The Holden Cruze is back - but not as we know it.
The brand has confirmed it will add the Astra sedan to its local line-up in May. While it will it be called an Astra, it will not be sourced from Europe like the new hatch. Instead it will be a rebadged version of the US developed Chevrolet Cruze sedan, a nameplate ditched by Holden late last year when local small car production ended.
Whatever the name, the new model is based on the same General Motors' 'D2' small car underpinnings as the European Astra hatch, but will be built in South Korea. As with most new models Holden's Australian-based engineering team will tune the Astra sedan chassis and suspension settings to suit Australian conditions.
"Last year, Holden committed to launching 24 new products by 2020, and Astra sedan represents the thirteenth of those, joining Astra hatch and Astra coupe to continue building a world-class small car range," explained Marinos Panayiotou, Holden's head of planning development.
"Astra sedan is a truly global vehicle, developed in Europe, manufactured in Korea and finished with design elements and significant engineering input from Holden."
Holden's Melbourne-based design team also had input into the Astra sedan, creating a new front grille and fascia that shares similar elements to the new imported Commodore.
Holden hasn't released details for the new Astra sedan, however it is likely to be similar to the American Cruze which is powered by a 1.4-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine. In the US it is tuned to produce 114kW of power and 239Nm of torque and is paired with either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission.
Even though it is expected to be offered with a single engine option, unlike the hatch which has a more powerful 1.6-litre in the RS and RS-V variants, the sedan is understood to be offered across a three-tier model line-up. Whether its South Korean sourcing will allow Holden to buck an industry-wide trend and position the sedan cheaper than the European-built hatch is yet to be determined as Holden will confirm final price and specification details closer to its showroom launch.
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