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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.

KBB Expert Ratings

  • 7.2
  • 7.1
  • 8.1
  • 7.1
  • 5.9
  • N/A
How It Ranks

#28

out of 30

Fuel Economy

#3

out of 31

Horsepower
View all rankings

Consumer Rating

7.9 out of 10
View all
consumer ratings
2013 Chevrolet Malibu Low/wide front photo 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
2013 Chevrolet Malibu Front angle view photo

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 Dashboard, center console, gear shifter view 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
2013 Chevrolet Malibu Engine photo

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

The 2013 Chevrolet Malibu mid-size sedan carries a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starting just over $23,000, while the 1LT model starts closer to $25,000. The Malibu Eco 1SA starts close to $26,000, with an additional $1,500 for the 2SA model. A fully-loaded turbocharged 2LTZ tops out around $34,000. To get a better idea of what people in your area are paying for the Malibu, check out Kelley Blue Book's Fair Purchase Price at the bottom of this page. Aside from fuel economy, the Malibu's significant competitive disadvantage, in comparison to its rivals the Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, Ford Fusion and Hyundai Sonata is projected residual value. Kelley Blue Book used-car residual values indicate that the majority of the Malibu's competitors will fare better down the road.

To find out what consumers are really paying for this vehicle, first select a style to see the Fair Purchase Price| Calculate payments for this vehicle

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2013 Chevrolet Malibu Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
7.9
Out of 10

Based on 83 Ratings for the 2013 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    7.9/10
    Quality
    8.1/10
  • Reliability
    8.6/10
    Performance
    8.1/10
  • Comfort
    8.2/10
    Styling
    8.0/10

Very quiet smooth riding car with powerful engine

By on Wednesday, July 09, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,614

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
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Smooth and quiet and very comfortable"

Cons: "Not an exciting driver's car -"

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

"I have the 2014 Chevrolet Malibu 1LS which is well equipped and rides quietly and smoothly on the highway. Great gasoline mileage over 30mpg on highway. This car has auto stop engine which helps save on gas when stopped at traffic light and then starts up quickly when your foot is taken off the brake. The one feature missing on the 1LS model is a standard rear view camera and does not have standard Satellite radio. I added the dealer installed remote start which came in handy this past winter. This car has comfortable supportive seats up front, though the rear seating is a bit tight."

Great road and city vehicle. Solid

By on Sunday, July 06, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 17,556

10 6.0
overall rating 6 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
6/10
Value
5/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
6/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
2/10
Comfort
8/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6

"My 2013 Malibu is basically a good, solid vehicle. It handles well, is comfortable on the highway and in city driving. Great fuel economy (36mpg highway/23mpg city). The major fault I find with it is the front end "rake". The nose sits way to low and is constantly scraping pavement when going in and out of driveways, parking lots, fuel stations etc. There is a rubber lip below the front end clip that is the primary culprit, and I can't get anyone to remove it."

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Good style and fuel efficient

By on Wednesday, July 02, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 23,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

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

"This is the only vehicle that I have purchased that actually exceeds the EPA estimated fuel economy! I get more than 40 MPG on the highway and have had no reliability issues."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

Nice Whip

By on Wednesday, June 25, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 6,800

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: "Affordable, even when well equipped!"

Cons: "So far nothing..."

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

"I bought this car in November of 2013 and have since enjoyed it quite a bit. The 2.0 Turbo motor is phenomenal, it throws you back in your seat when you're in a hurry. The acoustics of the Pioneer premium sound are amazing as well, outstanding clarity all around. I fit comfortably at 6'3" in it, and I love the look and feel of my black leather. What a car!"

7 people out of 14 found this review helpful

car ok, workmanship on things not very good

By on Monday, June 09, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 9,000

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "rides well and is comfrotable on long trip"

Cons: "quality of workmanship is poor for price of car."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 3

"in 2 weeks one of the rubber things on the front bumper tore off. in less than 6 months the seam in the front drivers seat split. which is covered under warranty but having trouble getting dealer ship to fix it."

10 people out of 20 found this review helpful

best car I ever owned

By on Sunday, June 01, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 15,048

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: "quiet and economical"

Cons: "lost a little trunk room due to battery storage"

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

"this car is real quiet and gives me the best fuel economy I have ever had in any car I ever owned. 38+ mpg on the hwy and 25+ around town."

9 people out of 12 found this review helpful

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