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    William Maley

    Review: 2016 Chevrolet Malibu 2LT

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      The little things spoil an impressive midsize sedan

    We’ll admit we were not big fans of the last-generation Chevrolet Malibu. When we drove the Malibu Eco, it failed to deliver the fuel economy numbers that Chevrolet touted. Plus, it was the only Malibu you could get for a time. The decision was made to get the Eco out first while work was being finished up on the two four-cylinder models. Unfortunately, this move would prove to be a mistake. Then we spent some time in the Malibu 2.0T. While we like the performance on offer, it had a difficult time justifying the high price tag. Both models also suffered from having one of the smallest back seats in the class. The various issues caused sales of the Malibu to drop precipitously and made General Motors fast track a new Malibu.

     

    This brings us to the new Chevrolet Malibu which made its debut last year at the New York Auto Show. It seemed GM had learned from its mistakes from the previous model and put that experience into this new model. Let’s find if this makes the Malibu a better vehicle.

     

    The last-generation Malibu wasn’t a bad looking vehicle. But compared to the model it replaced, the Malibu’s design just fell flat. The 2016 model is a completely different story. Designers went back to the 2008 to 2012 Malibu and started improving on that design. The end result is one of the sharpest looking midsize sedans in the class. Up front is where you can see the influence from the 2008 to 2012 Malibu with a similar grille layout and headlight location. The grilles are slightly narrower and wider. The side profile reveals an A7-inspired rear roof pillar that blends in beautifully with the fender. The back features a rounded trunk lid and chrome exhaust tips.

     

    The same cannot be said for the interior. It isn’t to say Chevrolet hasn’t made some strides here. The design is just as sharp as the exterior with flowing curves and a touchscreen that looks like a tablet that has been docked. In the back, there an increase in overall space. Sitting back here, I had plenty of head and legroom. Getting yourself comfortable in the driver’s seat is easy thanks to an eight-way power seat and a tilt-telescoping steering wheel.

     


    2016 Chevrolet Malibu 2LT 10


    But Chevrolet made a huge mistake in the material choices. The 2LT is just below the Premier and you would expect a fair amount of soft-touch materials on the dash and door panels, possibly some leather on the seats. Unfortunately, you don’t get any of that. There is an abundance of hard plastics throughout the interior. Depending on the location, the quality can range from ok to terrible. Not helping matters is the use of cloth fabric on the dashboard much like the last-generation Cruze. If this was the base L or LS, this would be ok considering the price of those models. But this being the 2LT, which starts at $28,620, it is a huge disappointment. Especially when you consider many of the Malibu’s competitors for around the same price feature better materials.

     

    Depending on which Malibu trim you pick, it will either come with no touchscreen (L), a seven-inch touchscreen (LS and 1LT), or an eight-inch touchscreen (2LT and Premier). Our tester featured the eight-inch and the latest version of Chevrolet’s MyLink infotainment system. MyLink still stumbles in some areas such as overall performance and recognizing devices plugged into the USB inputs, but overall the system is much better than when it was first launched. For 2016, Chevrolet has added Apple CarPlay (and Android Auto) integration to MyLink. You just need to plug a compatible iPhone into the USB and hit the CarPlay button on the touchscreen. You’ll be greeted with a screen that is very similar to the home screen on your iPhone. Applications such as Siri, Apple Maps, Spotify, and Pandora can be used through the system. Like the Volt I drove recently, I ran into some problems with CarPlay. From applications not responding to the vehicle not recognizing that my phone was plugged in. As is stands, CarPlay is a huge improvement over most infotainment systems used in vehicles. But some bugs need to be worked out still.

     


    2016 Chevrolet Malibu 2LT 8


     

    Power for the Malibu comes from two turbo engines - a 1.5L or 2.0L. Our 2LT came with the 2.0L turbo producing 250 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. This is paired with a new eight-speed automatic transmission. The best words I can use to describe the Malibu’s 2.0L is punchy and effortless. The turbo spools up quickly and provides a strong pull of power when leaving a stop. More impressive is how fast the engine is able to climb in speed when merging onto an expressway or making a pass. The eight-speed is one of GM’s best transmissions with smooth and smart shifts through the gears. In terms of fuel economy, the turbo 2.0L is rated at 22 City/33 Highway/26 Combined. We got an average of 27 MPG during our week of testing.

