Day 5 ? Pismo Beach, Calif. to San Diego
We probably go to Southern California four, six or eight times a year between occasional personal trips and to new car introductions, but we can never get used to the mass of traffic moving at high speeds over four to eight lanes of freeways.
Continuing south on a workweek morning, we encountered masses of commute traffic on freeways and plenty of stop and go on other roads.
By the end of our road trip, we?ve covered exactly 2,000 miles, of course that?s driving from home to our start near the Canadian border to the Mexican border and then back to Los Angeles airport where we dropped the 2014 Chevrolet Cruze Diesel and then flew back to Portland, Ore. When we started we theorized making the trip on two fill-ups, but we hadn?t thought about all the extra miles we needed to drive along the way, and to and from our start and finish. The bottom line was we used 46.3 gallons in four fills making the final fuel economy 43.2 mpg. That?s very good considering we tried to stay close to the speed of traffic, which always seemed to be five to 10 mph over the speed limit. Plus there was much more stop and go then we expected. The EPA estimates the Cruze Diesel fuel economy at 27 mpg city, 46 mpg highway and 33 mpg combined, so we actually did quite well.
The Cruze is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder diesel with a six-speed automatic transmission. This is the cleanest diesel engine General Motors has ever built ? it generates 90 percent less Nitrogen Oxide and particulate emissions than previous diesel engines. The engine is rated at 151-hp and 264-lb.ft. or torque. The Diesel also has a longer five-year 100,000-mile powertrain limited warranty, and a two-year maintenance plan that includes oil changes, tire rotation and diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) top-offs. The DEF is Urea, which is injected into the exhaust system to make a final cleaning of the exhaust.
The Cruze comes in five gasoline-powered trim levels, with pricing ranging from $18,080, including the destination charge for the LS up to $24,615 for the LTZ. The Diesel is the sixth trim level of the Cruze lineup rather than the diesel being a standalone vehicle with various models trim levels of its own. The Diesel is priced at $25,695 and includes approximately the same equipment as the 2LT model, which includes features like leather seating, remote start, heated front seats, the normal power equipment, OnStar, cruise control, the Chevrolet MyLink communications and audio system with XM radio.
If we were buying the Cruze diesel, there are three options we would add: navigation, sunroof and the Enhanced Safety Package. The safety package includes Side Blind Zone Alert, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and rear park assist. The navigation also has a backup camera.
No navigation system in our Chevy Cruze meant we used our own Magellan system, which works well, but certainly isn?t as convenient as a built-in system. One other piece of equipment we used for the trip was a Cobra iRadar detector which links by Bluetooth to Bill?s Android phone. The radar detector wasn?t necessary because we stayed close to the posted speeds, but it?s nice to have some warning in the event speeds strayed into the danger zone.
The Diesel trim also adds some features to improve fuel economy like an aero performance package with lower front grill air shutter, mid-body aero panels, front fascia air dam and rear spoiler.
In San Diego, we stayed at the new Worldmark in the Park hotel, which is one of the newest properties in our timeshare collection. This is a beautiful hotel, which has been remodeled recently and is one of the nicest Worldmark properties we stayed in?we plan to go back for a longer visit.
With our flight home already booked, we didn?t have a lot of tourist time, but we did do a bit of sightseeing and even finished the jaunt to the Mexican border on the Tijuana Trolley. We also saw the Midway aircraft carrier, the life-size sculpture of Bob Hope entertaining the troupes and the giant statue replicating Alfred Eisenstaedt?s photo of the sailor kissing the nurse in Time Square. Of course, every trip to California includes a stop at In-N-Out Burgers, too.
If you would like to read more about the 2014 Chevrolet Cruze Diesel go to:?http://www.chevrolet.com/diesel-vehicles.html?seo=goo_|_GM+Chevy+Awareness_|_GG-AWR-Chevrolet+Cruze+Diesel-BP-SN-BMM-LPTest_|_Chevrolet+Cruze+Diesel-Test-Segment+Page_|_%2Bchevrolet%20%2Bcruze%20%2Bdiesel