Chevrolet Cruze Station Wagon 1.7 VCDi LTZ 130PS
Chevrolet car review: LUKE MADDEN
What is it?
DESPITE the connotations with big American gas-guzzlers, Chevrolets in UK and Europe are anything but.
In fact, if you’re a football fan, you’re more likely to have come across Chevrolet as shirt sponsor of Manchester United.
Among the cars that Chevrolet offers company car drivers is the Ford Focus-sized Chevrolet Cruze SW. This is the estate variant of the Cruze family (there’s a hatchback and a saloon in the range).
The Chevrolet Cruze SW is based on exactly the same platform as the Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer. It’s got a fairly large 500-litre boot and comes with a choice of four petrol and diesel engines. You won’t find it as sharp to drive as a Ford Focus Estate but the Cruze SW feels refined, grown-up and great value.
The Cruze Station Wagon is available in three trim levels with prices starting from £15,375.
- We like the way the Cruze SW looks. Compared to the slightly awkward looking hatch or saloon variants, the SW design works, including Chevrolet’s famous double-level grille and bow tie badge.
- The interior feels upmarket and well built, with gloss black inserts and brushed metal accents. It’s far from what you’d normally expect from Chevrolet.
- The SW is all about practicality and while the 500-litre boot is trumped by the Golf Estate, it’s certainly big enough. Clever touches like a sculpted parcel shelf featuring three separate sections maxmimise usable space, too.
- A 1.7-litre VCDi diesel engine is the pick of the range and comes with 129bhp. That’s good for a 0-62mph time of 10.4 seconds.
- Refinement from all of the engines is good and the ride is comfortable. That helps make long distance motorway journeys far more bearable.
- If you do go for the 1.7-litre VCDi engine you’ll get company car-friendly CO2 emissions of 119g/km and 62.7mpg.
- The Cruze SW is good value, with a generous list of standard equipment but a price that undercuts many of its rivals.
- The Cruze SW’s handling isn’t great. The steering feels a bit vague and light, and there’s a fair bit of body roll in the corners.
- Both the 1.6-litre and 1.8-litre petrol engines feel too sluggish for every day use. Their running costs are far higher than the diesels, too.
- And although the 2.0-litre diesel engine feels punchy and smooth, it’s only available with an automatic gearbox. That hampers fuel efficiency, CO2 emissions and pushes up the price-tag – and company car tax you pay.