     

    Chevrolet struck a nice balance with the Malibu’s ride and handling. Like the previous-generation model, the 2016 Malibu features one of the smoothest rides in the class. Bumps and other imperfections are ironed out before getting inside the cabin. Wind noise is kept to a minimum, but we found there was a bit more road noise than the last Malibu we drove. We’re wondering if Chevrolet removed a fair amount of sound deadening to help make the new Malibu lighter. Around corners, the Malibu’s suspension keeps body motions in check. Steering has a direct feel, but a little bit more weight wouldn’t be a bad thing. No, it will not challenge a Mazda6 for the best driving midsize sedan. But having a nice balance between the two isn’t too bad.

     

    Pricing for the Chevrolet Malibu starts at $22,500 for the base L and climbs to $31,795 for the Premier. The 2LT starts at $28,620 and our tester came with an as-tested price of $29,495. But I’m not sure if the 2LT is a good value. Part of it comes from the interior appointments that are used in the 2LT trim. But the other part comes from the lack of options. Yes, the 2LT comes well equipped with 18-inch wheels, power seat for the driver, eight-inch touchscreen, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and front collision warning with automatic braking. But you cannot option such features as dual-zone climate control, leather, navigation, or a premium audio system. To get those, you need to drop down to the 1LT with the turbo 1.5L or go up to Premier if you want to keep the turbo 2.0L. However, the Premier doesn’t get most of the safety features as the 2LT. You’ll need to opt for a safety package to get these features. I can’t help but wonder if Chevrolet would be better off dropping the 2LT and figuring out a way to fill in the gap between the 1LT and Premier.

     


    2016 Chevrolet Malibu 2LT 6


    Chevrolet has done a lot to make the new Malibu a real threat in the midsize class. With sharp exterior styling, a punchy 2.0L turbo engine, the right balance of comfort and sport, and a larger interior space, Chevrolet seems to have righted most of the wrongs of the previous model. But it is the little things that trip up the Malibu. From the questionable interior materials to the overall value proposition, General Motors made some crucial missteps.

     

    I have a theory about General Motors that sadly seems to get proven time and time again. They can build one of the best vehicles in the class, but there is one thing that spoils it. It could be the quality of the materials, interior space, powertrain, or something else. The 2016 Malibu 2LT is the latest one to prove it, which is a huge shame.

     

     

    Disclaimer: Chevrolet Provided the Malibu, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas

     

    Year: 2016
    Make: Chevrolet
    Model: Malibu
    Trim: 2LT
    Engine: 2.0L Turbocharged DOHC Four-Cylinder
    Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, Front-Wheel Drive
    Horsepower @ RPM: 250 @ 5,300
    Torque @ RPM: 258 @ 1,700
    Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 22/33/26
    Curb Weight: 3,126 lbs
    Location of Manufacture: Kansas City, Kansas
    Base Price: $28,620
    As Tested Price: $29,495 (Includes $875.00 Destination Charge)

     

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    Nice review....and we are thinking along the same lines here. Inside just doesn't do it for me. It really does scream cheap, this after me driving a brand new accord for a few grand less!

     

    This, and they lost much of the bang for buck they offer as well....other makers are offering more for less.....

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    The Malibu on the Premier trim with the brown interior is a lot more inviting, but I wouldn't say it's the best interior at that price, but the tech is first class.

     

    However...I still believe that American cars while needing to be price competitive...they usually are near the top nowadays.

     

    So

     

    In order to get a competitive midsize sedan from Chevy that is at or near the top in many areas, the Malibu had to lose some of the value proposition. That's totally in line with what we should expect.

    • Upvote 1

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    I sat in a Premium 2.0T at the auto show.

    My high school buddy who lives close to me and is  the only dude I have contact with from my high school years  recently just bought a Premium 2.0T.

     

    (his wife went from a Chevy SSR to a Honda HR-V and he went from a Genesis Coupe 2.0T to the Malibu this year)

     

    And each time I have sat in the Malibu Premium, I come to the same conclusion...that the PREMIUM Malibu has an interior at the VERY LEAST that is ON PAR with anything else in that price range.

    I personally think that a Malibu Premium has a nicer  interior than a 2013-2016 Fusion Titanium...and I already think that a 2013-2016 Fusion Titanium interior is pretty impressive at that price point.

     

    OK...Ive also been in a 2013 Honda Accord....and in 2013, it was lacking in refinement....

    Oh yes....a 2013 Accord Touring V6 was not exactly all that...cheap hard plastics galore...and if some of us at ChearsandGears even diss a 2013 Acura TL for cheapness...then I dont see how some of us are enamored with an Accord as the TL might have hard plastics...the tolerances are very tight and screwed together quite well.

