Cruze-ing in the new Holden Cruze CD Diesel and CDX Petrol

Cruising in the new Holden Cruze - CDX Petrol auto shown

Cruising in the new Holden Cruze - CDX Petrol auto shown

Who would drive the new Holden Cruze?

The new Holden Cruze appeals to a range of people from ’empty nesters’ to first-car owners because of the affordable price tag.

The Cruze is particularly ideal for women who do a lot of city driving because of the practical size, fuel efficiency and stylish, good looks.

First impressions

The Cruze has the distinctly solid, yet sleek, Holden front and modern lines, which flow back to a nicely compact boot. It’s no wonder the Cruze has become a popular choice in the small-to-mid-size car range.

The interior is equally impressive with the contoured cloth sports seats in the front of the CD and heated leather seats in the CDX, chrome trim, and ice-blue illumination on the instrumentation against the dark tones (gives it a very sporty feel).

My favourite features

Quite a bit of thought has gone into the Cruze design by Holden and offers practical features such as:

* “Follow Me Home” illumination, which allows you to program your headlights to stay on for up to 3 minutes after you leave the car. That’s just enough time to let you open your front door at night and get safely inside. Very clever!

* The 400 litre-boot belies its compact exterior and has remote keyless entry, which is a big help when your hands are full.

* The multi-function steering wheel gives you the convenience of controlling the audio system and cruise control without taking your eyes off the road.

* MP3 Plug and Play functionality allows you have all the music you want to hear on your iPod played on the car audio system.

* Automatically locking doors provide added personal safety on the road.

* Reverse Park sensors in the CDX

* Have I already mentioned the heated leather seats in the CDX???

CDX Cruze auto interior - heated leather seats, chrome trim on dash and intrumentation cluster

CDX Cruze auto interior - heated leather seats, chrome trim on dash and intrumentation cluster

The Drive

The CD Diesel manual encountered some turbo lag on the lower gears but quickly gained power, particularly on the open road. The chug of the 2.0-litre diesel engine could barely be heard in the cabin, which offered a smooth, quiet ride.

The front seats were snug, comfortable and supportive and the manual transmission offered nice, smooth gear changes.

Although designed for safety, I found the Cruze CD compromised somewhat on visibility and could have used rear-park sensors, which come standard in the Holden Cruze CDX model.

The automatic transmission seemed to take a considerable amount of power from the CDX Petrol. The manual was lovely to drive with smooth gear changes, however still lacked the power of the diesel.

Both cars felt solid on bumpy roads and hugged curves and corners nicely. Maneuverability was exceptional for parking in tight spaces and city driving.

Fuel economy

Fuel economy is a big selling feature of the Holden Cruze with the CD Diesel using around 5.7 litres of fuel per 100km. The petrol model uses slightly more at 7 litres per 100km but still travels more efficiently and cheaper than other 4-cylinder cars.

Safety features

The Holden Cruze proudly boasts a 5-star ANCAP rating, which is the highest rating possible. All the essential, evasive safety acronyms are offered including ESC (Electronic Stability Control), 4-wheel disk brakes with ABS (Anti-Lock Brake System), Traction Control (TCS), Brake Assist (BA) and Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD).

Should you be involved in an accident, there are 6 airbags: front driver and passenger; dual-front-side; and dual-side curtain. The high-strength construction of the body includes front and rear crumple zones and reinforced single welded unit passenger safety cell.

Room for business and pleasure

The Holden Cruze is a comfortable ride for 5 people with reasonable leg- and head-room for front and rear passengers. There’s also ample space in the 400-litre boot for sports equipment, groceries and school bags.

60/40 split fold rear seats allow more space for larger items or holiday luggage. Handy storage compartments include the sunglasses holder in the front and front seatback pockets. There are 4 cupholders – 2 adjustable ones in the front centre console and 2 in the rear centre armrest – plus 4 bottle holders in each door pocket.

How ‘Green’ is the Holden Cruze?

CD Diesel (manual)

Overall rating:                                    3.5/5 stars
Fuel consumption – combined:   5.7 litres/100km
CO2 emissions:                                   149g/km
Air pollution rating:                         5/10 (10 being the best)
Greenhouse rating:                           7.5/10 (10 being the best)

CDX Petrol (manual)

Overall rating:                                    3.5/5 stars
Fuel consumption – combined:   7.0 litres/100km
CO2 emissions:                                   166g/km
Air pollution rating:                         7/10 (10 being the best)
Greenhouse rating:                           6.5/10 (10 being the best)

Rating from

Other things you should know

The Holden Cruze comes in 2 models – CD and CDX, which both look great in the each of the 8 colours offered. Think: Arctic White, Chilli Red, Carbon Flash Black, Mercury Silver, Iced Blue, Moroccan Blue, Light Gold, and Pewter Grey.

The CD and CDX model both offer the 4-cylinder, 1.8-litre ECOTEC engine; while the CD model offers a 2-litre Turbo Diesel option.

The price ranges from $23,990 for a Cruze CD Petrol manual to $28,990 for the CDX Petrol Auto. Metallic paint is extra.

The latest news to come from Holden is that they are introducing a diesel variant to the CDX in 2010.  That would definitely be my Cruze of choice.  The luxurious CDX interior combined with the power of diesel, in a manual of course!


1 Comment

  1. […] Cruze-ing in the new Holden Cruze CD Diesel and CDX Petrol October 2009 4 […]

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