Cars.com’s Kickingtires blog has a question: “With consumers so concerned about fuel economy, why is General Motors waiting two years to bring out the Chevrolet Cruze, the replacement for the compact Chevy Cobalt?” Of course, we would ask the question with more of a “if the Cruze isn’t being sold for two years, why is GM hyping it now?” slant. Either way, even Kicking Tires is saying something’s gone wrong, horribly wrong, here. But no matter, Bob Lutz has the answer. “We’re waiting on the new world car because that gives us time to develop the 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder for it,” explains the man of maximum. And the way Lutz tells it, the Cruze’s new 1.4 turbocharged four-banger will be worth the wait. “The 1.4-liter is going to be more high torque than high horsepower,” explains the Car Czar. “High torque at the low end for power takeoffs and quick acceleration while still getting high mileage… We expect to get more than 40 mpg highway, better than with some hybrids.” Well, that sounds worth the wait, right? Well, in yet another Lutzie-worthy performance, Maximum Bob shoots his argument in the foot by revealing that “The 1.4 liter goes on sale in Europe in a couple weeks.” So then why is the Cruze not available until the mythical land of “late 2010?” Instead of waiting for the engine, is it possible GM’s waiting for, say, low-interest government loans for retooling factories to build more fuel-effiecient cars? Bet on it.
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