Enthusiasts are, it must be said, terrible customers. We care, we shout, we don't buy, and then we complain about how the things we like that we didn't buy are gone now, replaced by the things that people actually did buy. But by God that knowledge won't stop us from wanting Chevy's latest concept, yelling about it, and not buying it!

To be fair, not buying it will in no small part be because this is a Brazilian concept. But wherever it's from, it fills a big gap in Chevy's lineup. The Cruze SS concept takes Chevy's humdrum compact and doubles the power to make a hot hatch truly worthy of the name.

Debuted at the Sao Paolo Auto Show this week, the concept makes use of Chevy's 1.4-liter engine, which normally makes about 150 hp in the Cruze, and turns the wick all the way up so that it produces 295 hp.

The team behind it has also made some undisclosed suspension upgrades to "maximize vehicle performance" and added a chin spoiler, painted the calipers red, and finished the rear spoiler (among other things) in gloss black to make it look appropriately speedy.


Inside, the Cruze SS has gained bucket seats, had some harnesses installed, and a racing steering wheel (although it apparently looks exactly like the normal wheel) fitted to make sure the driver knows exactly what kind of car they're in control of.

Now, this is still a concept, so no need to get too excited, but it would be very nice to see this car make it into production. Although a Cruze SS's sales likely wouldn't be enormous (if it ever came to North America, which it probably won't, but we can dream), it might help people to remember that the Cruze, you know, exists. And it might even draw a few of those people who now remember it into the showroom.

We're aware that regulatory hurdles would likely make a 300 hp Cruze difficult in the US, but even 250 hp would put it in the same ballpark as the Golf GTI and the Veloster N and give the Cruze the spice it so desperately needs.