    The only thing that a 2013 Accord Touring has over a base 2013 Acura TL is that the price differential for the price of admittance for an "Acura" is not worth it. Step into a SH-AWD though...and the mechanicals tell a much different story. 

     

    So to bring this back to the Malibu's interior, and the Fusion's to some extent,

    Both dashs of an Accord, TL AND TLX are also CLUNKY...huge and outdated...

    The Fusion is elegantly done and the Malibu just a tad less elegant, but certainly flows better than the Honda Motor Company's efforts...

     

    Keep in mind that I actually own a 2012 Acura TL SH-AWD and a 2013 Ford Fusion 1.6 ecoboost SE.

    Keep in mind that I LOVE my TL, but it doesnt mean that I dont feel claustrophobic at times when I look to my right and see that overwhelming huge and clunky center screen with a plethora of buttons...

    lead11-2012-acura-tl-fd.jpg

     

    The new generation still has that dated, clunky feel to it...

    2016-Acura-TLX-interior.jpg

     

    The Accord looks like its a generation older from the TLX....because it is....like the TL....huge, clunky....plethora of buttons....

    Do the LCD screens fool us? Not me...

    2017-Honda-Accord-Interior.jpg

     

    So....I think Chevrolet did a fantastic job with their 2017 Malibu....especially in Premium trim....

    Not as clunky, and definitely flows better...with a more premium FEEL to it than even the TLX...keep in mind though that Acura has tighter tolerances and is screwed together better...

    248723.jpg

     

    And the 2017  Fusion for reference for what I believe is the most simplest and most elegant...

    %20%D9%81%D9%8A%D9%88%D8%AC%D9%86%202016

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    Olds, the top trim is "Premier." Besides that, preach!

    Premier....Premium...

    Close enough. 

    Old age is slowly creeping up on me and little mistakes like these will only increase with time.

     

    I noticed I made another snafu....my buddy's wife went from a Chevy HHR to a Honda HR-V.....

    I wrote that she had a SSR...

    No. Not a SSR.

    A HHR.

     

    Yeah, CP....Ill continue to preach!

     

    It doesnt seem fair to me that FINALLY GM gets it right with their interiors since the 1980s with their mid-sized family car offerings, that we have to bitch complain about nothing....especially since not only did GM get it right, they are actually LEADERS (with Ford) in this segment concerning their interior refinement and quality.

     

    The Nissan Altima is chintzy, clunky and outdated.

    So is the Toyota Camry's. Maybe not clunky, but definitely chintzy and especially outdated.

     

    The Hyundai/KIA Sonata/Optima...are nicer than the Altima's and Camry's...more modern and sportier, but compared to the Chevy Malibu Premier, definitely not better quality....

     

    And Im basing my opinions on all vehicle cabins being the top level trims as the base level trims on most cars are the same across the board...same amounts of hard plastics and same quality.

     

    The top level trims of Chevy and Ford rival entry level premium luxury cars...such as Buick and Acura and Lincoln.

    Honda Accord comes close, but not everybody else.

     

    When was the last time Chevy and Ford being on top like that?

     

    And if you dont think so...maybe you should pay a second visit to the Accord, Altima, Sonata and leave the rose coloured glasses at home...

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    What I gleamed from the Fusion v. Malibu interior fight is this. The Fusion has more consistent materials in terms of graining, and has bigger patches of squishy stuff.

     

    The Malibu has smaller patches of the squishy stuff...but the squishy stuff is strategically placed and of a deeper squishyness. And the brown interior is a nice change...too many top trim interiors are now either parchment leather that will show age easily or teutonic black which just seems trying too hard to be cold and calculating instead of warm and inviting.

     

    And then the Fusion Platinum whacks every car that is supposed to have a luxury interior, but doesn't have leather on the dash or the doors.

     

    Sync 3 is now a match for Mylink...the 4G LTE is nice stuff, but the Fusion screen while capacitive now too is still matte. That was a good choice.

     

    Aside from that...the Fusion can have incentives to level the playing field for it's value. I like the front end of the Fusion more, but I like the rear end of the Malibu more. The side profiles are equal to me. They both use the same transmissions except the Chevy premier model, and similar enough engines, both have great hybrids.

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    Fusion inside looks better, hands down. 

     

     

    But if the Malibu really wants to play with the big boys, then it still needs to dangle a carrot to steal from the "import" boys. That's where the 1LT needs to offer that bang for buck. They need to get those butts in seats, so the praise it does get from folks gets spread around.....and more folks into the showrooms as customers....

