2016 Cruze front
Patrick Rall's picture

All-New 2016 Chevrolet Cruze Price Undercuts Almost Every Competitor

General Motors has used the 2015 LA Auto Show as the backdrop to announce the pricing for the all-new 2016 Chevrolet Cruze and with a base price starting at just $17,495 including destination, the new Chevy compact sedan undercuts literally every comparable sedan sold in America but two.

The Chevrolet Cruze was the 12th bestselling vehicle in the US market in 2013 and 2014, and aside from the Silverado truck lineup, the Cruze is General Motors’ bestselling vehicle. The Cruze has been a hot seller since it replaced the Chevy Cobalt back in 2011 so it should go without saying that for GM, the roll out an all-new Cruze is a pretty big deal.

When we learned that the 2016 Chevrolet Cruze would be lighter, more powerful, more efficient and roomier than the outgoing models, while also introducing new technology – both standard and optional – it was clear that the new Cruze would continue to be a major player in the US compact sedan segment. With the announcement of the official pricing, General Motors is clearly looking to make the small Chevy the top dog in the very popular segment.

2016 Chevy Cruze Pricing
General Motors hasn’t dished all of the fine details, but the company has announced the trimline pricing for the five different forms available at launch later this year. The base model is the Cruze L with a manual transmission, followed by the LS with the manual transmission then the LS with the automatic transmission. Finally, we have the LT and the Premier packages, both of which come with a standard automatic transmission.

The base model 2016 Chevy Cruze L comes with the new standard 1.4L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine which will pack more than 150 horsepower and still offer 40 miles per gallon in some configurations. The MyLink infotainment system with a 7 inch screen is also standard on this base model car and the price, with destination, begins at just $17,495. When you step up to the more well-appointed Cruze LS with the manual transmission, the price rises to $18,995 while the Cruze LS with the automatic transmission starts a grand higher, at $19,995. Those who want to go for the Cruse LT with the standard automatic will pay $21,995 and the top of the line Cruze Premier starts at $23,995.

When compared to the 2015 Chevrolet Cruze across the trimlines, the 2016 models are a touch more expensive, but when you consider the advantages and new standard features for the next generation Cruze – the price hike is a value. The base model 2015 Cruze with the 1.8L packing 138hp started at $16,995, so the new model starts $500 higher. The 2015 LS with a manual transmission started at $18,570 and the LS automatic started at $19,695, so the 2016 LS models increased by $425 and $300, respectively. The 2015 LT automatic started at $20,920, $1,075 more and since the Premier package is new for 2016, we can compare it loosely to the 2015 Cruze LTZ – the new high end package is actually $1,100 less than the outgoing models.

2016 Cruze VS the Competition
General Motors included a brief table comparing the 2016 Chevrolet Cruze based pricing to three chief competitors – the 2016 Toyota Tacoma L, the 2016 Honda Civic LX and the 2016 Hyundai Elantra SE – and as you might expect, the Cruze costs less than each of those popular models. I went a bit further, checking the pricing of all of the other major players in the compact sedan segment and it turns out that in base form, the 2016 Cruze is also less expensive than the Ford Focus S and the Dodge Dart SE, while costing slightly more than the base model Nissan Sentra S and the Kia Forte LX. I also looked at the premium trim packages for each of the cars mentioned above and while the Chevy Cruze Premier is less expensive than the Ford Focus Titanium, the Dodge Dart Limited and the Honda Civic Touring while the Corolla S Premium, the Elantra Limited, the Sentra SL and the Kia Forte EX all have lower starting prices than the top of the line 2016 Cruze.

Of course, there are all sorts of variables which can make these prices more or less of a value from model to model, but for those folks who go shopping with a tight budget in mind – the Chevy Cruze will get people in the door simply with one of the lowest starting prices in the market.

Prices for the Compact Sedan Market:
2016 Chevrolet Cruze L - $17,495
2016 Chevrolet Cruze Premier - $23,995

Ford Focus S - $18,100
Ford Focus Titanium - $24,100

Toyota Corolla L - $18,065
Toyota Corolla S Premium - $23,790

Dodge Dart SE - $17,990
Dodge Dart Limited - $25,390

Honda Civic LX – $19,475
Honda Civic Touring - $27,335

Hyundai Elantra SE – $18,085
Hyundai Elantra Limited – $22,535

Nissan Sentra S – $17,355
Nissan Sentra SL – $21,545

Kia Forte LX – $16,815
Forte EX - 20815

Note: I have not included the Subaru Impreza, as the standard all-wheel drive causes the base price to be much higher than any of these front-drive models.

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Comments

Comparing retail prices is NOT the way to final prices, unless you are a dealer not willing to deal. Back in 2013, Chevy wouldn't come below $20,000+ for a manual Eco Cruze. So I got an auto Elantra with generous extra baubles for $15,500(no dealing). Our EPA downrated 38 highway mpg Elantra AVERAGED 39mpg, with multiple highs of 43(not trip computer). Problems cropped up for the Cruze, in the form recalls & lower reliability ratings than the Elantra, too. Oh, yeah. Our 2013 auto Elantra has been sweet for 30,000+ miles....so much so, we got a 2016 manual 38mpg Elantra....easily buying for $12,800(what-$5000+ under retail). Driven 10,000+ miles, manual Elantra averages 39mpg AND has gotten 46mpg-highway(not trip computer). Including our 110,000 mile Hyundai Accent, we're miffed, having little use of the three 100,000 mile warranties so far, the two Elantras, nothing wrong at all....hey, those are good things!