Cars.com Reviews the 2013 Chevrolet Malibu

2013ChevyMalibu

Chevy debuted the 2013 Malibu with a mild-hybrid system it called Eco. Now, you can finally buy a Malibu with a traditional and less expensive four-cylinder gas engine. How does it drive? Pretty well, according to Cars.com Managing Editor David Thomas, who found it an ideal commuter car. But even with a larger trunk than the Eco, there are still some areas where the Malibu comes up short.

2013 Chevrolet Malibu Review

Comments 

sheth

The Malibu interior has been praised by nearly everyone. According to this its underwhelming and barely competitive. Totally contradictory to what others have said. Also, the fusion only gets 22/31 or so with the base engine. You have to upgrade to ecoboost to best the malibus mileage. And of course the fusions two lower engines have substantially less power. In fact, sonata is only car with more stated stsndard hp and that car isn't sae rated so its unlikely that it makes 200hp. In spite of what was said here this should be one of the quicker cars in the class. Easily faster than passat, fusion and accord. As for rear seat space, the sonota has mediocre rear head and leg room but no one seems to mind. Numbers don't always lie, the Hyundai has merely adequate rear seat space and the car has been a hit.

Unfortunately, Dave seems to review these cars with a heavy focus on the brand or manufacturer. It's obvious that he went into this with low expectations based on the Chevy badge so he basically says this is an ok.car for a Chevy buy its not worth looking at for people with standards.

Johnothan Smileye

The only real negative I see with this car is its backseat. Everything else is subjective. I agree with the post above most have praised the interior. It is a different design but at least it is not boring.

Andy

@sheth Are the EPA figures out for the Fusion already? I couldn't find them anywhere.

Thomas

We recently shopped this entire car segment for three months and ended up buying a Toyota Camry. It's our first Toyota. We liked the Malibu's quietness but the interior has some cheap plastics, feels to heavy, and the rear seat is to tight. I didn't mind the rear end styling but my wife thought it was very ugly. in the end it came out last on our list behind the Camry, Sonata, Optima, Accord and Fusion. We would have bought the Optima but it was $2,400 more than the Camry when equipped the same. Also my wife wasn't crazy about the really low roof line. The Sonata was very nice but in the end had to much road noise and didn't feel as tightly built as the Camry.

In the future if Chevy wants us to consider them they need to do a better job with the details.

M

The new design looks more like a refresh compared to the new Ford Fusion. You need to put a 2012 Malibu and a 2013 side by side to notice that it was changed. The Optima and Fusion are more cutting edge in terms of style.

Hopefully, the new chevrolet will have a more non plasticky interior, because we are all fed up with that, give us a "german look a like" car

sheth

andy:

Ford has estimates for all 4 powertrains. Usually manufactuer estimates are pretty close to EPA. Base engine get same mileage as the 2012 which is why I find the assertion that the Malibu's mileage is way off the pace of the class to be laughable. Notice he didnt bother to mention the Passat which is rated at 22/31 with only 170hp. The Passat has been a sales hit in spite of its mediocre base engine and mileage. The passat is also the slowest car in this class with its volume engine. For this review, DT was very selective about which competitors he mentioned when trying to paint a picture of the Malibu being uncompetitive. MT estimated 0-60 for this car should be around 8 secs which puts its solidly midpack and ahead of the Sonata which is considerably lighter.

@thomas:

I havent been inside the new Malibu yet, but the pictures and reviews suggest the interior is quite nice. In anything, the Malibu has gotten better marks for its interior than the Camry. Automobile Mag said the Malibu's interior was clearly a class above the recently introduced Camry. The interior is the one area that has been almost universally praised.

@M:

The Malibu looks totally different. Wheelbase changed, width changed, the profile is totally different, the rear end is totally different. The front end is the only part that hasn't totally transformed. Unlike the 2013 Accord, its pretty easy to tell that this is a new car.

sheth

@andy:

Forgot to mention the estimates for the Fusion- 26/37 for Ecoboost 1.6, 23/33 for 2.0 turbo and 22/33 for base car.

Card13

sheth,

Your complaints are slightly exaggerated. Dave definitely praised the interior, but simply said that there were specific materials that didn't live up to the segment’s bests. His comments about fuel economy were maybe a tad harsh, but he did point that there are already 4 other cars that can beat it, plus new ones in the pipeline. The complaints about power were mostly rooted in hesitation, not that the engine is too weak. Power figures and weight are not necessarily a good indicator of which car is faster. I don't think he was hard on the vehicle because it is a Chevy, but mostly because this segment is so competitive and ever-changing. If this model doesn't leapfrog the competition, it was fall behind very quickly.

CJ

Cars.com was kind in their review as the Malibu is the weakest car in it's category. Every single car outclasses it. I hope Chevy goes back to the drawing board otherwise they'll have to rename it the Avis Malibu.

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