     

    Don't give it away, just make sure it is lower......

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    I dont think Chevy needs to do anything other than just to stay on their present course toeing the line.

    Why?

     

    1. 1st generation Ford Fusion was a good first step in the right direction. 2nd generation Fusion and Ford just about got everything they needed to do right, got it right and now the Fusion is a force to be reckoned with. The refresh is just icing on the cake.

     

    2. When GM did the Pontiac G6 and the Saturn Aura in 2005 and 2006, they did many things right so when the Malibu came in 2008, they created a 'Ford Fusion' situation in 2008 in where GM created a force to be reckoned with...

    However, for the next generation and refresh, they dropped the ball big time...

    Well, this 2017 Malibu rights the ship back unto the course where the 2008 model left off. However, CUVs  are what sell in 2017, so maybe huge sales numbers should not  be expected of this 2017 Malibu. But, be excited what Chevy will offer as the next Equinox knowing how  Chevy means business  with how they are producing their current line-ups...

    Edited by oldshurst442

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    this is craziness. we picked up our new 16 1LT malibu today!  Insane that the neighbor 2 doors down picked up a new Fusion!  Coworker got a new Malibu a couple days ago too!

     

    Got a member rides gallery and topic going on, anyways.....here is my take on the deal 

     

    The Impala is still the solid posh v6 cornfield states cruiser.  It's your large and comfortable classic GM car.  It does that well.

     

    This new Malibu is entirely different than the old Malibu.  It's leaps ahead.  But it still doesn't intrude on what the Impala is.  

     

    The main thing is that the car was designed to be much more useful for space and then it's completely engineered for fuel efficiency.  So it has a light chassis.   A lot of that lightness comes into the cabin.  Materials and finishes are not thick and posh like they would be in an Impala.

     

    The Malibu dead on nails the mid size class now though, and to me it's like i am getting a large and spacious economy car.  It's got a small turbo and basic interior.  It just has more room than a Cruze.  It's a 'move up econocar'.

     

    Believe me,I've test driven a $h!hton of the cars in the midsize class.  All of them have their cheapness about them.  The Malibu is among one of it not the quietest.  The Mazda and Honda are tin cans in comparison. Passat is cheap and dated.  Fusion feels like a tank now.  Camry's and Altimas are terrible.  

     

    It's crazy but to me this new Malibu is like my 99 SHO Taurus.  It sort of has that same feel inside the cabin with the big pod sticking out of the dash, and the seating positions etc. and the general Aura.  SHO had more go juice and was much heavier.  I think Chevy needs to double the 1.5t and put a 3.0 liter tt v8 under this hood...LOL

     

    The midsize car class has become the new class of econocars.  Much cheaper than crossovers and get great mpg.  All the leaders in this class practically lease or fleet a bunch of them.  People that get these cars want something cheap and kind of nice to get them by a few years.  Something like an Impala is more like something you would keep a long time.  Midsize car class has become full with disposable cars, they are good cars, it is just more of a commentary on society today and the reality of the market.  Whoever makes the best consumer product wins and the interior only needs to just be 'nice enough'.

     

    And now as of today being an owner..ok, leaser, i gotta tell you I like the interior a lot.

     

    Can't wait to see the Regal based on this platform.

    Edited by regfootball

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    I sat in a Premium 2.0T at the auto show.

    My high school buddy who lives close to me and is  the only dude I have contact with from my high school years  recently just bought a Premium 2.0T.

     

    (his wife went from a Chevy SSR to a Honda HR-V and he went from a Genesis Coupe 2.0T to the Malibu this year)

     

    And each time I have sat in the Malibu Premium, I come to the same conclusion...that the PREMIUM Malibu has an interior at the VERY LEAST that is ON PAR with anything else in that price range.

    I personally think that a Malibu Premium has a nicer  interior than a 2013-2016 Fusion Titanium...and I already think that a 2013-2016 Fusion Titanium interior is pretty impressive at that price point.

     

    OK...Ive also been in a 2013 Honda Accord....and in 2013, it was lacking in refinement....

    Oh yes....a 2013 Accord Touring V6 was not exactly all that...cheap hard plastics galore...and if some of us at ChearsandGears even diss a 2013 Acura TL for cheapness...then I dont see how some of us are enamored with an Accord as the TL might have hard plastics...the tolerances are very tight and screwed together quite well.

