Review of the 2016 Chevrolet Malibu
The midsize family sedan is back, and Chevy dealers in KY and the rest of the country are eager to have the recently released Malibu in their lots. A highly competitive midsize sedan market has been around for years, and in order to thrive automobile companies need to make miracles happen with their long-standing models.
Which is exactly what Chevy did.
A Fresh Design
Sporting a complete redesign, the generic looking Malibu is a thing of the past. In its place is a sleek Impala-influenced design. Chevy grafted the well-loved parts of the Impala – the bold front end, sweeping rear flanks, split grille – and combined them with the mid-size Malibu frame. Giving the Malibu the fresh new look it deserves after a decade on the market.
The Malibu is 2 inches longer than the current model and the wheelbase has been increased by 4 inches. The redesign also makes the Malibu 300 pounds lighter than previous models, which helps with its fuel economy.
Thanks to its redesign, the space in the trunk and cabin has increased, rewarding buyers with a long-awaited roomier interior.
There are some new technology features on the Malibu, the center piece being the 7 (or 8 depending on the model) inch touch screen display that is a versatile hub of technology.
Teen Driving is one feature that can be used with the screen, and is engaged with a PIN code that allows parents to monitor their teen’s driving habits. While this may infuriate teens, parents can add multiple features to the touch screen to help ensure their teen is driving safe. It also includes features like triggering audible and visual warnings when approaching a preset maximum speed, or muting audio when front seat occupants aren’t wearing their seat belts.
Other fun features include 4G LTE connectivity with a wifi hotspot, dual USB ports for rear seat passengers, and a wireless phone charging pad.
Upgraded Safety Features
All Malibu trims will house 10 air bags deployed by an advanced 360-degree sensor that measures the severity of an impact to adjust the inflation accordingly. When the air bags deploy, OnStar Advisor (if equipped depending on trim) is automatically alerted, contacting emergency services if you need help. If you don’t respond, GPS technology will help OnStar Advisor guide emergency services to your destination quickly.
Some other optional safety features include lane keeping assist, blind-spot and rear cross-traffic alerts, adaptive cruise control, parking sensors, and front pedestrian warning. Even if you don’t get all these optional safety features, the standard 10 airbags coupled with the basic safety features are more than enough to keep you safe.
A high-strength steel safety cage helps reinforce the frame of the cabin, which is surprisingly strong.
The base trim has a 1.5-liter four-cylinder that is rated at 160 horsepower paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. The engine combined with the reduced weight of the frame will let the Malibu achieve 27 mpg city and 37 highway. Impressive horsepower and fuel economy for a midsize sedan. There will also be a hybrid available using a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine and a two-motor electric drive, reaching 47 mpg combined.
But, if you are more interested in performance and don’t mind sacrificing fuel economy, then you can upgrade to a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine putting out 259 horsepower paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. Getting an average 22 mpg city and 32 mpg highway for an engine that size.
The sleek Impala-influenced design of the Malibu is sure to turn some heads as it goes down the road. Starting at $21,625, the new look with state of the art technology, safety features, and engine options should make the Malibu a strong contender in the midsize sedan market.