Report: Chevrolet Cruze To Get Diesel Engine As Early As 2013

By Jacob Brown | July 11, 2011
The Chevrolet Cruze will get a diesel engine as soon as 2013, according to Associated Press sources. With an engine certified to meet U.S. emissions regulations, the Cruze diesel, like diesel models already sold overseas, could see upwards of 50 mpg on the highway. While General Motors has provided no formal announcement has come from General Motors, two anonymous sources told the news source that the Cruze would soon come with a diesel engine in an effort to fight the ever-more-stringent Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards, which could reach between 47 and 62 mpg by 2025 depending on government regulations passed soon.
Sitting atop Chevrolet’s Cruze lineup overseas, the turbocharged diesel Cruze 2.0 VCDi achieves as high as 53 mpg (U.S. gallons) in extra-urban driving when optioned with a six-speed manual transmission while generating 163 horsepower and 265 lb-ft of torque. By comparison, the U.S.-spec Cruze Eco tops out at 42 mpg with a turbocharged 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine that pumps out 138 horsepower and 148 lb-ft of torque. The current fuel economy champ in the U.S., the Toyota Prius, nets 134 horsepower and hits 48 mpg on the highway.
Traditionally, General Motors has been hesitant to bring over its diesel engines because of the dirty stigma associated with them and the price premium for the efficient engines. But the AP reports that about 22 percent of all Volkswagen Golf and Jetta compacts are equipped with diesel engines, a largely untapped market in the U.S. It’s a market that GM, with increasingly strict U.S. efficiency regulations approaching, can no longer ignore, and a compressed natural gas version is a possibility, too. While very little else has been confirmed about the U.S. Cruze diesel, the sources mentioned that the car will be built in Lordstown, Ohio alongside the other U.S. models. Last month, the Cruze became the best-selling vehicle in the U.S., topping the perennial leader, the Toyota Camry, with about 25,000 units sold. Sources: Associated Press (via Plattsburgh Press-Republican), General Motors