If you dig up some of our older blog articles you will discover that the cruise is not a favourite of ours. It featured high on the list of worst cars every made and we tend to advise clients to avoid buying them. There is an extensive list of common faults with these cars, most of which stem from the family of engines that are used across the range of Holden cars. Unfortunately the motors used in the Holden Barnina, Astra, Trax and the Cruze are all based off the same platform and are not much chop.
Common issues to plague the Cruze are also common across the other motors however there are also some new common issues that are specific to the Cruze.
The Most common of these is the internal failure of the engine oil cooler. When this component fails it fills the cooling system with engine oil. The first signs of trouble are often the coolant header tank full of what appears to be chocolate milk. Many mechanics quickly come to the conclusion that this is a blown head gasket and go about removing the cylinder head. The actual fault can be rectified by replacing the engine oil cooler. The Oil cooler is on the front of the engine block below the exhaust manifold, its a bit of work to remove but its not overly complex.
The cruze is known for premature failure of the automatic transmissions. This is a super common fault and is required to be repaired by a automatic transmission specialist. The faults in the transmission were so common that replacing the transmission with a second hand unit almost promises you will experience the same problems in the near future.
Early signs that your cruze is giving transmission trouble include flaring between gears, jerky gear shifts, difficulty engaging reverse and difficulty going from reverse to drive.
The PCV valve on the cruze is common for failure causing the car to idle poory, have average acceleration and in some cases bring on the check engine warning light.
Ignition coil failure is also common on the cruze. As with all the small Holden engines it is one unit for all four ignition coils, this means if one has failed all four get replaced at once, making the cost of replacement rather expensive.
The Cruze is generally considered a bit of a lemon in the recall department too with several safety recalls issued globally on this car for issues that could cause the car to spontaneously burst into flames, loose drive or roll itself down hills.
As a general rule we advise avoiding buying a Holden Cruze but if your heart is set on owning one and you want to buy one second hand be sure to check these common things we listed before you purchase one.