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Holden Cruze review

Keith Didham road tests and reviews the Holden Cruze.

Holden has good reason to be feeling relieved at the moment. While big cars largely remain out of favour, new car buyers are queuing for smaller, more fuel-efficient offerings. And that's where Holden's future now sits.

The big five sellers in the small market last month were all well entrenched: the Toyota Corolla, Mazda3, Mitsubishi's Lancer and Hyundai's i30. The fifth was Holden's Cruze which comfortably outsold Ford's Focus. Holden has now sold more than 4800 of them in less than three months.

It's a remarkable achievement from Holden because the newcomer has a lot of ground to cover to woo buyers away from its rivals. Importantly, this model has to be a winner for Holden as it fills the gap left by the Vectra and will probably endanger the future of Epica as well.

The Cruze is crusin' because it ticks most of the right boxes: the sedan-only styling has a familiarity with the Commodore, it comes with a five-star safety rating, it is well packaged for the money and in diesel form at least, is reasonably economical.

The fact that it, like Holden's Barina, Epica and Captiva, comes from General Motors subsidiary, formally Daewoo, in South Korea, has not dampened enthusiasm for the car either. And nor should it.

The Cruze shows a level of quality and driving experience which shows that the Koreans are kicking key goals. The goal for Holden is to now match that level of build quality when production of the Cruze switches to the company's Elizabeth plant in South Australia next year. That will see the Cruze range being expanded with a hatch, maybe wagon as well, and certainly the introduction of an LPG variant. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. In the market now is the ‘introductory’ model from Korea.

Drivetrains and pricing

You get a choice of 1.8-litre petrol or 2-litre diesel, a five-speed manual or six-speed auto and two equipment levels. Prices start at $20,990 and stretch to $25,990, plus on-road costs, which makes it cheaper than its rivals.

Equipment

On the safety front the Cruze comes with six air bags, anti-skid brakes, traction and stability control as standard fare. Add a spacious cabin and boot, well designed and easy to read instrument panel, leather upholstery, air conditioning, power windows, six-speaker audio system, height adjustable driver's seat, steering wheel mounted controls, cruise control, alloy wheels, fog lamps, heated front seats and park distance control and a trip computer and you get the picture.

Driving

The Cruze has much going for it and I really wanted to love it. I ended up liking it instead, and that's a shame. And it’s all to do with the marriage of the petrol and engine and the automatic gearbox. It appears they pay lip service to each other and don't communicate as they should. Which is why if you are looking at the Cruze — and it’s well worth considering - my tip is go for a manual transmission or the turbo diesel. That's a much better car to drive.

The baby Holden appears to be well put together and the ride reflects it. There's none of the harshness nor the crude, wallowing ride we have seen in previous models out of Korea so Holden's engineers have done a good job in setting this car up for our conditions.

There's some harshness on broken surfaces and the suspension, in the CDX-spec test car at least, can be noisy, almost if lacking isolation from the cabin. Overall the Cruze is very liveable apart from some hard plastics in the cabin, shapeless rear seat and lack of a driver's foot rest.

But for the money the Cruze is a real bargain. It’s a solid, well built entry into the small car market but performance is handicapped by the less than ideal match between the petrol engine, despite developing 104kW, and the six-speed sequential auto gearbox. You need plenty of revs to get moving at low speeds then the engine becomes harsh. The Cruze can be caught out, especially on moderate slopes as it tries to work out which gear is best.


Holden Cruze
Price: $25,990
Engine: 1.8-litre four-cylinder petrol engine, 104kW, 176Nm torque; 2-litre diesel 110kW and 320Nm torque.
Economy: official 7l/100km. As tested 9.6l/100km.
Emissions: 179g/km

Comments on this story

Displaying 3 of 65 comments

  • I bought my 2009 Holden Cruze 3 months ago it had 100,700km on the clock . It is a 1.8 petrol auto. I could not be happier. It is a modern nice to drive motor vehicle which has given me no problems or issues. Its no Ferrari. But I am more than happy with my Cruze.

    Richard Wallace of Auckland New Zealand Posted on 15 September 2013 9:26pm
  • I have the Holden Cruze CDX.
    THE WORST CAR EVER MADE.
    I purchased its as a demo model within 6 weeks it started having electrical problems. since buying in oct 2011 i have had to take the car back 6 times to holden who seem to have no idea what is going on. I WOULD NOT TELL MY WORST ENEMY YTO BUY THIS CAR!!

    JACKIE of Blacktown Posted on 21 June 2013 7:33pm
  • How is the petrol consumption on the Cruz 4 cylinder as I am contemplating buying a manual 4.
    Thanks

    Tania of Australia Posted on 10 June 2013 8:45am
  • Do not know how they got the figure of 7 lite/ 100 km. they must of carried the test from mt everest and roll most of way. I have tried to get the bloody thing under 9l/100 with out any luck.

