Leave it to GM to launch a great-looking hatch that Europeans would certainly have loved after they pulled the Chevrolet brand from the Old Continent, but at least they do get the original, the Opel Astra.
"With 9 percent market growth in small hatchbacks last year, it’s the perfect time to bring the Cruze Hatch to America," said Alan Batey, president of General Motors North America and Global Chevrolet. He added a bunch of nice-sounding words crafted by GM's communication department, such as "fresh, distinctive styling."
The Cruze Hatchback was officially unveiled a few days ago, but we needed an excuse to show you these photos we snapped at the 2016 North American International Auto Show. While we know you're here for the photos, we might as well do our job and tell you a little bit about the surprisingly handsome hatch.
First off, while it looks European - especially since it's pretty much a rebadged Opel Astra - it's quite large by European standards. One quick look over the spec sheet tells us that this new model has the same 106.3 inch (2.7 meters) wheelbase as the sedan. It also boasts 18.5 cu ft (524 liters) of cargo space behind the rear seats, while folding them will increase that volume to 42 cu ft (1,189 liters).
Compared to the sedan, the hatchback obviously features a reworked rear-end, with wraparound taillights and an integrated roof spoiler. And when you compare it to its previous generation, you'll notice that it's over 200 pounds (91 kg) lighter.
The car comes standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility and has available 4G LTE with Wi-Fi hotspot. Also available are a heated steering wheel and heated front and rear seats. Safety-wise, the Cruze Hatchback can be fitted with Lane Keep Assist, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Side Blind Zone Alert and Rear Park Assist.
The Cruze hatchback will go on sale in the fall of this year. Cruze is Chevrolet’s best-selling car globally, and it has helped the brand increase its share in the segment from 5.8 to 9.4 percent.