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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi folks.

My wife and I test drove each of the cars in the subject today, except for the Elantra (dealership didn't have one w/ a manual transmission). I realize comparing the Prius against the others is kind of an apples to oranges situation, so let's not bother (unless you really want to chime in).

The Cruze, Focus (2012) and Elantra really are fighting for the same market space. I realize posting this question here might result in biased answers, but I'll ask anyway:

Have you driven either the 2012 Focus or the Elantra? Were they options for you before you bought your Cruze? How do you feel they compared?

FWIW - we'd be purchasing the Eco Cruze, w/ manual tranny.

Thanks!
 

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My only real consideration was the elantra, and my personal bias is towards cruze, of course but this is because I liked the exterior, and interior styling over the elantra, that is the main reason I got the cruze it just felt like higher quality than the elantra, and the diff in mpg was negligible so I got the one I thought felt better. I don't know about the focus, I looked at them, but did not take them out.

I was coming from a car that got 17.4mpg so I figured anyone of those three would have been a good choice, so I really went off of looks and interior quality.

Oh one more considertion if you have a family, the Cruze comes with 10 airbags, don't know if that will effect your decision or not, but for me it was just an added bonus.
 

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I drove all three, Focus was nice but I just didn't "feel it", plus I don't really like the overall look of the car. Elantra was a nice car, but didn't have quite the interior as the Cruze. Mileage wasn't a deciding factor for me. I had to love the appearance of the car upon first viewing and the way the cabin felt. Overall the Cruze won, better look, better feel while driving, most ergonomic for me and better fit and finish of interior than either the Focus and Elantra I drove.
All 3 are good cars, and I'm sure you will be happy with your decision.
 

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Yeah the focus just doesn't do it in the looks department, and even though it is a 2.0l it still get's around the same mpg, it is really going to come down to test driving them, how it feels to you, and what you like about looks. Looks really did win me over.
 

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I have the eco with a manual and I am really impressed. I did not drive the focus. My biggest decision was between the Civic and the Cruze. The Elantra has gotten good reviews and you cannot argue with the warranty. I just did not like the look of the car nearly as much as the Cruze. The Cruze felt like a bigger car when I drove it. The Cruze was hands down the best on the interior and it seemed to be much more car for the money. I liked the reliability of the civic but the interior was cheap and the car is not very good looking. I went with the Cruze and crossed my fingers on reliability. So far the car has been everything I hoped for. Some people have posted very impressive MPG numbers with the manual Cruze eco. I driving mine pretty hard and almost exclusively city I am getting between 28 and 29 MPG. I can pretty much guarantee you won't get worse than that and the mellow highway drivers are getting the high 30s to low 40s.
 

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I think it may depend what you are looking for. If your looking for fuel efficiency I'd pick the Cruze Eco over the Focus or Elantra. My eco continues to impress me every fill up. My current take is getting 43 MPG and it is half city half highway. I have yet to do an entire highway drive with a tank but from what my numbers show I could easily get 50 mpg or more. This was the reason I picked the cruze
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I think it may depend what you are looking for. If your looking for fuel efficiency I'd pick the Cruze Eco over the Focus or Elantra. My eco continues to impress me every fill up. My current take is getting 43 MPG and it is half city half highway. I have yet to do an entire highway drive with a tank but from what my numbers show I could easily get 50 mpg or more. This was the reason I picked the cruze
If we were to actually get that kind of mileage (at least 40), it would be a no-brainer for us.

You actually get 43, and that's not all highway driving? Do you do anything special to achieve such numbers?
 

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I test drove the Elantra, because it is cheaper and the finance rate was a little better than Chevy's. I didn't like the steering feel of the Hyndai, way too light for my taste. The manual tranny linkage seemed rough and the engine was pretty loud. Not a bad choice, but I felt the Cruze has a more mature look and feels a lot bigger and more solid.
 

