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2013 Chevrolet Malibu

Overview
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2013 Chevrolet Malibu Review

By

KBB Expert Rating: 7.2

For 2013, Chevrolet has remade its popular Malibu and Malibu Eco sedans, infusing them with more distinctive styling both inside and out. Complementing the new styling are improved technologies, such as the MyLink infotainment system that allows voice control of the phone, radio, navigation and iPod interface. In a nod to maximum fuel economy, the Malibu Eco sedan employs a small electric motor and lithium-ion battery to assist the gasoline engine for improved fuel economy and power. Although the Malibu Eco does not deliver the remarkable city fuel economy of pure hybrids like the Toyota Camry Hybrid and Ford Fusion Hybrid, it does do well on the highway. The third and final member of the 2013 lineup is the Malibu Turbo, which sacrifices only a negligible amount of fuel economy in favor of an all-new 259-horsepower turbocharged engine.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you are looking for an American-built mid-size sedan with good fuel economy, excellent handling and a remarkably quiet cabin, the 2013 Chevrolet Malibu will fit the bill.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If outstanding fuel economy is at the top of your list, the Toyota Camry Hybrid (as high as 43 mpg in the city, 39 on the highway) might be worth a closer look. The Camry Hybrid offers 30-percent better fuel economy and more horsepower at a mere $700 premium over the Malibu Eco.

What's New for 2013

The all-new-for-2013 Chevrolet Malibu features an evolutionary redesign with new drivetrains, fresh interior and exterior styling, and refined dynamics. Since the majority of leading mid-size sedans supplement their mainstream models with a more fuel-efficient version and a performance variant, the new Chevy Malibu is offered in three distinct flavors: Standard, Turbo and Eco.

Driving the Malibu

Driving Impressions A composed, quiet ride characterizes the 2013 Malibu's on-road demeanor. Although fuel efficiency is one of its fundamental roles, the standard 4-cylinder's 197 horsepower is sufficient for any practical purpose....

Unlike many of its performance-based rivals, the Malibu Turbo delivers strong acceleration, yet maintains the exceptional ride quality of the standard model. Instead of offering a full-hybrid option, the 2013 Chevy Malibu makes use of GM's new eAssist system, which consists of an air-cooled lithium-ion battery and an Auto-Stop feature that automatically shuts off the engine when the vehicle is stopped. Especially handy in stop-and-go traffic, the eAssist battery waits to restart the gasoline engine until the moment your foot lifts off the brake pedal. The transition is virtually imperceptible, and eAssist further improves fuel economy by utilizing a 15-horsepower electric motor under heavy acceleration. While we observed admirable highway fuel economy with our test vehicle, the Malibu Eco returned a rather mediocre 22 miles per gallon in the city under normal driving conditions.

MYLINK INFOTAINMENT SYSTEM
Chevrolet's MyLink infotainment system features one of the most user-friendly multimedia interfaces on the market. MyLink's various features, including smartphone integration for Pandora and Stitcher applications, Bluetooth streaming audio for wireless MP3/WMA connectivity and a comprehensive Gracenote database for simple music related voice-commands, are clearly displayed on a large 7-inch touch-screen that flips open to reveal a hidden storage compartment.

AMBIENT INTERIOR LIGHTING
The Malibu's blue ambient lighting reflects off of strategically-located chrome accents throughout the cabin to create a modern, inviting ambiance.

2013 Chevrolet Malibu Details
2013 Chevrolet Malibu photo Interior

The 5-passenger Chevy Malibu provides an airy upscale cabin, where available leather-appointed seating surfaces and coordinating soft-touch materials are complemented by metallic silver trim and chrome accents. The front seats are adequately comfortable, with the driver's seat offering 8-way power adjustability and 4-way power-operated lumbar support. Despite their pleasant appearance, the placements of the chrome accents are not ideal, as they reflect a considerable amount of glare on sunshiny days. The rear seats feature a 60/40-split design, but legroom is average at best, thanks to bulky front seats and a shorter wheelbase than its predecessor.

Exterior
2013 Chevrolet Malibu photo

Chevrolet strived to give the 2013 Malibu mid-size sedan a sportier look by borrowing numerous styling cues from its close relatives, the Camaro and Corvette. The new exterior architecture, while stylish, is actually functional and provides the Malibu with one of the lowest coefficient of drag ratings in its class along with reduced wind noise. The Malibu Eco is an example of the notion that wider is truly better, boasting a broad, aggressive stance with front and rear tracks that are over two inches wider than those of the 2012 model. The Malibu Eco rides on standard 17-inch 5-spoke alloy wheels wrapped in low-rolling-resistance rubber to enhance fuel economy and reduce tire noise.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The generously-equipped 2013 Malibu Eco offers a broad array of standard features. Highlights include 17-inch alloy wheels, heated outside mirrors, fabric-trimmed seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, Bluetooth hands-free phone capability, a full-color driver-information display, MyLink infotainment system with a high-resolution 7-inch touch-screen, a USB port for your MP3/WMA player and blue ambient interior lighting. The Malibu 2LT is similarly-equipped as the Eco 2SA, while the LTZ offers such luxuries as an 8-way power passenger seat, leather seating and 18-inch wheels. Key standard safety features include 10 airbags and GM's OnStar emergency services with a complimentary 6-month trial subscription.

