Top Safety Pick

2012 Chevrolet Cruze

small car / 4-door sedan

2012 Chevrolet Cruze 4-door sedan
2011 Chevrolet Cruze shown

Crashworthiness

Rating overview
Small overlap front: driver-side
Moderate overlap front
Side
Roof strength
Head restraints & seats

Other available safety features

  • Standard daytime running lights

Key

  • G
    Good
  • A
    Acceptable
  • M
    Marginal
  • P
    Poor
  • Superior
  • Advanced
  • Basic

Some ratings use a scale of Poor to Good. Others range from Basic to Superior.

Small overlap front: driver-side

Rating applies to 2011-15 models

Tested vehicle: 2013 Chevrolet Cruze LS 4-door

The Chevrolet Cruze was introduced in the 2011 model year as a replacement for the Chevrolet Cobalt. Beginning with 2013 Cruze models, the driver frontal airbag was changed to a simpler, "smart" design, characterized by General Motors as having flexible venting technology. The small overlap frontal ratings apply to both airbag designs.

Beginning with the 2016 model year, the car was renamed the Cruze Limited and sold when new only to fleets. The Cruze Limited shares no ratings with the redesigned 2016 Chevrolet Cruze.

Overall evaluation
Structure and safety cage
Driver injury measures
Head/neck
Chest
Hip/thigh
Lower leg/foot
Driver restraints and dummy kinematics
The dummy’s head barely contacted the frontal airbag before sliding off the left side as the steering column moved 11 cm to the right, leaving the head vulnerable to contact with forward side structure. Additionally, the seat belt allowed excessive forward excursion of the dummy’s head and torso. The side curtain airbag deployed but does not have sufficient forward coverage to protect the head from contact with forward side structure and outside objects. The side torso airbag deployed.

Action shot taken during the small overlap frontal crash test.

The dummy's position in relation to the door frame, steering wheel, and instrument panel after the crash test indicates that the driver's survival space was not maintained well.

During the crash, the dummy's head barely contacted the frontal airbag before sliding off to the left as the steering column moved to the right. The seat belt allowed the dummy to move too far forward, as is evident from the gap between the seat back and the dummy's torso. The side curtain airbag did not extend far enough forward toward the A-pillar.

Despite extensive intrusion of the door hinge pillar and instrument panel, risk of injuries to the dummy's legs and feet was low.

Technical measurements for this test

Measures of occupant compartment intrusion on driver side

Test ID CEN1312
Lower occupant compartment
Lower hinge pillar max (cm) 20
Footrest (cm) 16
Left toepan (cm) 10
Brake pedal (cm) 8
Parking brake (cm)
Rocker panel lateral average (cm) 5
Upper occupant compartment
Steering column 11
Upper hinge pillar max (cm) 19
Upper dash (cm) 19
Lower instrument panel (cm) 16

Driver injury measures

Test ID CEN1312
Head
HIC-15 70
Peak gs at hard contact no contact
Neck
Tension (kN) 1.2
Extension bending moment (Nm) 6
Maximum Nij 0.25
Chest maximum compression (mm) 18
Femur (kN)
Left 4.2
Right 0.4
Knee displacement (mm)
Left 9
Right 2
Knee-thigh-hip injury risk (%)
Left 2
Right 0
Maximum tibia index
Left 0.64
Right 0.44
Tibia axial force (kN)
Left 2.9
Right 0.9
Foot acceleration (g)
Left 44
Right 51

How the driver-side small overlap front test is conducted

Moderate overlap front

Rating applies to 2011-15 models

Tested vehicle: 2013 Chevrolet Cruze LT1 4-door

The Chevrolet Cruze was introduced in the 2011 model year as a replacement for the Chevrolet Cobalt. Beginning with 2013 Cruze models, the driver frontal airbag was changed to a simpler, "smart" design, characterized by General Motors as having flexible venting technology.

Moderate overlap frontal ratings are assigned by the Institute based on two tests conducted by GM as part of frontal crash test verification. The first car was a 2011 model; the second car was also a 2011 model, but the car was retrofitted with the smart airbag used in 2013 production models. As expected, the newer airbag did not contribute to any significant changes in test results. Therefore, the ratings are based on both tests, but vehicle specifications are provided for the Cruze used in the later test.

Beginning with the 2016 model year, the car was renamed the Cruze Limited and sold when new only to fleets. The Cruze Limited shares no ratings with the redesigned 2016 Chevrolet Cruze.

