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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello! I'm looking to buy a Chevy Cruze within the year. Right now I would like a 2015 LT or LTZ, but am open to other years/trims, especially if the mileage is low.

I am looking to use the Cruze as my daily driver to work and school, once I retire my current car (1999 Grand Am SE with 251,xxx miles).

I'm hoping y'all can give me some honest pros and cons of having a Cruze, and what it might feel like to come to the Cruze from a late 1990's/early 2000's GM vehicle. Overall I have enjoyed my Grand Am, but it is starting to get pretty old and tired.

My dad is a mechanic specializing in GM vehicles and I have a decent amount of knowledge myself, so maintenace issues won't be too big a deal, I just want to know what to expect.

Thanks in advance!
 

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My :2cents: would be that you'll love the Cruze ... especially compared to your Grand Am. I enjoyed my 2012 Eco 6MT, and still wish I had one to use as my daily commuter car. I'm not sold on the new body style yet, and don't like that they did away with the Eco trim level and Manual Transmission overdrive gear ratios. If I could find a good, low mileage '12 or '13 Eco 6MT again, I might actually purchase one, but highly unlikely for at least another year or two now after my Camaro purchase. Best of luck, because I highly doubt you'd be disappointed with any Cruze ... As long as it has the 1.4 Turbo engine, and not the 1.8 (again, my :2cents:)
 

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Welcome to the forum!
You'll probably like the Cruze no matter what. But if you get a 6-speed manual, you'll LOVE the Cruze. Find one with a 6-speed manual! :D
 

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Welcome! I went from a Grand Am to a Cruze myself. Best move I've made, totally worth it. I know quite a few people on here have moved from a GA to a Cruze.

Just curious, did you happen to be on the Grand Am Owners Club forums?
 

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Agree with that guy ^, 6 speed manual ftw. It lets you make the most of what little power is there.

The 1.4T is a good little engine. It's a torquey thing down low and gets fantastic MPG when paired with a manual. It's no V6, but coming from a car with 240 hp to one with 140, I find I'm not wanting a whole lot more in the primarily city driving that I do.

That said, it's one of the best highway and long trip cars I've owned - the torquey engine helps here too. No problem with mountains or hills in 6th gear, and it's happy buzzing along with traffic for a small car (not something I can say about some others in the same class).

Another benefit to having a tiny engine - it's EASY to work on!
 

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Agree with that guy ^, 6 speed manual ftw. It lets you make the most of what little power is there.

The 1.4T is a good little engine. It's a torquey thing down low and gets fantastic MPG when paired with a manual. It's no V6, but coming from a car with 240 hp to one with 140, I find I'm not wanting a whole lot more in the primarily city driving that I do.

That said, it's one of the best highway and long trip cars I've owned - the torquey engine helps here too. No problem with mountains or hills in 6th gear, and it's happy buzzing along with traffic for a small car (not something I can say about some others in the same class).

Another benefit to having a tiny engine - it's EASY to work on!
Agreed. First reason I began considering trading the Cruze on my mustang I have now was wanting a manual. At first I strongly considered trading into a different manual Cruze. Decided to go big or go home though as I've always wanted the stang. But that's besides the point. The only thing that kept me from loving the Cruze was an auto. I think it would've been a really fun daily with a manual.


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I love my Cruze LT (automatic) and that's coming from a (spoiled) guy with a 465 HP Corvette and 1969 Z/28 Camaro. Just took my first interstate trip down to Bowling Green, KY over the weekend. The little beast had no problem running 70+ mph and got great mileage. The manual would be more fun to drive, but the auto isn't too shabby. The little 1.4T really impresses me for what it is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Welcome! I went from a Grand Am to a Cruze myself. Best move I've made, totally worth it. I know quite a few people on here have moved from a GA to a Cruze.

Just curious, did you happen to be on the Grand Am Owners Club forums?
I was on a Grand Am owners club forum, but I didn't post very much!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Agree with that guy ^, 6 speed manual ftw. It lets you make the most of what little power is there.

The 1.4T is a good little engine. It's a torquey thing down low and gets fantastic MPG when paired with a manual. It's no V6, but coming from a car with 240 hp to one with 140, I find I'm not wanting a whole lot more in the primarily city driving that I do.