    Cruzingdriver of Castle hill Posted on 24 January 2013 10:32am
  • 13.1.13 Have just purchased a 2010 Cruze JG CD Sedan with 30,000 on the clock,excellent care and condition by previous one owner.Any tips on driving this car to its full capacity, cant wait to get her out on the open road.Reply to this page
    regards Ann

    Ann of Toronto Newcastle NSW Posted on 13 January 2013 9:00pm
  • I have no idea what people are talking about with the under powered engines. And some of you need to read your manual. The downshift or kickback when overtaking is the automatic gearbox shifting down to allow faster acceleration. It is not a danger, its protecting your vehicle from damaging the engine. Gutless? No idea. I have a 2010 JG series 1 CDX 1.8L auto. The car is far from gutless, with even better power if the transmission is in the sports setting. Overall a great car. The only downside I have found is the increased road noise on unsealed roads. Apart from that. A fantastic vehicle

    TeeKay of Canberra Posted on 14 December 2012 9:43am
  • Love my manual diesel cruze but a foot rest would be nice.  Love filling it up and seeing i have about 800-900kms left in tank.  had small issue with petrol cap not opening but replaced with no issue from holdens.  Goes like a rocket and feels very safe on the highway overtaking.  Heaps of room for two kids and boot more than big enough.  would definitely recommend the diesel version to anyone

    nell of adelaide Posted on 14 September 2012 11:00am
  • Hello Cruze fans. I’m a 55 year old male whose driven many a car in my 40 years of driving. Having worked for many Government Depts in my time and being given a lot of cars to drive in my line of work, I must say that I was so impressed by the Cruze CDX 2ltr Diesel Auto that I went out and bought one only yesterday. I’ve been lucky enough to be driving one of these fleet vehicles for 4 months now and have also driven the CD and CDX petrol engines and wouldn’t recommend them. Nice yes, but so underpowered. All in all, the diesel manual or even the Auto 2 ltr is the way to go with an average fuel consumption of 6.4 L/ 100km. Not bad when you consider the size, weight of the Cruze. With the release of the new Series 2, now is a great time to get a run out deal on any JG series 1 Cruze. I agree Holden needs to give the new Cruze bluetooth, a driver’s footrest and another 12V aux socket and you’ve got the recipe down pat. More than happy with my diesel. Tis the only Cruze worth having.

    Graham Meyers of Adelaide Posted on 02 November 2011 8:19pm
  • @ Kevin Douglas. Here are some facts. You are in your late 20’s, you are a Ford fan and I know you. That’s also NOT your real name. Good try but you should learn to keep things like this to yourself in the lunch room instead of bragging about it.

    Kim Posted on 29 September 2011 6:39pm
  • I have cruze cdx…door doesn’t get locked if left unlocked. and not sure if the windows should roll up automatic if the door is locked(as the other cars with power windows does that) Does any one has the same issue ?

    Ravi of sydney Posted on 05 July 2011 10:11pm
  • i really am keen too getting a holden cruze cdx, but from what im seeing its not worth it? such a shame because this car is beautiful! :( my boyfriend was getting it for my 18th this year. now you guys are putting that off for me :(. whats its qualities?

    Rosa Johnson of shepparton Posted on 14 May 2011 11:25am
  • There is a second hand Holden Cruze 2010 but the airbags (2) have been blown.. do you think it is worth buying? does it cost much to fix?

    Mas of perth Posted on 13 April 2011 12:47am
  • Hi guys, I recently bought a new Cruze CD auto petrol for my wife. It seems exceptionally heavy on full and only getting 325km on a 60l tank!! Been back to the Holden dealer and they have no answers. My wife has a very light foot too. I’d be happy with 10l/100km but 17.5//100km is just ridiculous! The car has only done about 1100km but surely this is not normal? Anyone have the same problem?

    Kevin of Caloundra Posted on 12 March 2011 8:23pm
  • We live on dirt roads…no probs, got the code 95 fixed… now working on brake squeal (only going backwards with brake applied) apart from that it does suit.

    Tim Johnson of Barossa Valley Posted on 31 January 2011 9:31pm
  • Yes we are also experiencing the shudder in our 09 CD auto diesel when it changes from first to second gear, this problem has been like it since new, it has been reported to Holden in Melbourne & the local dealer, we are still awaiting an answer to this problem. The vehicle was taken to an independent auto specialist, his report was that it was in the drive train or engine management system, which is more information than our local dealer or Holden have given us. Otherwise we are more than happy with our Cruze.

