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#15

in Affordable Midsize Cars

MSRP: $22,465 - $30,480
Invoice: $21,679 - $28,804
MPG: 25 City / 36 Hwy
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Chevrolet Malibu Review

The 2015 Chevrolet Malibu ranks 15 out of 19 Affordable Midsize Cars. This ranking is based on our analysis of published reviews and test drives of the Chevrolet Malibu, as well as reliability and safety data.

Automotive journalists are impressed with the 2015 Chevrolet Malibu’s strong base engine and composed ride, but they note that it has a smaller rear seat and less engaging handling than many competitors.

Test drivers say the 2015 Chevy Malibu’s standard four-cylinder engine provides impressive acceleration, and the Malibu’s available turbocharged four-cylinder engine delivers ample power, allowing it to keep pace with six-cylinder rivals. Reviewers add that the Chevrolet Malibu’s standard six-speed automatic shifts seamlessly and its standard fuel-saving engine stop-start system is one of the smoothest on the market. The 2015 Chevrolet Malibu gets an EPA-estimated 25/36 mpg city/highway, which matches what many rivals get, although some, such as the Nissan Altima, use less fuel. Critics write that the Malibu has a very composed ride, but lacks the dynamic handling of many competitors. Automotive journalists also wish it had better steering feedback and a firmer brake pedal feel.

Reviewers write that the 2015 Chevrolet Malibu’s cabin is quieter and more elegantly designed than the interiors of many affordable midsize cars. They add that the Malibu’s interior materials are mostly upscale, although a few point out some hard plastic trim. Trunk space is above average in the Malibu, and test drivers like the Malibu’s comfortable front seats. However, they say its rear seats lack adequate legroom for adults. Standard features in the 2015 Malibu include Bluetooth phone connectivity, a six-speaker audio system and OnStar with 4G LTE and a built-in Wi-Fi hot spot. Available features include leather upholstery, heated front seats, a sunroof, navigation, a nine-speaker Pioneer audio system, satellite radio, a USB port, proximity key, push-button start, a rearview camera, rear parking sensors, forward collision alert, blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning and Chevy’s MyLink touch-screen infotainment system. Reviewers note that the MyLink system has a user-friendly interface and a lot of high-tech features, including smartphone integration with support for apps like Stitcher and Pandora.

  • "The Malibu gets the job done, but it tends to get lost in the shuffle versus its higher-profile rivals. That's a shame, because when you get right down to it, the Malibu is a pretty nice car with few apparent weaknesses." -- Edmunds
  • "Otherwise, with the exception of a few new colors, the 2015 Chevy Malibu is largely carryover, and that's fine with us. We like the quiet and comfortable ride, and the Malibu remains one of the better looking sedans in its class, inside and out." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The Malibu is Chevrolet's entry into the competitive midsize sedan segment. Although not as spacious or engaging to drive as some rivals, it does offer an appealing cabin design along with a user-friendly infotainment setup." -- Left Lane News
  • "All in, the 2014 model year enhancements make for a robust, much improved package. We might not pick it over many of its midsize classmates, but as an appliance, the Malibu pulls off the whole Camry formula better than Toyota itself can right now." -- Autoblog (2014)

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Other Cars to Consider

Auto writers appreciate the Ford Fusion’s spacious back seats, agile handling and lively turbocharged engine options. Unlike the Malibu, the Fusion is available with all-wheel drive, which could be a boon for shoppers in harsh winter climates.

Test drivers say the Nissan Altima has an attractive interior and top-notch materials. They add that its sporty handling makes it more fun to drive than most affordable midsize cars. The Altima also has one of the highest fuel economy estimates in the class.

Compare the Malibu, Fusion and Altima »

Details: 2015 Chevrolet Malibu

The 2015 Chevrolet Malibu is a five-seat sedan that’s available in six trims: LS, 1LT, 2LT, 3LT, 1LTZ and 2LTZ. It comes standard with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, a six-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive. A turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine is optional. The Chevrolet Malibu’s last full redesign was in 2013, and since it sees no major changes for 2015, this overview uses applicable research and reviews from the 2013 through 2015 model years.

See 2015 Chevrolet Malibu specs »

Review Last Updated: 8/22/14

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