level starts at $29,040. One of the things that set Insight apart from the Cruze is its hybrid powertrain.
The Honda Insight gets an amazing 52 miles-per-gallon in combined driving on the highway and in the city while using both gasoline and electric power. This hybrid powertrain produces 151 horsepower and can get up to 60 miles per hour in just 7.7 seconds. The Insight offers an upscale interior with impeccable craftsmanship and a conservative yet elegant exterior design.
The Nissan Sentra has one of the boldest and most unique designs of all the cars on this list. It’s a four-door sedan just like the Chevy Cruze, but its exterior design is more akin to a sports car. The front grille is big and bold and the headlights have a slim, aggressive design. The top is black in contrast with the body color.
The Sentra has room for five and costs between $19,460 and $21,800 depending on the trim level. The prices can get even higher depending on the packages and options you choose. The Sentra is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 147 horsepower. It goes from 0 to 60 miles per hour in about 8.3 seconds. The Sentra has a combined fuel-economy rating of 33 miles-per-gallon.
The Volkswagen Jetta has a similar exterior style to the Chevy Cruze. It’s another small sedan with four doors. The interior offers a sophisticated design with modern gauge clusters and a large touchscreen for the infotainment system. The design is ergonomic with all of the controls within easy reach of the driver. The Jetta seats four or five people.
The Jetta has a price range between $18,995 and $28,045. It comes equipped with a turbocharged 4-cylinder that produces 147 horsepower, which is just shy of what the Cruze can do but still very comparable. It can take you from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 7.7 seconds and has a combined fuel economy rating of 38 miles per gallon.
Subaru’s Impreza comes in a four-door sedan version that’s similar in size and style to the Chevy Cruze. Subaru also offers a hatchback variation. The exterior is attractive enough while the interior design is simple and basic. This little car can seat up to five people and costs between $18,795 to $26,395. The starting cost is very comparable to that of the Chevy Cruze.
The Impreza is equipped with a four-cylinder engine that produces 152 horsepower and 145 pound-feet of torque. It can get to 60 miles per hour in 9 seconds. All-wheel drive is standard on all models. An Impreza with a CVT transmission will get 28 miles per gallon in the city and 36 miles per gallon on the highway.
The Mazda 3 is a compact sedan that offers all-wheel drive for better handling and good traction in all weather conditions. It’s similar in size and appearance to the Chevy Cruze. Like the Cruze, it has room for four and perhaps five people to squeeze into it. The trunk size is similar to that of the Cruze as well.
The base model starts at $20,650 while the top trim starts at $32,600. At the top end is a turbocharged engine that produces 250 horsepower with a 0-60 time of 5.6-seconds. The base engine is slower at only 8.1 seconds, but it does get up to 31 miles-per-gallon in combined driving in the city and on the highway.
The Volvo S60 is similar to the Cruze in that it’s a compact sedan of comparable size. It seats four to five people and has unusually comfortable and supportive seats. The exterior design is simple while the interior is posh and classifies this vehicle as a luxury car. The cost range is between $38,950 to $64,800, significantly higher than the price of a Chevy Cruze.
Volvo’s S60 gets amazing acceleration from all three of its available powertrains. The top engine is turbocharged and also uses an additional electric motor to produce 400 horsepower and 472 pound-feet of torque. It can get you to 60 miles-per-hour in just 5 seconds flat and has a combined fuel-economy rating of 30 miles per gallon. It can get up to 69 miles per gallon when running on a combination of gasoline and electric power.
Tesla Model 3
When it comes to the class of small sedans, the Tesla Model 3 offers something unique. It’s technically a mid-sized sedan, but it’s on the smaller side of that designation, not too much larger than a Cruze. The design is sleek, sporty, and downright futuristic. This goes for both the outside and the interior. The powertrain is futuristic as well, as this is an all-electric vehicle with dual motors.
The Model 3 has room for five to ride comfortably. It has a range of 353 miles on a single charge. The standard all-wheel-drive makes for excellent handling, and the electric power means instant torque and breathtaking acceleration. The Model 3 can get you to 60 miles-per-hour in just 3.1 seconds and has a top speed of 162 miles-per-hour. This is by far the fastest car on this list, but it will cost you starting at $39,990.
Last but not least is the Nissan Versa. This is a small, four-door, five-seat sedan. Its size is comparable to the Cruze. It has a lot of the same features too, such as lane departure warning, blind-spot warning, and a tire-pressure monitor. It starts at just $14,980, making it one of the most economical vehicles to purchase on this list. The highest trim level starts at just $18,390.
The low cost and a high number of features make this car one of the best values in its class. The Versa is powered by a 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine that makes 122 horsepower and 114 pound-feet of torque. It has a combined fuel economy rating of 35 miles per gallon. While there are a lot of convenience features and driver-assist technologies in the Versa, the interior is very basic and the exterior design is simple, likely to keep costs down.
The Chevrolet Cruze is an excellent vehicle no matter which body style or trim level you choose. The future looks bright for the Cruze with the new models set to make their debut for 2021 and 2022. The small sedan market is a large one, however, so the Cruze is certainly not the only good choice out there.
These twelve vehicles are similar to the Chevy Cruze, but each also offers some unique features. There should be something here on our list to appeal to just about anyone’s tastes and specific needs.