Automotive

Cruze Diesel will go from LA to Salt Lake on a single tank

Cruze Diesel will go from LA t...
The Cruze Diesel will be on sale for just over $24,000
The Cruze Diesel will be on sale for just over $24,000
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The new Chevrolet Cruze Diesel returns 52 mpg on the highway
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The new Chevrolet Cruze Diesel returns 52 mpg on the highway
The Cruze Diesel will be on sale for just over $24,000
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The Cruze Diesel will be on sale for just over $24,000

Even before the Volkswagen emissions scandal broke in 2015, diesel had a bad reputation in America. Drivers covering lots of motorway miles in Europe tend to favor it, but buyers in the US are all about gasoline in their cars and pickups. That's a shame, because diesel can't be beaten for long-haul efficiency, something the new Chevrolet Cruze Diesel proves with its EPA highway mileage rating.

With a miserly 1.6-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel under the hood, the new Cruze Diesel managed 52 mpg (4.5 l/100km) on the highway in EPA testing. Driven with a light right foot in ideal conditions, that means the car could cover around 700 miles (1,127 km) on a full tank of diesel, enough to get you from Los Angeles to Salt Lake City without filling up.

According to Chevrolet, that's enough to make the Cruze Diesel the most efficient non-hybrid on the highway. The car isn't quite as efficient in the city, returning 31 mpg (7.6 l/100km) for a combined figure of 37 mpg (6.4 l/100km). By way of comparison, the gas Cruze sedan returns 40 mpg (5.9 l/100km) on the highway and 30 mpg (7.8 l/100km) in the city, for a combined 35 mpg (6.7 l/100km).

The new Chevrolet Cruze Diesel returns 52 mpg on the highway
The new Chevrolet Cruze Diesel returns 52 mpg on the highway

Interestingly, the six-speed manual model is actually more efficient than the nine-speed auto offered alongside it. Given how tall the top ratios on modern automatic gearboxes are, and how much faster/more efficient eight and seven-speed dual-clutch gearboxes are than their self-shifting counterparts, we're not sure how Chevy has managed to reverse the order here.

Pricing for the Cruze Diesel kicks off at US$24,670, and a hatch will join the sedan later this year.

Source: Chevrolet

9 comments
Milton
They still make diesel?
VincentWolf
In about 10 years any EV will be able to go over 2500 miles on a single charge.
fb36
"but buyers in the US are all about gasoline in their cars and pickups": Is there any poll to support this? Isn't it possible it is because US car makers don't want to make diesel cars (in the US at least) for some reason?
Bob
I remember when a 1987 Ford Escort diesel also got 50+ mpg and could do the same thing. My 1989 Calais got 34+ mpg on gas which my new Camry can't beat on mileage or power. Even with the new turbochargers, there's not really that much progress since then. Only the bigger V8 engines like my newer Corvette with 430 hp and 27 mpg overall really show much improvement.
FabianLamaestra
I can get 710 miles p/tank from my 2003 VW jetta Diesel today, and it has a 1.9 engine. Just sayin'.
Jason Catterall
My old Audi 100 diesel could get almost 1000 miles to a tank on a long distance trip. I managed to make it to the south of France from Bristol in the UK. That was almost 30 years ago now. 700 miles? Meh...
John Sorensen
LA to Salt Lake City is only 688 miles on Interstate 15. My Ram 1500 pickup with the 3 liter turbo-diesel engine can go farther than that on a single tank, and STILL run circles around your Chevy Cruz.
VoiceofReason
fb36, there are a few factors in that. Diesels were killed in the US due to GM making the worst diesel engine in existence back in the 1980's, adding to that the price of fuel isn't as high in the US, where a small diesel car or truck would be of more value.
I am glad to see it turning around to a point. GM still has it's head buried as I can buy a diesel Colorado pickup IF I BUY NEARLY EVERY OPTION making the truck very expensive.
It's idiotic as Toyota and Nissan already make their normal pickups in diesel and have for decades. Before the Ford Ranger was killed in the US, you could get one if you wanted a gas motor but overseas you had to buy the diesel. They could have sold tens of thousands here with a diesel. The Ram eco-diesel was nearly impossible to get for a while.
Island Architect
It has a prettier face but that front wheel roll is ghastly.