Optional Equipment

Most feature content varies by trim level and include Chevrolet's MyLink infotainment system with a 7-inch touch-screen display, a premium 9-speaker Pioneer audio system, a rear backup camera, 19-inch alloy wheels, an 8-way power driver's seat, a full-color driver information center, and a Homelink universal garage door opener. The 2SA trim offers a Navigation Package option, which includes an SD-based navigation system, leather-trimmed seats, heated front seats and a driver's-seat memory. These options are also available on the LT and LTZ trims.

Under the Hood

The 2013 Chevy Malibu offers a trio of engine choices: the base 2.5-liter Ecotec 4-cylinder, 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder, and the 2.4-liter 4-cylinder paired with GM's eAssist system found in the 2013 Malibu Eco. The Malibu's lone transmission offering is a 6-speed automatic transmission with a manual-shift mode. On the Eco models, the compact eAssist battery resides behind the rear seats. The 15-horsepower electric motor assists the 182 horsepower engine, though it is not capable of independently driving the front wheels like a traditional hybrid.

2.4-liter inline-4
182 horsepower @ 6,200 rpm
172 lb-ft of torque @ 4,900 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 25/37 mpg

2.5-liter inline-4
197 horsepower @ 6,300 rpm
191 lb-ft of torque @ 4,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/34 mpg

2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4
259 horsepower @ 5,300 rpm
260 lb-ft of torque @ 5,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/30 mpg

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2013 Chevrolet Malibu Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.0
Out of 10

Based on 117 Ratings for the 2013 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    7.9/10
    Quality
    8.3/10
  • Reliability
    8.8/10
    Performance
    8.1/10
  • Comfort
    8.3/10
    Styling
    8.4/10

the best money can buy

By on Friday, June 19, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 1,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
6/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "great price, well equipped, excellent waranty"

Cons: "no usb, no 110volts outlet on my LS model"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"i got this car new for 20500.00 after 6700.00 of incitative. that is why i say (this is the best money can buy). comfort and millage is great. i do find the back seat comfortable as opposite to KBB reviews. the overall waranty is better than most; 5 years 100,000 miles. better then all other korean, japanese etc cars."

12 people out of 14 found this review helpful

Great design but a noisy car

By on Wednesday, June 03, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 22,000

10 6.0
overall rating 6 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
6/10
Value
6/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
5/10

Pros: "Sharp design, great gas mileage."

Cons: "Noisy interior. Very noisy."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 4

"My Malibu is the first new car I have ever bought. Loved the design and the overall looks of the car. But right away I noticed the noise level. It is so loud on certain road surfaces you cannot hear the person sitting next to you. I changed the Good Year Assurance tires and that helped bring the noise level down about 40%. But it is still a very noisy car inside. I cannot believe the engineers did not notice this? Anyone who rides in my car notices it right away. And I have talked to other owners who have the same complaint. Why is this?"

9 people out of 18 found this review helpful

My Favorite Vehicle Yet!

By on Saturday, May 30, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 6,250

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Price, comfort, power, and Looks"

Cons: "Fuel economy could be a little better"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Love love love this car. Comfortable, plenty of power, great looks! My first Chevy car and won't be my last. Switched from Fords and I am very happy I made the switch."

2 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Nice ride, get the turbo!

By on Wednesday, May 20, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 7,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Fun car to drive and with spoiler looks good"

Cons: "Rear camera - usless, not much view rear window"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Don't know why all the bad reviews our 2014 is a big upgrade from our Altima. If you're not happy with the interior size or the inadequate engine performance I would think a person would check into that before purchase. It's quite and feels solid. The ride, handling and comfort rate high. Our 600 mile trip surprised me with 33 MPG! and the around town driving is 24 MPG. What's best about this car is the engine. In normal driving the car responds to every throttle response and at certain RPM it will definitely set you back in your seat. Transmission shifted great also."

8 people out of 14 found this review helpful

Nothing but problems!

By on Tuesday, May 19, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 38,000

10 5.0
overall rating 5 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
5/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Great gas mileage"

Cons: "Not reliable!"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"The first 16 months I owned this car, it was great. I was getting 31 mpg and no issues. Once it hit 35,099, the Service Parking Brake light came on. Took it to the dealership and they took over 2 hours to come up with a decision. They ordered some parts. Two days later, I was driving to work and the engine seized up! Got it towed into the dealership and they called GM. Sent out a replacement engine and it was knocking, so 2nd new engine was ordered. They also fixed the Service parking Brake issue...well, they thought so. I got it back on a Monday. Wednesday night, engine is knocking again. Took it back. Now to fix that and the ac has quit. I seriously just want to walk away from this car, and I probably would if it wouldn't hurt my credit."

6 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Nice Vehicle with pretty good gas mileage

By on Saturday, May 16, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 19,500

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "gas mileage, comfort"

Cons: "back seat a small on leg room, larger blind spot"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I am not a "car guy" so my review is simple. I wanted a car that I could comfortably carry passnegers in occasionaly and that got good gas mileage. The front two seats are very roomy. The back seat works great for kids but is a little tight for adults. Also the design of the car leaves a pretty good blind spot. It took a while to get used to not being able to see quite as much out of the windows as I was used too. Owned this car for two ears and have not had any problems."

7 people out of 9 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?