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Holden Cruze hatch released (copyright image) (copyright image) (copyright image)

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Holden Cruze hatch production begins
25th October, 2011
Holden Cruze for 2012
11th September, 2011

1st December, 2011

The local launch of the new Holden Cruze hatch marks the culmination of a programme that saw Holden designers put to the test of designing a car for numerous global market for General Motors.

After winning the right to lead the design of this global vehicle, the team at Holden’s Design Studio in Port Melbourne set about designing a stylish sporty hatch that would appeal to customers around the world.

Holden Design Manager Martin Love said the team combined European design sensibilities with an injection of Holden 'DNA' to produce a car that was both stylish and practical to offer broad appeal.

“To have been involved in the development of such an important vehicle that will be sold around the world is one of the highlights not only of my design career, but of the entire team that worked on this project,” Mr Love said.

“The customer base for the compact hatch market is probably the most diverse imaginable, so we really had to be creative in our approach.”

That approach has resulted in a sweeping coupe-like roofline, short overhangs, a sculpted rear tailgate topped with an integrated spoiler, rising belt line and a wide stance to give the Cruze hatch a dynamic, sophisticated and eye-catching aesthetic.

The new Cruze hatch shares its 2,685 mm wheelbase and 1,477 mm height with the sedan version. Overall body width excluding mirrors also remains the same at 1,797 mm.

With its short front and rear overhangs, overall length for the CD and CDX hatch compared to the sedan equivalents has been reduced from 4,615 mm to 4,518 mm (-79 mm), while the overall length of the unique Australian-developed SRi and SRi-V hatch models is 4,542 mm (-87 mm) compared to 4,629 mm for sedan versions.

The sporty SRi sedan and hatch models are differentiated from the rest of the range on the inside, with the addition of new seats boasting leather-look Sportec bolsters in both the front and rear.

Cruze hatch shares much of its interior styling with the sedan with a dual cockpit design boasting quality finishes, soft-touch components and an integrated centre stack.

With its smart packaging and thoughtful lay out, the Cruze hatch offers space for five.

Holden’s design of the rear tailgate and interior load space has resulted in a large practical family-friendly luggage space that will hold 413 litres with the standard 60/40 split-fold rear seats upright. This expands to 1,254 litres with the rear seats folded flat.

All Cruze hatch models come standard with a tyre inflation kit but when fitted with the no-cost optional full size spare wheel, Holden designers have come up with a clever use of space that adds two underfloor storage bins on either side of the spare wheel to minimise any loss of storage.

And despite its sporty coupe-like appearance the Holden Cruze hatch offers slightly better ingress/egress compared to the sedan, due to the hatch design affording extra head clearance when entering and exiting the vehicle.

Mr Love said Holden’s design team relished the opportunity to develop a car for the global market but found the biggest challenge was integrating the hatch body style to ensure it maintained visual coherence with the Cruze sedan.

“There may be a perception that we simply redesigned the rear of an existing car but in reality it’s a bigger challenge than starting with a clean sheet of paper,” Mr Love said.

At the forefront of the design brief was the global nature of the car. Lead designer, Lee Mitchell and the team canvassed a number of options during the initial phase of the design, keeping in mind the various preferences from the numerous different markets the vehicle would be sold in.

“Different scenarios at each end of the spectrum were investigated from an almost wagon-type hatch through to a sporty coupe-like hatch including lots of proportional models and studies looking at different rear end overhangs,” Mr Love said.

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“Australians and Europeans have similar preferences for sporty vehicles in this class so we were keen to give the hatch a more youthful character than the sedan.”

“When all the options were sketched, the sportier version that Lee designed won hands-down.  Everyone said, ‘That’s the car we’ve got to do’.”

That car was unveiled to the world as a concept at the Paris Motor Show in September 2010. The show car was designed and built at the Holden Design Studio in Port Melbourne.

The Holden Design Studio is an important part of General Motors’ global design network and is one of only three GM facilities with the capability to design and build concepts and show cars for international exhibitions and motor shows.

Mr Love said General Motors' management recognised the strength of the Holden studio following the success of its recent designs for cars including the VE Commodore, Monaro and the new Chevrolet Camaro.

“Being such an important global vehicle for GM, it shows a lot of confidence in Holden that we were given this job,” Mr Love said.

“General Motors Design works as a global operation and Holden’s Design Studio is an integral part, so it is incredibly rewarding to take the lead on products like the Cruze hatch which really showcases Holden’s talent and skills on a world stage.”

Holden Cruze sedan and hatch prices* (MLP*)

Cruze CD 1.8 litre petrol manual/auto $21,240*/$23,240*
Cruze CD 1.4 litre iTi petrol manual/auto $22,490*/$24,490*
Cruze CD 2.0 litre diesel manual/auto $25,240*/$27,240*
Cruze CDX 1.8 litre petrol manual/auto $24,740*/$26,740*
Cruze CDX 2.0 litre diesel manual/auto $28,740*/$30,740*
Cruze SRi 1.4 litre iTi petrol manual/auto $24,990*/$26,990*
Cruze SRi V 1.4 litre iTi petrol manual/auto $28,490*/$30,490*

NOTE: * Manufacturer's List Price (MLP) excludes dealer delivery fees and the numerous statutory charges (commonly known as on-road costs). Additionally, please note that all prices, fees and charges are subject to change without notice, as are the specifications.


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