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NINETY EIGHT REGENCY

BEFORE U.S. DEBUT, 340,000 CHEVY CRUZES SOLD OVERSEAS

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BEFORE U.S. DEBUT, 340,000 CHEVY CRUZES SOLD OVERSEAS

By Andrew Ganz

Chevrolet’s upcoming Cruze sedan represents a major leap forward for the Detroit automaker in the compact car segment currently occupied by the dated Cobalt. Until it goes on sale later this year, however, the automaker’s core North American market has been denied the crucial sedan that has sold more than 340,000 units everywhere but at home.

GM announced this morning that it has sold 270,000 Chevrolet Cruze-badged sedans across the globe and an additional 70,000 Holden and Daewoo-badged variants in Australia and South Korea.

“Customers around the world have already made Cruze an international success, setting the stage for it here in the U.S.,” said Margaret Brooks, the automaker’s director of marketing for Chevrolet small cars, in a statement released to the media.

GM has never really clarified why the Cruze has taken so long to go on sale in North America. Sales are finally set to begin in September, about 18 months after the car debuted in Europe.

link:

http://www.leftlanenews.com/340000-chevrolet-cruzes-sold-before-reaching-u-s.html

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cavalier36    7

BEFORE U.S. DEBUT, 340,000 CHEVY CRUZES SOLD OVERSEAS

By Andrew Ganz

GM has never really clarified why the Cruze has taken so long to go on sale in North America. Sales are finally set to begin in September, about 18 months after the car debuted in Europe.

link:

http://www.leftlanenews.com/340000-chevrolet-cruzes-sold-before-reaching-u-s.html

I dont get why it took so long eiether. they should have imported some here prior to now until Lordstown was up and running. Just like they are doing with the Regal. They could have sold the Cobalt and Cruze together since the name is diffrent.

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hyperv6    774

The original concept was to sell both together and build them both at Lordstown at the same time. They have room to build to different lines in the same building there.

I had heard the delay was due to issue they wanted to address with the American market car. Not sure what they were but there were things after the Chapter 11 they felt and now could afford to change.

They just had a big celebration at a festival near Lordstown where they had a Ohio built Cruze on hand. They gave away one also that will be awarded once they are completed.

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I wonder if they wanted to get it right first because every launch at GM it critical at this point. It does feel now we are the last ones to get new global cars from GM. It seems they are released elsewhere first.

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regfootball    248

That's 340k beta testers before it hits the N.A. market. They wanted to make sure the bugs were worked out on a more forgiving audience.

kind of a sign of incompetence IYAM

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Drew Dowdell    5,134

kind of a sign of incompetence IYAM

The Asian manufacturers frequently do the same thing. Toyota knows that Japanese customers will never abandon them for a Chevy, no matter how bad they make the car.

We never got the first gen Pruis. We only got the second gen half way through it's product cycle. Corolla in the U.S. is generally 2-3 years behind the JDM release. The Fit, all of the Scions, and the Versa are all JDM leftovers.

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Cory Wolfe    263

The Asian manufacturers frequently do the same thing. Toyota knows that Japanese customers will never abandon them for a Chevy, no matter how bad they make the car.

We never got the first gen Pruis. We only got the second gen half way through it's product cycle. Corolla in the U.S. is generally 2-3 years behind the JDM release. The Fit, all of the Scions, and the Versa are all JDM leftovers.

One correction: We did, in fact, receive the first generation Prius in 2001, which, was about half way through its cycle (1997-2003).

Edited by blackviper8891

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Drew Dowdell    5,134

One correction: We did, in fact, receive the first generation Prius in 2001, which, was about half way through its cycle (1997-2003).

We're both right I think. It looks like the 2001 Pruis that we got was a refresh of the 1997-2000 model (US sheet metal, new engine) and they changed the model designation. I took it as a new model because it looks slightly different.

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daves87rs    349

That's 340k beta testers before it hits the N.A. market. They wanted to make sure the bugs were worked out on a more forgiving audience.

Yep.

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regfootball    248

considering how lax chevy was in this segment though, its easy to spin the 'we were sadly behind the 8 ball' into 'we took all sorts of extra time to make sure it was bug free'.........

the reality is it had more to do with GMNA not appropriating resources for North American production because of the sinking ship and bad marketing and management priorities.

the same comment applies to ford although in Ford's defense, the 012 Focus hits the US the same time as Europe. Ford skipped the EuroFocus current to leapfrog to the next one, yet many of you cried blasphemy to that. And the rehashed NA focus still sold anyways.

GM skips over a product already in production in Asia, AU etc....so the design and product were done. GM starved the segment here 2 extra years by being tight and not thinking it was an important segment to be current in.

That was two years later they had to pony up money to build it here vs when they should of. So really that is primarily what it was all about. Its only a side benefit that they were able to refine a couple things. a 125hp base engine does not sound like something that they spent two years painstakingly engineering more bugs or better performance out of.

basically it better be worth the two years, as far as the final product.

