General Motors Co.’s Chevrolet brand will reveal the new Chevrolet Cruze diesel model during a Feb. 7 news conference at the Chicago Auto Show.
GM spokesman Terry Rhadigan confirmed that the Detroit automaker will debut the Cruze diesel, expected out later this year, at the Chicago show. The Cruze diesel is one of 13 new or updated models Chevrolet will roll out in 2013.
GM plans to start production of the Cruze diesel in the second quarter, with vehicles hitting showrooms in April or May, a source close to the plan said, asking for anonymity because GM has not announced when production of the new Cruze will begin.
General Motors Co. North America President Mark Reuss said in mid-December that GM would be “putting the Cruze out here (in the) first quarter.”
“I’m thrilled with the car,” Reuss told journalists last month in Pontiac. “The car’s going to be great.”
Reuss also hinted that the company is interested in offering more diesel-powered options in the United States.
“There’s a place for diesels here. There’s a place for diesels in the future, as well,” he said in December. “At the end of the day, it’s still the most efficient thermodynamics of combustion that we have. The mass piece of it in the U.S. has been problematic. But now we’re beginning to produce clean diesels. We need some stability in the quality of fuel across the country, which that would help us calibrate and bring to market more effectively.”
The Cruze diesel will be built at GM’s Lordstown Assembly Plant near Youngstown, Ohio.
In August, GM announced it was investing $200 million into the Lordstown plant and $20 million at a metal center in Parma, Ohio, for tooling and equipment for a new Cruze model. The automaker planned to produce the current generation of the Cruze at Lordstown through model year 2014.
Diesel sales among all light-duty cars and trucks rose about 25 percent to 125,000 units in 2012, up from 100,000 in 2011.
Many new diesel models will be introduced over the next two years, including a diesel Jeep Grand Cherokee.