Chevrolet Cruze launch in India on 12 October

Chevrolet would launch its premium sedan, the Chevrolet Cruze, in India on the 12th of October 2009.  The car would be positioned against the Honda Civic and the Toyota Corolla Altis in the Indian automobile market.

Update: Chevrolet Cruze launched: Price 10.99 to 12.45 lakhs

Photo: Chevrolet Cruze launch on 12 Oct
Photo: Chevrolet Cruze launch on 12 Oct

Teaser advertisements for Chevrolet Cruze already started appearing on television channels in India.  Consumer interest in the car is already rising, as we can see from the traffic for stories about the Chevrolet Cruze, on our website.

The Chevrolet Cruze would be launched in India in diesel and petrol versions.

Chevrolet Cruze rear picture: Honda Civic clone?
Chevrolet Cruze rear picture: Honda Civic clone?

The 1598cc, DOHC petrol engine of the Cruze would churn out 130 bhp, and the 2.0L, 1991cc, SOHC diesel engine churns out 150 BHP.  Those figures position the car in the same market as the Honda civic and the Toyota Corolla Altis.  In fact, the diesel version of the car would be more powerful and economical than the other two petrol cars. Honda recently launched a newer version of the Civic, but that is not likely to be great competition for the Chevrolet Cruze.

Chevrolet Cruze pic
Chevrolet Cruze pic

At this point, we can only guess at the exact prices for both the versions.  It is believed that the cars would be priced between Rs. 12 and 14 lakhs. There would be definitely an automatic version of the Cruze too, but we do not know if that will be launched on 12th October.

The Chevrolet car would be positioned above the Chevrolet Optra Magnum, which is a bit long in the tooth after having been around in India for the better part of the decade. The company does not currently have any sedan positioned above the Optra Magnum, and the Cruze fits the bill perfectly.

Video of the Chevrolet Cruze

Localisation content of the car is believed to be around 50 per cent thereby keeping prices down.  The diesel engine of the Chevrolet Cruze is believed to be the same unit as the one which is used in the Captiva, the SUV from the company.

There are some reports that on the day of the launch, the Chevrolet Cruze would only be available in the diesel version and a petrol version would be launched much later.

Several automobile magazines have already received the car for their initial driving impressions.

The Chevrolet Cruze is an extremely good looker, especially from the front and the sides.  However, the rear end of the car is a different story.  You can easily mistake it for the rear end of the Honda Civic.  The tail lights look extremely similar, and even the bumper line is a perfect copy.  I don’t think Honda civic owners are going to be very happy about that.

The difficulties of the company in the United States does not seem to have any effect On The plans for India.  The launch of the car is planned to capitalise on the upcoming festive season.

Chevrolet’s other cars in India currently are the Chevrolet Aveo, Chevrolet U-VA, Captiva SUV, and the small car Spark.

Everyone who have seen the car have reported that they have leaked the muscular looks of the car.  The car comes with 16 inch alloy wheels wearing tubeless 205/60 JK tyres.  According to initial reports, while the interiors of the car are attractive enough, they do not match up to the exterior.

For those who never bought the Civic because of its reputation for scraping the underside on the smallest speedbreaker, and never bought the Toyota Corolla because they thought it was to unexciting, this car would definitely looked like an attractive option.