Pictured: Jim Campbell, VP Chevrolet Marketing, sitting proudly in front of his brand’s all-new Civic-fighter, the 2011 Chevy Cruze.
Chevy gave us an advance preview of their new Cruze last week in mid town. The global compact sedan will replace Cobalt in Chevy’s U.S. lineup when it hits dealerships at a base price of $16,995 this September. The athletic stance and clean lines wrap up a handsome little package and bear more than a passing resemblance to big brother Malibu. With its first rate materials and optional two-tone leather surfaces, the spacious interior is also a big part of the story in a segment that is shopped more for its low cost of entry than lavish interior textures and upscale passenger accommodations. Stand out cabin aside, Cruze will need all the help it can get if its fixin to do battle against perennial best sellers like the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla. Both nameplates have spent many decades and mucho marketing dollars convincing Americans that Japanese quality and compact cars go together like peas and carrots. Chevy hopes 40 MPG, class leading interior room and the most standard safety features in the segment will help to open their minds to new alternatives.