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AutoGuide.com gathered six of the most significant new cars for the 2017 model year for our annual Car of the Year evaluations. This year, our contenders are the Hyundai Elantra, BMW M2, Volkswagen Golf Alltrack, Kia Optima, Ford Focus RS and 2017 Chevrolet Cruze. There was no hard price cap on this year’s entrants, but we tried to make sure none of them were extravagantly priced. We will release a new video on each contender every day leading up to Dec. 13, when we announce our winner. Stay tuned for our Crossover/SUV of the Year and Truck of the Year series, which is also coming soon!

The 2017 Chevrolet Cruze is a huge improvement over the last year’s model and is a very significant global model for the American brand. Available as both a sedan and a hatch and with gasoline and diesel-powered variants, its versatility as a model is fantastic, and without the Volkswagen Jetta TDI around any longer, it fills an important gap in the marketplace.

One of the Cruze’s best qualities is that it comes standard with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and is also available with 4G LTE connectivity, which is very impressive for an economy car. Its infotainment system is also responsive, attractive and easy to use. The Cruze also gets stellar fuel economy: the gas model is rated at about 32 mpg combined, while the diesel model is expected to surpass that very impressive rating.

Read more about the 2017 Chevrolet Cruze: AutoGuide.com Car of the Year Contender at AutoGuide.com.
 

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This is probably the worst review I've seen for it. There are tons of YouTube and magazine reviews out there that point out that other than the numb steering, it's one of the best cars in class besides the Civic. Only one or two called it underpowered despite it also having one of the quickest 0-60 times in class.

I would agree with the cloth seats being flat and relatively unsupportive compared to the 1st generation though.
 

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The Civic is definitely a solid effort by Honda after the lukewarm last generation - a friend has the new 2.0 liter. Very solidly put together and actually somewhat fun to drive (still don't like the transmission), but the styling inside and out just doesn't do it for me.

If cars sold based on auto journalist reviews though, the Mazda 3, 6, and CX-5 would probably be the sales champions in their respective classes.
 
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