Edited by regfootball

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dwightlooi    259

Late or not, the Cruze has three fundamental problems...

  • Both in terms of styling, the Cruze stacks up well against the current Civic and Corolla. However, it doesn't look like a vehicle that is one full generation newer than these two -- at least not to the same degree that the current Civic was over the previous one. Both of these are at the very end of their model cycle. The Cruze may end up like the 2005 Cobalt in the sense that it was OK against the 2001 Civic and 1998 Corolla, but it became an also ran against the 2007 and 2006 cars. GM really needed a giant step forward in the segment and I am not sur3 the Cruze was that.
  • I am not sure if the expense and complexity of the 1.4 Turbo is worthwhile, given the dubious attitude the "my civic (or corolla) goes 300K miles requiring no fixes" economy car buyer may have towards a turbocharger. That, and the fact that the fuel economy gains against the 1.8 NA engine was tiny (on the order of 2 mpg) and only when outfitted with low rolling resistance tires. I have nothing against turbos, but most Civic buyers are not the performance oriented or technically savvy types. The first reaction "turbo" draws would be -- is it going to break? Given that a mid-size Sonata is getting 26/35mpg (EPA) with a 2.4 liter pulling more vehicular mass, I also seriously doubt the benefits of reducing displacement as a fuel economy driver. Personally, I wold rather they put the resources into improving the 1.8 such that it achieves the same economy goals without the complication of turbocharging and intercooling. The addition of Direct Injection to the 1.8 DOHC powerplant would probably do it. If not, a cam switching system on top of that -- which allows it to operate in Atkinson Cycle mode at low loads and torque requests -- will definitely bridge the 2 mpg divide. If they really want to, the can dump the DOHC head in favor of a lower friction SOHC "like" head with two concentric cams for independent VVT and it'll probably do even better.
  • While performance compacts in general are never the volume drivers, they are significant image drivers. There some Civic buyers who became buyers of their LX and EX Civics in part because of the image boost the Civic Si provided. The good old "DOHC VTEC" B16A and K20A engines sold the VTEC moniker, and the VTEC moniker sold Civics and Accords. The Cobalt was the performance leader in the segment with the SS, the SS is missing from the Cruze although there is no reason it should be since the engine and transmission will fit a Cruze even more easily than it fit the Cobalt. The 2.0 LNF DI Turbo engine with 260hp/260-lb-ft will drop right in, along with its accompanying 6T70 6-speed automatic transmission. But,

In short, I see the Cruze as a less than ideal combination of over moderation in some areas and futile forays in others. Not that it isn't a much better car than the Cobalt (it is), but it could have been better for the same R&D dollars and time horizon.

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dwightlooi    259

This is how I would have powered the Cruze for the US market.

  • 1.8 liter DOHC DI-VVT w/part time Atkinson Cycle + Otto Cycle -- ~160 hp & ~138 lb-ft -- BASE Model (87 Octane; 28/38 mpg)
  • 1.8 liter DOHC DI-VVT w/two stage Atkinson Cycle (20% and 33% compression stroke negation) -- ~130 hp & 115 lb-ft -- XFE Model (87 Octane; 30/42 mpg)
  • 2.0 liter DOHC DI-VVT Turbo -- ~275 hp & ~275 lb-ft (91 Octane) -- SS Model (91 Octane; 22/32 mpg)

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intrigued    9

I agree to a large extent. The biggest issue is the lack of substantial performance and fuel econemy difference between the 1.8 and the 1.4t expecially when the cost and complexity of the 1.4t come into the mix. The should ahve the 1.8 as the base the 2.0 TT for the SS as a halo car and maybe a 1.8 T or 1.6 DI Turbo like for qill have as the midlevel option for the focus a year after launch.

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regfootball    248

how's about just leaving the base cobalt engine in as the base cruze motor......145/155, proven. or even a basic 2.0 with like 140/150.

then perhaps a more refined 2.2/1.4 or 1.8 turbo with like 160-180 hp and ability to rev out. something to get more performance for not a lot more money.

an mpg model should have been like a 1.6 or yes maybe the 1.4 with a turbo and a cvt.

a high performance model of 220hp plus would be fine.

What i think happened. GM looked at building the engine for the cruze overseas. When it became politically neccessary to build the engine and car here, they wanted to limit their capital investment into just primarily one engine. The 1.4 would have additional application in the aveo and orlando. Not having a 1.8 may have been what made the numbers work to placate the UAW and keep jobs here.

A 1.8 turbo should not cost much more than a 1.4. But the 1.8 sure puts out more gusto and i doubt would suffer mpg concerns.

When the orlando was conceived to be here, my guess is they planned the 1.4 for it. Since then i bet they determined the 1.4 wouldn't cut it alone and so they ditched the whole program in the US. They didn't want to pony up for another engine to power the orlando and the cruze as an option.

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