To say Chevrolet's previous attempts at doing a hybrid model of the Malibu have been lackluster, is an understatement. The past two attempts really didn't see a big increase in fuel economy and were not big sellers. Well Chevrolet hopes to change that as they have previewed the next Malibu Hybrid which the brand says will have better than 45 MPG combined.
The next-generation Malibu Hybrid features an all-new, direct-injected 1.8L four-cylinder paired with a slightly modified two-motor drive unit from the Volt to produce a total output of 182 horsepower. An 80-cell 1.5 kWh battery pack provides the juice for the motors and plays a role in getting the Malibu Hybrid up to 55 MPH on electric power alone.
The Malibu Hybrid will also boast Exhaust Gas Heat Recovery (EGHR) technology. EGHR uses the heat from the exhaust gas to warm up the engine and interior.
“The 2016 Malibu Hybrid will offer impressive fuel economy, exceptional driving characteristics and gorgeous styling. Besides leveraging innovation from the Chevrolet Volt, the Malibu Hybrid also has unique features that help improve aerodynamics, like upper and lower grille air shutters to improve airflow and a reduced ride height, all of which help reduce fuel consumption,” said Jesse Ortega, chief engineer for the Chevrolet Malibu.
Chevrolet says the new Malibu Hybrid will go on sale next spring.
Press Release is on Page 2
Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid Derives Technology from Volt
- GM estimates combined fuel economy ratings to exceed 45 mpg
DETROIT – Chevrolet’s recent production announcement of its all-electric vehicle based on the Bolt EV concept, as well as the introduction of the 2016 Chevrolet Volt, will be joined by a strong hybrid version of the next-generation Malibu.
Using technology from the 2016 Chevrolet Volt propulsion system, Malibu Hybrid will offer an estimated combined fuel economy rating exceeding 45 mpg, higher than the combined mileage ratings of the Ford Fusion, Toyota Camry and Hyundai Sonata hybrid variants.
“The 2016 Malibu Hybrid will offer impressive fuel economy, exceptional driving characteristics and gorgeous styling,” said Jesse Ortega, Chevrolet Malibu chief engineer.
“Besides leveraging innovation from the Chevrolet Volt, the Malibu Hybrid also has unique features that help improve aerodynamics, like upper and lower grille air shutters to improve airflow and a reduced ride height, all of which help reduce fuel consumption,” Ortega said.
An all-new direct-injection 1.8L 4-cylinder engine mated to a two-motor drive unit slightly modified from the 2016 Chevrolet Volt drive unit powers the Malibu Hybrid. The drive unit provides additional power to assist the engine during acceleration, for 182 horsepower (136 kW) of total system power.
The engine also features Chevrolet’s first application of Exhaust Gas Heat Recovery, or EGHR, technology, which uses exhaust heat to warm the engine and cabin. EGHR improves engine warm up and assures consistent fuel economy performance in cold weather. Additional fuel economy benefits come from Exhaust Gas Recirculation, or EGR.
An 80-cell, 1.5 kWh lithium-ion battery pack provides electric power to the Hybrid system. The advanced lithium-ion based chemistry can power the Malibu hybrid at up to 55 miles per hour on electricity alone. The gasoline-powered engine will automatically come on at higher speeds and high loads when necessary to provide additional power.
Malibu Hybrid also shares power electronics from the 2016 Volt and a blended regenerative braking system, which provides maximum kinetic energy recovery during braking to be stored into the battery system to help maintain charge.
The Malibu Hybrid will be manufactured in Kansas City, Kansas, at the Fairfax Assembly plant from globally sourced parts. It is due in Chevrolet dealer showrooms in spring 2016.