    David S. Mackay of Mackay Posted on 17 January 2011 10:41am
  • Have a diesel turbo auto CDX Cruze - (cost $34,000) must say i do love the car and it certainly has heaps of umph. Has been in for repairs with the Error 95 x 3 times plus new motors for the window openings. Now it’s going to cost me an arm and a leg (approx $1200) because of poor support for the Air conditioner condensor. Holden dealer (without looking at the car) told me I must have hit a rock on the road - this makes me suspicious that Holden are already aware of this defect. Anyone else relate to this problem? thing is what guarantee do I have - this could happen on a regular basis and make owning the car prohibitive. Never had this problem with my Ford

    Chris C of Armidale NSW Posted on 13 January 2011 10:12am
  • I am planning to buy a cruze cdx 2010 model- auto petrol.could someone suggest me whether I should go for that or not. the above reviews has got a mixed response.thanks.

    Mathew Melbourne of Melbourne Posted on 28 December 2010 9:41pm
  • @ Michael H You must have drove the auto, try the turbo diesel no lagging there…

    Michael R of Melbourne Posted on 06 December 2010 11:59am
  • Hi i am thinking about buying the cruze cd petrol auto how many k’s should i get out of a tank

    Andrew of Morayfield Posted on 25 November 2010 9:23pm
  • I have had a Holden Cruze for one year and unfortunately on its anniversary I had an accident where I was what they called t-boned… (my fault) my question is that the airbags did not go off anywhere yet I was hit in the passenger and rear door by a car doing approx 60..luckily no one was hurt but I would of thought air bags would of gone off? no?

    jo fennessy Posted on 23 November 2010 10:12pm
  • I Like the car if it wasn’t for the faults, the seats squeak, this is going in for repair tomorrow, apparently a common problem, have had error code 95 fixed they replace the wiring loom, the rear bumper is starting to change shape around the rear tail lights, dealer says they have had a few reports of this recently, but the worst is that my 2 month old car got a rock through the air conditioning condenser and Holden quoted me $1700 to repair, their doesn’t seem to be much protection to stop the damage coupled with just a bit of bad luck, anyway its at least covered by insurance if anyone has same problem

    Steve of NSW Central Coast Posted on 22 November 2010 2:50pm
  • Any Cruze owners getting small dimples / small dent like impressions around the bonnet rear in that dropped area above the hinges (drivers side on ours)? We have 2 such impressions with no paint damage at all? First there was none, then 1 appeared and now 2 are there (about 70mm apart and 20 - 25 mm long!! Can’t for the life of us figure out how these impressions got there, they almost look stress related, that’s why I’m asking.
    Also, just got the Code 95 related recall notice in the mail, hmm not a good start for our three month old car..

    Chris A of Sunbury Posted on 06 October 2010 9:23am
  • I’ve been driving an Auto CD Petrol for about 2 months now. Initially, it felt rather unresponsive at take off but after putting it through its paces, it now feels much more responsive. Not as smooth a ride as a Mazda 3 but my Cruze didn’t cost as much either and is still a nice ride. I’m not a rev-head so I’m not the best person to comment on the engine power; only that it still goes up hills fine. If you’re after a car that will provide a comfortable ride, the Cruze is worth going in a test drive in.

    Ryan of Brisbane Posted on 05 October 2010 8:57pm
  • Drove an Avis rental from Newcastle to Sydney and gotta say hated the transmission and the tacky looking interior but it looked nice on the outside and had a good list of features. The 6-speed auto was a lagfest and I am not comparing this with a Commodore but a Corolla which I drove around for 12 days after taking the Cruze to Sydney.

    Mike Johnson of Newcastle Posted on 02 October 2010 10:06am
  • BREAKING NEWS: There’s now a “Customer Satisfaction Program” (that’s marketing speak for Vehicle Recall) for JG Cruzes with potential Code 95 faults. We received our letter today and It appears that once enough people complain, Holdens will investigate and actually fix faults. The wiring loom that connects the seatbelt pre-tensioner is faulty. Too bad if you happen to have an uncommon fault in which case the dealership has little authority to investigate or replace parts without high authority. If you have any problems and don’t want the run around I suggest demanding the service manager personally commit to finding the fault and guaranteeing its repair FIRST TIME ROUND. So far the car is otherwise fine, it’s Holden’s customer service that has an ANCAP rating of one star.