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I love the focus, but when my roommates were shopping for their eco car, the focus wasnt manual and that was a must....Otherwise they would of bought that. But they are getting very similar mileage in the 40's. I heard a rumor of a manual focus SFE but that probably wont be till next year.
 

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If we were to actually get that kind of mileage (at least 40), it would be a no-brainer for us.

You actually get 43, and that's not all highway driving? Do you do anything special to achieve such numbers?

I purchased a scangauge which has really helped me fine tune my driving for to obtain the best mileage. I wouldn't say I do anything special. I accelerate slowly, I do the speed limit, leave distance to avoid braking, and coast to red lights. Overall I've just slowed down though compared to my last car. The scangauge helped me realized how much as a hard acceleration was using and figure out the best speed for fuel efficiency. It shows engine load, instant fuel usage, average trip usage, average tank usage, and boost pressure. I try to keep the boost low, keep the instant fuel economy at a certain level which will bring each trip average to the level I want which brings each tank to the level I want. My current tank is at 5.4 l/100km (43 mpg). I have an Eco 6MT. The automatic won't get the same mileage.
 

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Like audog above, I drove all three. I have a standard test loop I do on a really brutal road to see how the cars fare in a worst case scenario.

For perspective, I have three primary requirements. 1) safety, 2) quiet and 3) refined ride. The rest is secondary.


Elantra:
I test drove the Elantra just days after it came on the market. I had already driven the new Sonata twice and really liked it, but I don’t need something that large. After the Sonata, I was really expecting Hyundai to do right by the Elantra. What a let down. It was surprisingly loud, with a 'tin can' quality. The steering had zero feel (my only gripe about the Sonata as well). And, the ride was 'jiggly'.


Focus:
I wanted to try a manual Focus, but they didn't have any on the lot. So, I drove an SE auto. I think there was something wrong with that car as there was a lot of drivetrain noise coming from the left front. Otherwise, it drove OK. But, it let some road noise in and didn't ride as well I would have liked on the rough road on my test circuit. Power was decent, but the transmission (dual clutch auto) wasn't very smooth around town.


Cruze:
For my requirements, the Cruze outclasses both the Elantra (by a wide margin) and the Focus (by a smaller margin). I haven’t driven an Eco, so I'll share my experience with the 1LT (turbo 1.4 with auto). As others have stated, the interior is exceptionally quiet and the ride rather refined. The Cruze also outscores the Focus and Elantra on available crash tests. While it is a little low on power, the Cruze has the most refined power delivery of the three. And, on the turbo models, an inexpensive custom tune is all it takes to rectify the power issue. As a bonus, the Cruze also handles pretty well.


The verdict:
As biased as I am against GM, I was really surprised to find the choice was so clear… I am going to purchase a Cruze. Just waiting to see what the changes for 2012 bring to the table before plunking down the cash.
 

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We test drove the Camry, Corrolla, and Focus before trading in our 4Runner. We went for the Cruze Eco based on its looks, interior comfort, mileage, and safety. The Cruze had a better feel to it overall.
 

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I was looking forward to buying the Focus since I first saw them at the auto show 2 years ago. Well I finally got to try one and there was a lot of road and tire noise. Also the only ones I could find were the S or SE models and to get the SEL with comparable equipment to my 2LT ran about $2000 more. Haven't had any problems other than disappointing MPGs and the sound system leaves a lot to be desired. I wanted to buy an American made car and the Elantra is 100% Korean, so I eliminated them from the start..
 

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I test drove all of the cars listed in the subject line. except the Prius.

The Ford Focus was one of the primary contenders but after researching OnStar I liked it better than the Microsoft Sync. In addition, I liked the styling of the Cruze better, both interior and exterior.

The Hyundai Elantra was also a really nice car. However, I just dod not feel comfortable with it. Hard to explain, but when I got into the Cruze, it felt like a good fit.

Plus this being my 4th Chevrolet, 3rd out of the last 4 cars, there was a sense of brand loyalty.
 
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