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Chevrolet Cruze Eco
Cruze Eco gets better fuel economy than many popular hybrids

When most people think about green cars, they usually think of hybrids and EVs that are currently making headlines. The fact of the matter is that while most hybrid cars certainly get good fuel economy there are several subcompacts and compacts on the market that offer great fuel economy with standard powertrains.

Chevrolet earlier this year announced a new variant of its new compact car called the Cruze Eco. The Cruze Eco has been rated for 42mpg on the highway and offers 28mpg fuel economy in the city for 6-speed manual versions. An automatic transmission is also offered on the vehicle and it is rated for 26mpg in the city and 37mpg on the highway.

The Cruze Eco uses an Ecotec 1.4L turbocharged engine that produces 138hp and 148 lb-ft of torque between 1,850 rpm and 4,900 rpm. Chevy claim that that the motor was also designed with an eye towards being smooth and quiet.

Several features contribute to the fuel economy of the Cruze Eco including special low rolling resistance tires. The lightweight 17-inch alloy wheels and special tires helped shave 21.2 pounds total from the Cruze Eco compared to standard models with 16-inch wheels.

Chevy also spent lots of time in the wind tunnel to increase the aerodynamics of the Cruze Eco. Chevy says that over 500 hours of testing in the wind tunnel lead to a reduction in aerodynamic drag of 10% compared to non-Eco models. The Eco version has an underbody tray that guides air under the car and has a special grill with more closeouts to improve aerodynamics. The front air dam of the vehicle is lower and it has a special rear spoiler as well.

The Cruze Eco is the most fuel-efficient small cars around, beating out the fuel-sipping sub-compact Ford Fiesta rated for 40mpg, the Ford Focus rated for 35mpg (although the 2012 Focus is supposed to approach 40mpg), and most of the hybrids on the road including the Ford Fusion Hybrid, Nissan Altima Hybrid, and the Toyota Camry Hybrid.

The Cruze Eco will hit dealers in January at $18,895.

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RE: This isn't an efficient car...
By goku on 11/15/2010 8:39:22 AM , Rating: 2
Could you at least link to what the hell you're babbling about because doubling performance and increasing fuel economy by 50% is not something that can easily be done by modifying some software unless there was a serious flaw to begin with. It's true that the current tier 2 bin 5 emissions are quite strict in comparison with the LEV emissions in 1994 but that doesn't mean they're necessarily unwarranted. I think if they just changed the emissions standard to that of grams per mile instead of PPM (Parts per million), maybe we would see an accurate emissions picture instead of one that penalizes high fuel economy vehicles and helps those with poor fuel economy.

PPM essentially rewards vehicles that can make their pollution emissions a low percentage of total exhaust volume, even if that means an overall higher amount of emissions. Imagine a drop of Oil in a cup of water.. That would result in high PPM amount of oil in the water. Now imagine a CUP of oil in a swimming pool.. Yes, in terms of PPM, a cup of oil in a swimming pool would result in a lower PPM than a drop of oil in a cup of water but overall, you're releasing far more oil with a cup of oil than with a drop of oil. The PPM argument essentially says that it's not the amount of pollutants you release that matters but the amount of pollutants you release in the scope of total exhaust emissions.

With rules like this, a truck with a 6L diesel engine will actually pollute more than a Geo metro with a 1L engine even though they're held to the same emissions standard.

"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer

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