    Ben of McLaren Vale Posted on 29 September 2010 10:30pm
  • Have just driven to Canberra from Sydney in the CDX 1.8 Auto. I’m a VW Golf (mk4) owner and have a keen eye for ‘interactive’ driving experience. This is a good little car when it comes to handling and suspension, its very sport and fairly intuitive although not as good as my 10 year old Golf in ‘feel’ but in other respects, especially high speed handling its great, it will put SV6 Holden’s and SUV Lexus (I’ve driven both recently from the Shire to Wollongong and the Cruze was FAR better and felt safer) to shame. The weakness, and it?s a big one, is the engine. My 1.8 GLE Golf would beat the crap out of this new 1.8L gutless engine. I’m actually amazed how gutless it is, on freeway inclines if you try and leave it in 6th you’ll drop off, 5th maybe a chance but more likely you’ll be down in 4th. I could see getting use to it but buy the diesel and you?re sorted.

    Tony of Sydney Posted on 27 September 2010 10:07pm
  • We bought the CD petrol auto and I have to agree it isn’t quick and the auto gearbox tends to be neurotic at times.  The modern safety features and medium size were what we were after. 
    A few weeks ago the Code 95 airbag warning came up and my wife spent several hours at the dealership having it “repaired”.  They said theput some “gel” on a connection and if that doesn’t fix it they have to get an “electrician” in to fix. 
    So, sure enough the warning message has returned and we are not happy about the prospect of more run around and lost time.  We are customers not science experiments.  the dealership had better get someone who knows what they’re doing as our confidence in Holden is rapidly fading.

    Ben of McLaren Vale Posted on 22 September 2010 8:45pm
  • We have the CDX Diesel manual and I find it great. Coming from someone who has had Commodores I was worried about the smaller engine and car in general. Had a Vectra once but that didn’t last long. We test drove both the petrol and diesel and would not have purchased if only petrol was avaliable. Every now and again you will notice a slight lag in power but I was not after a drag car, just a reliable and efficient car for our family. Would recommend the CDX Diesel Cruze to anyone.

    Melanie F of Jimboomba Posted on 14 September 2010 1:13am
  • Just rented one of these today and have to agree exactly with the reviewer. It’s packed with features and looks great both inside and out, but the auto gearbox lags noticeably when you need extra power, and makes noticeable changes frequently between 5th and 6th when crusing at 100 on the highway. Handling is quite light but the overall handling feels nicely solid.

    Steve Posted on 11 September 2010 7:29pm
  • I’m sick of people sayin the Cruze is slow and lags in acceleration, If u want a fast car u would of chosen the SV6 Commodore not the Cruze, so whose fault is that. (Proud Cruze owner and loving it all the way)

    TJ of Central Coast Posted on 10 September 2010 2:42am
  • I was told it was an airbag wiring issue, in which case they may not deploy in an accident, not urgent, but needs to be attended to.

    Belotional of Elsewhere Posted on 06 September 2010 2:29pm
  • Code 95 error is a seat belt wiring issue, a connecting wire under the seat can be loosened when adjusting the seat back and forward. Can be easily fixed.

    Drew of Mornington VIC Posted on 31 August 2010 9:22am
  • Can I get advice on if it has any towing capacity, or in fact has any one towed a trailer behind the cruze??

    hmm of adelaide Posted on 26 August 2010 11:36am
  • Hello guys , bought a Holden Cruze CD in July and got a warning code 95… can anyone help?

    Nick Sutton of Melbourne Posted on 20 August 2010 9:19pm
  • Hello Anthony Layt of Sydney, the wheel in the Cruze is Height and reach adjustable. That solves the blocked gauges problem. As for manual air, I love it. My last three cars had Climate control, Audi A3, Mazda sp23 and CDX Astra. Never works as well as one you adjust youself. The temp setting is only a target, not the air temp coming out of the vents and in summer, I’ve never met an aircon that will reach a target of 22 or below anyway. If you want the air on and it is too cold, just wind some heat in until you are confortable. We have two Cruzes, both CDX auto’s, one petrol, one diesel. They are very easy cars to live with on a daily basis. I thoroughly recommend either. Cheers

    Geoff Stephenson of Wyong NSW Posted on 18 August 2010 2:36pm
  • Dennis Moore, me too, 2010 cdx Diesel Auto, 11,000ks. Love it. Yes I also have the little shudder, didn’t go to the dealer, doesn’t bother me. I have had diesels in boats and believe me that little shudder is nuthin’. Not sure it’s from the motor though, but I know what you mean, I’m fairly happy with my consumption, I’m 90% ‘burbs and 10% freeway. Seem to always get about 650ks on about 53/54 litres, that’s better than my manual 6sp Mazda sp23 used to get. On the freeway between Sydney and Newcastle I have dipped as low as 5.1 l/100ks for a trip, that’s over 50mpg in the old money.Happy motoring Dennis

    Geoff Stephenson of Wyong Posted on 18 August 2010 2:23pm
  • I have a 2010 diesel auto Cruze, it now has 9,000kms on the clock. While it is brilliant with fuel economy, I can get over 1000 kms on 60ltrs tank (90% highway, 10% town). The only problem I have is it shudders on take off, has done so from new, my Holden dealer told me all Cruzes’ do this, and it is not a problem. What a load. Does anyone else have this problem?

