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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I work as a parts guy at a Chevy dealer, and I also have a 2017 Cruze. There have been issues with detonation (pinging) damaging pistons. We just had one towed in Monday with a damaged piston. I can see Chevy eventually releasing some type of recall/service bulletin similar to what's going on with the Impala where a reprogram is done and the oil is switched to synthetic Dexos. In the meanwhile, I may have found an interesting tidbit of info. In the owner's manual, it recommends an octane rating of 87 ("Regular" grade fuel) with 10% or less ethanol content. They also recommend Top Tier fuel because of the additive package it contains. So I put my VIN into our parts catalog and run all the option codes and other info on it. On my RPO codes, code KRD is listed- denoting the use of 91 octane fuel!! Running the VIN of the car in the shop, along with a few off our lot shows that that code appears each time. So this has me wondering if octane rating has something to do with these failures. It may be ok to run 87 octane if you're not doing spirited driving or live in an area with hills, but I just wonder if these engines in the 2nd gens are designed for 91 octane and they misprinted to owner's manuals. Regardless, I'll be using 91 octane from now on. I've been using 89 with good results, so I could see 91 working just fine.
 

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I am under the impression that all Dexos oil is now full synthetic. What's interesting, is I have not found any gas with no ethanol that is top tier, only gas with up to 10% ethanol. I'm guessing the additives are what makes it top tier. Not sure about the octane. One of the reasons I bought another Cruze was the fuel economy and cost saving. Going to a higher octane will not save me as much money, especially with it 40 cents more than 87. I will do it if it makes since, but it will be frustrated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Doing digging on old threads, this has popped up before on 1st gen 1.4L engines. Consensus then was to use 91 and ignore the owner's manual. The RPO codes are unique to the car, the owner's manual isn't. Looks like this practice has continued on to the 2nd gen 1.4L as well.
 

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Personally I think it's crazy to run anything but premium in any force induction car. IMO, Marketing and bean counters put in the 87 octane rating in the manual to help sell it as an economy car. I've seen better performance, and better gas mileage with premium and I'll stick with that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'm going to run this tank of 89 octane out and then start with premium only. One of the stations near me even has ethanol free 91!
 

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Is KRD printed on the label in the glovebox? It was on the Gen 1s, even the 1.8L LS model.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I didn't look to see if there was a label in my glovebox. I don't recall seeing one, so I'll have to look around. If they still have RPO labels, I would think it's on there somewhere.....
 

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You can tell that the engine is noticeably more happy on premium.

Not sure if the pistons blowing apart is a cause of the fuel, or oil, or tune or may be some of each. At the end of the day, what GM kinda needs to do is just richen up the fuel mixture to run regular like the Ford Ecoboost engines and stop chasing after the loftiest MPG goals in their respective classes. Just like the first generation, no one's going to want to buy an economy car knowing that it needs to run Premium fuel, and piston failures aren't helping their case for turbo engines being as reliable as naturally aspirated engines that some competitors are still using.

It was the Malibu 1.5T that had the recall/reprogram/oil change done, btw. Impala uses a regular 2.5 NA or 3.6 NA and doesn't really care what you put in the tank.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
You're right. I did say Impala. It's the Malibu with the 1.5T recall for the reprogram and oil change. Sorry about that.
 

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What they said above. Before we get into the "why 91/93 is a waste" video soon to be posted, the video showed a Cruze running 87 for it's entire life then put to the test of 93 while in DFCO state. If Gen 2 is like Gen 1 you can't just toss 91/93 in and be good especially when the video doesn't show the car in a regular or stressed load at all. The car needs to run the 87 out completely after a few tanks to hold the 91 (KRD) map.
 
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