Overall evaluation
Structure and safety cage
Driver injury measures
Head/neck
Chest
Leg/foot, left
Leg/foot, right
Driver restraints and dummy kinematics
Technical measurements for this test

Measures of occupant compartment intrusion on driver side

Test ID VTF1005 VTF1122
Footwell intrusion
Footrest (cm) 1 3
Left (cm) 10 7
Center (cm) 7 4
Right (cm) 2 1
Brake pedal (cm) 3 1
Instrument panel rearward movement
Left (cm) -1 0
Right (cm) -1 0
Steering column movement
Upward (cm) -1 -2
Rearward (cm) -5 -6
A-pillar rearward movement (cm) 0 1

Driver injury measures

Test ID VTF1005 VTF1122
Head
HIC-15 182 424
Peak gs at hard contact no contact no contact
Neck
Tension (kN) 1.4 0.9
Extension bending moment (Nm) 6 16
Maximum Nij 0.33 0.26
Chest maximum compression (mm) 35 30
Legs
Femur force - left (kN) 1.3 0.7
Femur force - right (kN) 1.0 1.2
Knee displacement - left (mm) 4 2
Knee displacement - right (mm) 3 2
Maximum tibia index - left 0.54 0.33
Maximum tibia index - right 0.41 0.43
Tibia axial force - left (kN) 2.8 2.5
Tibia axial force - right (kN) 2.1 2.2
Foot acceleration (g)
Left 56 48
Right 80 51

How the moderate overlap front test is conducted

Side

Rating applies to 2011-15 models

Tested vehicle: 2011 Chevrolet Cruze 2LT 4-door with standard front and rear head curtain airbags and standard front and rear seat-mounted torso airbags

The Chevrolet Cruze was introduced in the 2011 model year as a replacement for the Chevrolet Cobalt.

Beginning with the 2016 model year, the car was renamed the Cruze Limited and sold when new only to fleets. The Cruze Limited shares no ratings with the redesigned 2016 Chevrolet Cruze.

Overall evaluation
Structure and safety cage
Driver injury measures
Head/neck
Torso
Pelvis/leg
Driver head protection
Rear passenger injury measures
Head/neck
Torso
Pelvis/leg
Rear passenger head protection

View of the vehicle and barrier just after the crash test.

View of the vehicle after the crash with doors removed, showing the side airbags and damage to the occupant compartment.

Smeared greasepaint shows where the driver dummy's head was protected from being hit by hard structures by the side curtain airbag.

Smeared greasepaint shows where the rear passenger dummy’s head was protected by the side airbag.

Technical measurements for this test

Measures of occupant compartment intrusion on driver side

Test ID CES1013
B-pillar to longitudinal centerline of driver's seat (cm) -15.5
Negative numbers indicate the amount by which the crush stopped short of the seat centerline.

Driver injury measures

Test ID CES1013
Head HIC-15 289
Neck
Tension (kN) 0.9
Compression (kN) 0.4
Shoulder
Lateral deflection (mm) 36
Lateral force (kN) 1.3
Torso
Maximum deflection (mm) 34
Average deflection (mm) 33
Maximum deflection rate (m/s) 4.68
Maximum viscous criterion (m/s) 0.67
Pelvis
Iliac force (kN) 2.2
Acetabulum force (kN) 2.4
Combined force (kN) 4.5
Left femur
L-M force (kN) 0.4
L-M moment (Nm) 132
A-P moment (Nm) -30

Passenger injury measures

Test ID CES1013
Head HIC-15 146
Neck
Tension (kN) 0.5
Compression (kN) 0.5
Shoulder
Lateral deflection (mm) 19
Lateral force (kN) 0.6
Torso
Maximum deflection (mm) 24
Average deflection (mm) 22
Maximum deflection rate (m/s) 3.30
Maximum viscous criterion (m/s) 0.37
Pelvis
Iliac force (kN) 0.3
Acetabulum force (kN) 1.2
Combined force (kN) 1.5
Left femur
L-M force (kN) 0.4
L-M moment (Nm) 61
A-P moment (Nm) -19

How the side crash test is conducted

Roof strength

Rating applies to 2011-15 models

Tested vehicle: 2011 Chevrolet Cruze LS 4-door

Overall evaluation
Curb weight 3,143 lbs
Peak force 15,944 lbs
Strength-to-weight ratio 5.07

How the roof strength test is conducted

Head restraints & seats

Seat type: Manual cloth seats

Overall evaluation
Dynamic rating
Seat/head restraint geometry
Technical measurements for this test
Seat type Manual cloth seats
Geometry
Backset (mm) 30
Distance below top of head (mm) 20
Seat design parameters
Pass/fail Pass
Max T1 acceleration (g) 12.0
Head contact time (ms) 53
Force rating 1
Neck forces
Max neck shear force (N) 3
Max neck tension (N) 261

How the head restraint & seat test is conducted