    Dennis Moore of Gladstone Qld Posted on 12 August 2010 3:00pm
  • I recently drove a Cruze as a hire car. I found the handling fine, the boot space decent and the auto headlights a nice touch, but the car lacked punch and responsiveness with the automatic transmission. I agree with the reviewer, get the manual or the diesel 2.0L, not the auto. Also, I found that the steering wheel blocked my view of the speedmeter and petrol gauge. The aircon isn’t really user friendly either as the Climate Control doesn’t give you a temperature setting option.  Hopefully Holden address these issues for the next generation and they’ll have themselves a quality car.

    Anthony Layt of Sydney Posted on 12 August 2010 12:15pm
  • We bought our Holden Cruze CD petrol 6 spd Auto in May 2010.
    Before purchasing this car we compared to all comparable vehicles on market (Mazda, Ford, Hyundai etc) and we found this car to be best value and perfect for our needs.

    Reason we bought this car:
    1.  When my wife got into the driver?s seat she seemed more comfortable ? and not aware she was driving a brand new demo as she was chatting away and seemed in total control. Unlike other cars where her first reaction was to focus on the car & road.
    2.  It had all the gadgets we need
    3.  Just seemed to feel safer in the vehicle.
    4.  More comfy driving ? you don?t feel the bumps on the road. Compared to other vehicles Cruze is a much smoother drive!

    3 months on do we have any complaints about the vehicle? No not at all. After 3000Km?s of driving, I can say this has been an excellent purchase for us.

    It does very well on the petrol. We travelled from Sydney CBD to Canberra return trip on a full tank and we got back to Sydney with nearly qtr tank of fuel remaining. On the odometer from memory it said it could do another 180Km?s. This car drives beautifully on long drives. We can?t wait to drive to Brisbane in Xmas.

    A Singh of Sydney CBD, NSW Posted on 06 August 2010 3:39pm
  • Hello there friendly Cruze owners. At the moment I am seriously considering purchasing the CD Manual Diesel Cruze from my local dealer, BUT my dear wife needs more convincing. We have test driven this car and we both love it, yet she is a bit apprehensive because the car is so new and we don’t know for sure how durable and reliable it will be in the long term. It ticks all the boxes for us except this one, so I am hoping that you all can help me in this regard. At the moment we are trying to make a choice between this car, the Mazda 3 or the Hyundai i30. We have friends that own Hyundai’s and Mazda’s but no one we know has a genuine knowledge of the Holden Cruze. I would greatly appriciate any feedback I could about how this is car is a benificial buy for us and our future family. Thank you kindly.

    Sharne Parata of Gold Coast Posted on 01 August 2010 9:54am
  • I have a CD diesel manual Cruze. Its fantastic. I get 6L per 100Km out on the open road. In the city it stays around 6.8L. Great car. John I think the problem your having with the boot not opening via the key “(you have to get out to open the boot).” is because all the key buttons are deactivated while in the ignition so you don’t press the open boot button while driving at speed or when you turn the key to start you don’t squeeze the key and have to get out to close the boot. We live in Mount Isa and we got to Townsville on one tank with about 150Km left in the tank. Not bad for only a 63L tank. Thats 900Km plus the 150Ks left in the tank. I would recommend this car to anyone. There are a few problems like all cars. The diesel seems to have a problem with the particle burner. Service centre or the manual don’t help. It says stay at 2000rpm while driving and it will go away but it doesn’t, it just goes by itself eventually. And like previously mentioned the lag from the turbo is massive. You really need to rev it and pop the clutch to get the thing moving off the line. But unless you want to drag a diesel cruze, it isnt much of a problem.

    Ross Clinton of Mt. Isa Posted on 30 July 2010 9:45am
  • My wife and i have just bought a cd cruze diesel manual transmission have had it two weeks we have done 4200 kms in it at first the fuel ecomomy was 7.1 l p 100 km after the cruze had 1000 kms on it the fuel economy has greatly improved at the moment its 6.2 l p 100 kms (45.5 miles per gallon) we are extremly happy with this car , the diesel manual is the only way to go it has more kilowatts and tourque than the petrol model , plus the pricing for a diesel car of its size makes it the cheapest in its class ,

    w dando of victoria Posted on 22 July 2010 10:39am
  • Had one of these through Avis on a recent trip to Sydney (auto petrol). Car had done approximately 40,000km. Extremely bad, even dangerous lag when accelerating from start. Automatic transmission had troubles selecting the appropriate gearing. All other appointments seemed well completed for my short experience. Electronic button to open the rear boot without the remote was there under the rear light. Considering a similar small car purchase for my wife. That acceleration lag might be just the thing that excludes this as a choice.

