2013 Chevrolet Malibu Review | Toronto Sun

2013 Chevrolet Malibu Preview
2013 Chevrolet Malibu
By Joe Duarte, Toronto Sun
Malibu goes around the world
General Motors proved its intentions for the 2013 Chevrolet Malibu on the global stage by introducing the mid-sized sedan at 2011 shows in Shanghai and New York. The car will be sold in 100 countries starting early in 2012.
First out of the gate will be a new ECO model early in the new year, with the more traditional trims (LS, LT and LTZ) joining the line-up in summer 2012.
The new Malibu ECO gets a version of the powertrain (2.4-litre four-cylinder engine assisted by an electric motor/generator that provides up to 11 hp of assist but adds just 29 kg to the overall weight) that debuted on new Buick models (Regal and Lacrosse) several months earlier, and is preliminarily rated at 9.0 litres per 100 km (26 mpg) in the city and 6.2 (38 mpg) on the highway. The car stores electricity in a lithium-ion battery and features stop/start technology to further help reduce fuel consumption. A hill assist program stops the car from rolling on a hill when the engine is automatically shut off (to save fuel).
Following the trend started by the Hyundai Sonata in 2010, Malibu will get power only from four-cylinder engines, with LS, LT and LTZ models all powered by a 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine. It has not yet been decided whether a turbocharged version will be available (but it’s a good bet it will). All Malibus use six-speed automatic transmissions.
Like its smaller Cruze ECO stablemate, the Malibu ECO features underbody aero enhancements and electronically controlled shutters in the lower grille openings. The instrument display features an Eco gauge to monitor driving behaviour and help the driver achieve better fuel economy. According to GM, Malibu ECO can travel up to 885 km (550 miles) on a full tank of gasoline (60 litres).
Ride and handling is European in character, with a solid body structure, responsive electric assist steering with better on-centre feel, MacPherson front strut and rear multi-link suspension set-up, large ventilated discs up front and solid in the rear, and a host of electronic assists ? including traction control, stability control, and anti-lock brakes with brake force distribution, brake assist, brake fade assist and corner brake control.
The all-new Malibu features a smaller wheelbase but wider track than the model it replaces, creating an interior that is supposedly four cubic feet larger, with a trunk that is one cubic foot larger. All models get the new Chevrolet MyLink connectivity system, to integrate online services such as Bluetooth connectivity, Pandora internet radio and Stitcher SmartRadio. It offers a full range of infotainment options, including a navigations system, and a storage system behind the flat panel multimedia screen.
The new Chevy Malibu will be built in multiple locations around the globe, including the Kansas and Detroit, in the United States.
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