That said, it's one of the best highway and long trip cars I've owned - the torquey engine helps here too. No problem with mountains or hills in 6th gear, and it's happy buzzing along with traffic for a small car (not something I can say about some others in the same class).

Another benefit to having a tiny engine - it's EASY to work on!
That all sounds great! I do live in a place that's hilly and go to the Smokey Mountains fairly often.

How is it space wise on long trips? It will mostly be me, my boyfriend, and our two dogs on most trips but I occasionally will have a third person with me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I love my Cruze LT (automatic) and that's coming from a (spoiled) guy with a 465 HP Corvette and 1969 Z/28 Camaro. Just took my first interstate trip down to Bowling Green, KY over the weekend. The little beast had no problem running 70+ mph and got great mileage. The manual would be more fun to drive, but the auto isn't too shabby. The little 1.4T really impresses me for what it is.
Good to know! A Grand Am is obviously not a powerhouse but I do occasionally drive my pop's 1968 Camaro 327 which is pretty great! I do want something with a little pep to it for merging on the highway and stuff like that.
 

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How is it space wise on long trips? It will mostly be me, my boyfriend, and our two dogs on most trips but I occasionally will have a third person with me.
It depends on how occasionally and how tall everyone is. One weakness if the first generation Cruze is the back seat leg space. I'm 6' and I'd have to slide my seat forward in order for someone to sit behind me. If that's an issue, you may need to look at a Malibu instead. Either that or a second generation Cruze.
 

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It depends on how occasionally and how tall everyone is. One weakness if the first generation Cruze is the back seat leg space. I'm 6' and I'd have to slide my seat forward in order for someone to sit behind me. If that's an issue, you may need to look at a Malibu instead. Either that or a second generation Cruze.
Yeah. I'm 5'8 or so, but taller people don't find the back of the car comfortable - their knees are in the seat and there's not much headroom either. That said, great road trip car for 2-3 people and their stuff - my girlfriend and I have been on lots of extended trips with the Cruze. We even took a rental one to Florida for a week with 4 people, although we probably should have rented a bigger car.
 

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Good to know! A Grand Am is obviously not a powerhouse but I do occasionally drive my pop's 1968 Camaro 327 which is pretty great! I do want something with a little pep to it for merging on the highway and stuff like that.
I set the cruise control on it and was amazed at how well it managed the speed. Even climbing steep uphill grades it just trucked along. Obviously, it's not going to be anywhere close to being as peppy as a good ol' 327, but for a tiny little 4 cylinder, it's easily powerful enough to get you speeding tickets. A few times when I was running down the interstate without the cruise on, I somehow crept up to over 80 mph when I wasn't even trying to.

Merging on to a 70 mph speed limit interstate on ramp, had not problem merging into traffic.

For comparison, years ago, my mother-in-law gave me an old Geo Spectrum and it was so down on power that it scared me. I don't have that feeling with the Cruze.

I also recommend that you go test drive some to get a feel for them.
 

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it's easily powerful enough to get you speeding tickets. A few times when I was running down the interstate without the cruise on, I somehow crept up to over 80 mph when I wasn't even trying to.
It rolls. Like a toy Hot Wheel(tm). And totally cool with 70-80 MPH, no strain, no instability, no clue you're going that fast.
 
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
That's all great to know! Thanks y'all.

Is there a certain year model to avoid or prefer? I know it usually seems as though the first year of a new model or new body style tends to have more issues/kinks needing to be worked out than the years that follow. I don't really want a 2011 because it was the very first year and I'm not looking to buy a car that's quite that old.
 

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I had a 14 Eco manual and enjoyed driving that, bought new drove 22k miles, then traded for a 15 Cruze Diesel, liked the ECO and love the diesel. For the money the Cruze is a very nice car. My newer Cruze has more up to date stuff than my best friends Lexus land yacht, his car is comfy for sure and a very good car, but he is amazed about the turn by turn and onstar concierge services.
 

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Starting in 2015, the backup camera has guidance lines. Prior years do not. Also in 2015, they get LED DRLs. Prior years use the headlights for DRLs, which to me looks dated.
 
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