    Andrew Baker of Gold Coast Posted on 20 July 2010 11:23pm
  • Have taken delivery of a CD Cruze petrol auto .Yes definitely lack power but ok in a small country town,but not good in the city when you need to give it a foot full .It is a great car to drive,traded a 08 Corolla,it was tinny by comparison,but had more power,and easier on the fuel.The Cruze has a few other things missing,like no light ring at the ignition,the seat adjustment is on the wrong side of the seat,the fuel cap is a trick sometimes,the boot will only open via the key control(you have to get out to open the boot).But I like it,I would prefer a manual but was overruled by the “board of control” A GREAT little car though

    John Stibbs of Charters Towers Posted on 15 July 2010 9:10pm
  • I think the fact that at the top-end of the Cruze line-up Climate Control Air-conditioning is missing…why? The Cruze is sold in other markets (USA, Korea) under different brands, where it is offered with a Climate-Control A/C System…Dosn’t make sense Holden. And why IS the petrol SO SLOW?!? it SHOULD be a lightening bolt..the defunct Astra with it’s 4 spd Auto and 1.8L went quickish…not this…Hopefully when production in Aus starts these shortcomings will be addressed.

    C Blinman of Perth WA Posted on 12 July 2010 12:22am
  • Am looking at buying a CDX Diesel this week.  Am I making the right choice?  I’ve read mixed reviews….with the petrol model sounding as though it lags a bit, thus the thought to move to the diesel model.  Love the way it drives, it’s got a great deal more go than the petrol version.  Lovely leather interior too. Look forward to thoughts…

    K.Broun of Perth, WA Posted on 27 June 2010 11:39pm
  • Ordered CD red Cruz in 6/09. No delivery date on contract. Never knew when or where the vehicle was. Told was in Australia then still in Korea and then in customs. So annoying. Finally demanded vehicle be delivered as there were red Cruz’s in Melb available for delivery but not mine. Still had to wait. Then compromised on colour and a vehicle was located in NSW and transported to VIC on 24/9/09. Then I took delivery… not what I ordered. I am satisfied with the Cruz but would have like the advertised MP3 and a bit more guts would have been good, but for price and value I’m satisfied and safety was paramount for me. Would buy Holden again. This was my first but would choose dealer a lot more carefully. Would also make sure delivery date is on contract. The Cruz was definately worth waiting for but the process was disappointing and full of contradictory information. The truth would have been better and less time consuming.

    tracie of rural vic Posted on 14 June 2010 12:52pm
  • After 6 mths of no return promised phone calls and letters not replied to, Holden says that hot air is normal from the fresh air vent set to cold. Use your airconditioner to keep it cool, I was told, the car has no power now with air con on all the time it will have less. As others have stated Holdens service and customer service is just so bad. This car will not be popular even if they are pushing these on TV ads. It has over 30 items that need attention if they want to sell them Its ride is like a billy cart with no suspension, just plain awful. Also you will lose 10000 dollars in the first 6 months. My advice Do Not Buy One.

    Gerry W of Carrum Downs Posted on 05 June 2010 8:07pm
  • I bought my CDX auto in July 2009 and have been fairly happy with it.  Criticisms include; lack of power on take off, lag on acceleration, needs better lighting for nighttime country driving, high beams are fine, but needs extra driving lights in light assembly.
    Very happy with interior and display, Around the city, auto has trouble deciding which gear to use, more suited for long distance driving.  Already driven to Melbourne twice with no problem, excellent cruise control and good fuel economy.
    My daughter bought CDX manual in January 2010, a little easier to drive in the city, however, gearing still needs work as still has power lag, especially from second.
    We are both reasonably happy.  Bit of fine tuning will improve things.

    Lester Powell of Adelaide, SA Posted on 04 June 2010 9:36pm
  • Recently test drove the mid size competitors to the Cruze, eg Jetta Diesel and petrols as well as the Mazda 3 variants also Hondas in same price bracket. Ended up getting the misses the Cruze diesel manual,I can’t fault it after test driving and annoying all sales representatives of the above cars in auto and manual boxes as well as fuel types. The Cruze manual diesel is is the best out of the Cruzes, was more than happy settling for the CD diesel due CDX only coming in petrol as it was very gutless in comparison and extras did not justify. Although the 3 diesel with the 6 speed was nice it seemed dated and plain in the interior it was to feminine for me compared to the Cruze, Jetta was nice it seemed again dated yet deceivingly bulky though it had a cerain class about it. all and all I was weary of chasing parts and specialised maintenance for it if something did go wrong. The Cruze certainly is not the a mans only car but I don’t feel to poofy driving it with out the kids. You shouldn’t knock it till you drive it, all my mates that have, have liked it and enjoy driving it chance they get..

