2019 Chevrolet Malibu Rs 101 1568289282

2023 Chevrolet Malibu Review, Pricing, and Specs

Overview

For those looking for a new Chevy sedan, the 2023 Malibu is the best option because, well, it’s the only option. In a segment full of more impressive alternatives – namely the Honda Accord and Hyundai Sonata – the Malibu is our least favorite. It’s not that we don’t appreciate its comfortable interior or pleasant driving character; it’s more that the ‘Bu isn’t as well equipped as rivals and its cabin is undermined by poor materials. Still, we think that, like us, most buyers will find its exterior styling attractive, and the sedan’s standard turbo four-cylinder engine is powerful enough to get from A to B without drawing attention to itself. What the 2023 Chevy Malibu lacks in standard driver aids, it makes up for with its list of desirable infotainment features, including wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Plus, people who want technology like blind spot monitoring or adaptive cruise control can add it – it just costs extra.

What’s new for 2023?

Horsepower fans will be disappointed to learn the 2023 Malibu is losing its most powerful engine. That’s because the 250-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder has been dropped. With it goes the top-level Premier trim, which is essentially replaced by the 2LT. Other than that, Chevy’s family sedan is unchanged.

Prices and which one to buy

We recommend buying the LT trim, as it comes with more standard features than the lowly LS. The LT comes standard with 17-inch wheels, dual-zone automatic climate control, remote engine control, heated front seats and a power-adjustable driver’s seat. Every LT also features automatic emergency braking and lane assist, but a blind-spot monitor and rear cross-traffic alert can be added with the $545 Driver Confidence package. For a sportier look, we might recommend the Sport Edition or Midnight Edition, which adds black 19-inch wheels and black body trim.

Engine, transmission and performance

Unlike many other family sedans, the 2023 Malibu is only available with a single powertrain. There is also no hybrid or all-wheel drive option. The Chevy features a dutiful 163-hp turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine that drives the front wheels through a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). The version we tested recorded a completely average 7.8-second zero-to-60-mph time. This combination is slower than similar competitors in our acceleration tests, but it delivered a smooth, even pull. For those who want a speed demon for the whole family, check out the Hyundai Sonata N Line or the Kia K5 GT, both of which have 290-hp engines that will shoot them to 60 mph in about 5 seconds.

Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG

In terms of EPA fuel-mileage estimates, the Malibu’s lone engine underperforms the equivalent base powertrains in the Accord and the Toyota Camry. The Chevy is rated at 30 mpg combined, which is down 2 mpg from last year. Still, its turbocharged 1.5-liter managed a respectable 34 mpg over the course of our 75-mph highway fuel-economy route. For more information on the Malibu’s fuel economy, visit the EPA’s website.

Interior, comfort and cargo

Although the Malibu’s interior is not the finest or the quietest, it is comfortable and ergonomically friendly. The cabin has competitive passenger space and options, but most alternatives have better outward visibility. The Malibu’s symmetrical dashboard and large opening under the center stack make the cabin feel spacious. The front seats have a wide base and supportive side bolsters, but their back cushions are too narrow for some occupants. The rear seat has less legroom than the Accord’s rear seat, but it still fits our mature frames. The Malibu boasts a large trunk with ample carrying capacity; it also has plenty of interior storage space even though it’s not the class.

Infotainment and connectivity

Chevy fits every Malibu with a touchscreen infotainment system that includes plenty of desirable options—Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and a mobile Wi-Fi hotspot. While the touchscreen interface is easy to interpret, the system loses ground to the competition, lacking a convenient rotary control knob as a secondary means of interacting with the interface.

Safety and Driver Assistance Features

While the Chevy sedan can be had with all the high-tech aids that help protect modern families, none of them come standard. For more information on the Malibu’s crash test results, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) websites. Key safety features include:

  • Available automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection
  • Available lane departure warning with lane keeping assist
  • Adaptive cruise control available

Warranty and Maintenance Cover

The Malibu has competitive limited and powertrain warranties, but its corrosion protection and roadside assistance are longer than most competitors in this match. Likewise, the Chevy only offers one complimentary scheduled service visit while the Camry is covered for two years or 25,000 miles.

  • Limited warranty covers three years or 36,000 miles
  • Powertrain warranty covers five years or 60,000 miles
  • Complimentary maintenance is covered for the first visit

Specifications

Specifications

2019 Chevrolet Malibu 1.5T RS

VEHICLE TYPE
front engine, front wheel drive, 5-passenger, 4-door sedan

PRICE AS TESTED
$25,840 (base price: $25,095)

ENGINE TYPE
turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve inline-4, aluminum block and head, direct fuel injection

Displacement
91 cu in, 1490 cc

Force
160 hp @ 5700 rpm

Torque
184 lb-ft @ 2500 rpm

TRANSMISSION
continuously variable automatic

CHASSIS
Suspension (F/R): struts/multilink
Brakes (F/R): 11.8 inch ventilated disc, 11.3 inch disc
Tires: Continental ProContact TX, 245/45R-18 96H M+S TPC

DIMENSIONS
Wheelbase: 111.4 inches
Length: 193.8 inches
Width: 73.0 inches
Height: 57.6 inches
Passenger volume: 108 cu ft
Hull volume: 16 cu ft
Core weight: 3184 lb

C/D
TEST RESULTS
Zero to 60 mph: 7.8 sec
Zero to 100 mph: 22.3 sec
Zero to 120 mph: 41.6 sec
Acceleration, 5–60 mph: 9.1 sec
Top gear, 30–50 mph: 4.3 sec
Top gear, 50–70 mph: 5.8 sec
Standing ¼-mile: 16.1 sec @ 87 mph
Top speed (governor limited, mfr’s claim): 130 mph
Braking, 70–0 mph: 167 ft
Road holding capacity, 300-foot slide slide: 0.88 g

C/D
FUEL ECONOMY
Observed: 25 mpg
75 mph highway driving: 34 mpg
Freeway range: 540 miles

EPA FUEL ECONOMY
Combined/city/highway: 32/29/36 mpg

More features and specifications

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