    Shaneo of Gold Coast Posted on 06 May 2010 10:36pm
  • To all you disappointed owners - A crappy car with poor after sales service. What do you expect? Holden dealers have always treated their customers with contempt, and the cars are Daiwoo !!. Wait till they assemble them here - you ain’t seen nothing yet! I’m 66 and worked for Holdens Woodville for years. The last decent car they built was the EH.

    kevin Douglas of Gold Coast Posted on 28 April 2010 12:09am
  • My wife has had her Cruze auto for few months now. It too had seemed to have a flat spot when accelerating, however she recently took it as part of the recall and they replaced the battery… After that the flat spot went. The digital fuel readout tends to fluctuate by +/- 5Kms when its being driven - depending if you’re going over bumpy ground or up a hill or down a hill. My wife told the dealer at the time of the recall and they told her that they had upgraded the software. But guess what - it still does it - she’s just picked the car up from the dealer today after 2 days in the workshop for the same problem. And now they tell her that’s ‘its normal’! Poor design I would say. The service from the dealer has been poor - no understanding of customer service, no ability to empathise with the customer and sloppy quality - when they changed the battery they didn’t even bother to reset the clock or the radio stations. They might be small things, but I think they demonstrate a lack of attention to detail. As is always the case - a reasonably good product is let down by poor after sales service.

    Glen Molloy of Bankstown area Sydney Posted on 20 April 2010 9:02pm
  • Have had my Cruze since April 1st## So I’m still a newby. I have the CD manual so am still getting used to it. I find 2nd gear a bit gutless on pick up after having to slow down, you have to drop it down to 1st to allow it to pick up again. My husband thinks the back window is too small & has to use mirrors to reverse because he can’t see out the back and pillars cause blind spots. It doesn’t bother me because I’ve always used mirrors to reverse, other than that, I think it’s a really classy car. Very happy with it!

    Issy Campbell of Arncliffe, Sydney Posted on 13 April 2010 2:02pm
  • I sold my BA XR6 Turbo for the Cruze CDX, mainly for the safety rating and the apparent economy the car provides. We bought the auto 1.8L petrol model and initially I hated the car, but was too embarrassed to tell my wife that we’d sold a perfectly good car for a gutless wonder.

    Anyways, it’s grown on me now after about 10,000k, but my wife hates it, mainly because she can’t see past the pillars in the front and the rear window is so small. The brakes are starting to squeal and carry on, yet we have treated this car with so much respect (For $30,000 you’d want to look after it).

    Like I said, it’s grown on me and I am quite happy with it now. The only thing that really annoys me is that to open the boot, I have to turn the car off, pull the keys out, press the boot button only to have to start the car again. Oops, forgot something else in the boot, turn the car off, take the keys out…. Unless someone knows of the hidden boot button, I’m tempted to void the warranty and wire my own up.

    I’ve had issues with the cruise control turning off mid hill, whether it is a safety feature or just has no oomph. Otherwise, it gets you from A to B in style and safely (I think anyways)

    Ashman ze great of Canberra Posted on 04 April 2010 11:00am
  • I got this car last week, infact 5 days ago and i am very happy with it so far.  I got the CD petrol auto and its great!
    The drive is very smooth and i haven’t really had a problem with the gears.  sometimes i need to stick it over to toptronic to keep it in gears for a bit longer when climbing hills, but thats it.
    Have been using 91 petrol from BP but might start using 95 to see if that makes a difference.
    have only done 500kms in it so i can’t really say what its like once run in.  but so far, i am very impressed!

    Adam of Perth Posted on 02 March 2010 4:28pm
  • Have now had my CDX for 6 weeks, and I am overall pretty happy with it.  After reading everyones comments, I both agree with some, but not others.  It drives very smooth on sealed roads, but is noisy and rough compared to my last car (‘02 Ford Laser) on unsealed roads.
    I find the one of the worst design flaws is the position of the air vents. The majority of the airflow hits the back of the steering wheel when in the drivers seat. Not too good on a hot day!
    In regards to the MP3 plug n play (Ryan T), the circular port in the centre console is a plug n play.  However the 2010 badged Cruze also have the USB port in the centre console.  Both are plug n play.
    Overall, I think the Cruze is good value for money.

    Sarah O Posted on 02 March 2010 2:25pm
  • I have had a Holden Cruze for 8 months and as time goes by we are very happy, initially the auto was a bit sluggist on shifts,this got better with about 4000K on the clock We now prefer E10 98 octane fuel, whilst it is 5% dearer in price in Gunnedah, we get 7% better economy, the car has more torque and pickup and gear shifts happen just when you want, handling is great, Cruze control even works better, The manual has it that 91 up is OK, more power with premium 95. it is more economic for us to use 98, with the advantage of slight power increase

    alko of gunnedah Posted on 17 February 2010 9:21pm
  • The Cruze looks good and is well appointed, but that’s where it stops. I found the 1.8 liter auto under powered. It seemed to feel every rise in the road. It became difficult to maintain a constant speed in the open. Disappointed

    Phil of Melbourne Posted on 17 February 2010 9:14pm
  • I too really wanted to love this car, but the test drive let me down. Yes its got lots except i found lumber support a little lacking and the clutch pedal too high and no foot rest and those are things that directly affect me. 4000 more for a diesel? forget it.
    This car is dangerous to be on the road in the manual form as you have to hunt for gears, its sloppy and either underpowered or overpowered when your trying to match it up.
    Driving on city roads is about getting out of tight situations safely and quickly not stalling on roundabouts or lights. I give it zero for safety and so i was sorry to let it go off my list of ‘next car for 5 years’.

    doug of brisbane Posted on 07 February 2010 9:29am
  • mine has a usb port, why doesn’t yours? It’s in the box between the seats.

    mas of adelaide Posted on 04 February 2010 1:19am
  • Michael H, take it for a 2 minute spin did you? I have the 2.0L Turbo Diesel 5 speed Manual and could not be happier. Plenty of power and accellarates quicker than my old Commodore 3.8L. Ride is smooth on both Highway and around town and has all the creature comforts I need. You are being a tad picky I feel. Enjoy your underpowered, ugly Corolla.

    John S. of Coffs Harbour. Posted on 26 January 2010 10:23am
  • is this a good car to buy??? i don’t want a car thats noisey or bumpy! and the performance. what is it like good bad or what??? i want a powerful car! is it underpowered??? is it good on the highway??? does it go faster that 100km??? does it get up speed fast?? or not???

    james power Posted on 24 January 2010 3:46pm
  • My Holden Cruze CDX does not have a USB port, despite claims of MP3 “plug and play”. OK, it’s my fault for not checking - I took Holden’s word for it.

    Ryan T of Sydney Posted on 05 January 2010 1:49pm
  • Holden Cruze 2009

    Noticed improvements needed.

    1 Chrome and silver steering wheel centre and trim is bad when reflecting the sun into your eyes.
    2 Bonnet and boot strength especially bonnet feels like it will dent when closing it I was told to drop it to close, not a good move.
    3 Interior smell gives me and others a headache, would like to know what it is, non toxic I hope, many people complain about it on internet etc.
    4 Vibration form the road surface (especially rough gravel bitumen surfaces) is heavily transmitted to the cabin seating and is quite annoying.
    5 Suspension has a clunk as if it is loose or contacting the rubber buffers when hitting only slight road imperfections.
    6 Stopped vehicle for a rest on a long trip and when we tried to start the vehicle it would not start in Park or Neutral, the fuel indicator readout said Fill Fuel however it was only filled 50 kms earlier. Many attempts nothing happened until I opened and closed the driver?s door. Then it started.
    7 Another 12 volt power outlet would be good in the front if you have a mobile and a GPS.
    8 The front pillars obscure forward view too much as it is too thick.

    Gerry W of Melbourne Posted on 15 December 2009 2:10pm
  • Our company stupidly bought a small fleet of these on the advise of an internet comparison of the Corolla (our current fleet car) and one persons test drive.

    This car never fails to disappoint me and is down right dangerously underpowered. A colleague was nearly pole axed by a tram today after flooring the accelerator and it lagging 2 seconds. These cars (and I?ve driven three different ones just to make sure mine wasn?t a lemon) have a flat spot when taking off and could not be relied on if you had to accelerate out of trouble.  The gearbox is terrible either under revving or nearly red lining. 

    The cruise control is easy to engage but lags when adjusting, simply won?t accelerate above 100kms and alters speed + or ? 5kms for no apparent reason. I?m not a fan of the interior, it seems, well Korean and cheap. 

    Other issues include, the headlights (set on auto) staying on once the car is locked and display lights in buttons for climate control working sporadically. All this in a car that has just clocked up the 1000kms!
    This car is all style and no substance. Looks good inside and out, roomy but due to its performance issues is an accident waiting to happen.DO NOT BUY THIS CAR

    Michael H of Melbourne Posted on 10 December 2009 7:56pm
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