    The only thing that a 2013 Accord Touring has over a base 2013 Acura TL is that the price differential for the price of admittance for an "Acura" is not worth it. Step into a SH-AWD though...and the mechanicals tell a much different story. 

     

    So to bring this back to the Malibu's interior, and the Fusion's to some extent,

    Both dashs of an Accord, TL AND TLX are also CLUNKY...huge and outdated...

    The Fusion is elegantly done and the Malibu just a tad less elegant, but certainly flows better than the Honda Motor Company's efforts...

     

    Keep in mind that I actually own a 2012 Acura TL SH-AWD and a 2013 Ford Fusion 1.6 ecoboost SE.

    Keep in mind that I LOVE my TL, but it doesnt mean that I dont feel claustrophobic at times when I look to my right and see that overwhelming huge and clunky center screen with a plethora of buttons...

    lead11-2012-acura-tl-fd.jpg

     

    The new generation still has that dated, clunky feel to it...

    2016-Acura-TLX-interior.jpg

     

    The Accord looks like its a generation older from the TLX....because it is....like the TL....huge, clunky....plethora of buttons....

    Do the LCD screens fool us? Not me...

    2017-Honda-Accord-Interior.jpg

     

    So....I think Chevrolet did a fantastic job with their 2017 Malibu....especially in Premium trim....

    Not as clunky, and definitely flows better...with a more premium FEEL to it than even the TLX...keep in mind though that Acura has tighter tolerances and is screwed together better...

    248723.jpg

     

    And the 2017  Fusion for reference for what I believe is the most simplest and most elegant...

    %20%D9%81%D9%8A%D9%88%D8%AC%D9%86%202016

     

     

    I love that fact that MY MALIBU doesn't have a dash that is completely dominated by a huge center stack with endless buttons.  We gots a few climate buttons, and the touchscreen and it doesn't take over the whole car.

     

    brilliant!

     

     

    ^^^^^ you made lots of great points.

    Edited by regfootball

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    The new Malibu's interior is fine. Abs the rest of the package easily makes up for any shortcoming.

    I'd be curious to hear what midsize sedan you think has the best interior.

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    My take on that question is that the Mazda6 and Fusion are probably the nicest inside when optioned up. The Ford has the best for plastics I think. The Mazda has sort of a BMW feel with the right color and trim choice.

    Really love the interior on my new Malibu. So much that I left it in the garage the last couple days. Don't want to put too many miles on it....want it to stay nice.

    Saturday we loaded it with 4 people and that to us is a lot of extra mass to haul around. Still in near 90 heat with a/c I pulled two separate 40+ mpg runs of over 20 miles at I would say at least 60+ mph average. Stop and go of course kills the mpg like all small turbos. But this will pull 40+ mpg highway if you keep the rpm s under 2000-2500 at all times. It's cruises silently like a little baby sleeps. Concrete vs asphalt some tire noise creeps in but it's minimal. Far quieter than Hondas. With a lightweight single person on board and mild climate this car should deliver big quiet mpg Ina comfortable way.

    All the points I touch in the car are soft. Plastics look ok to me when I consider what my lease payment is. Kids love the spacious back with tons of room (gm finally gets it) and the USB ports and cup holders in armrest. My son enjoyed using the iPad with the built in 4g hotspot. The storage below the center armrest will hold the iPad mini. Wife thinks CarPlay is cool. Send and receive texts while driving. Maps via phone a big hit. Some CarPlay bugs but those will get figured out. Plenty of room for four. No complainers. Could drive all day.

    Car is nice enough for its class and Impala gives you whatever else you are missing. When you examine every component closely on the Malibu you see how they pared away all the excess weight and thickness. It actually is a bit unnerving to look at pieces of the car and how seemingly insubstantial they look compared to what you are used to seeing in a GM car.

    Carpet feels thinner. Brackets plates suspension pieces are thinner, not as wide and have more holes in them. Trunk lid feels the weight of tin foil compared to older gm cars.

    If that worries you then just get an Impala. Problem solved.

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    I read one review somewhere that said the new Malibu was quieter inside and had nicer ride and steering than a new Maxima. I have to say I could believe that as quite possible.

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    The brown interior is the best, reminds me of Buick.

     

    I also like the Brown seat leather option on the Fusion.

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    The brown interior is the best, reminds me of Buick.

     

    I also like the Brown seat leather option on the Fusion.

    You like the brown material....because you are a brown man, my friend.

    :smilewide:

     

    Edited by oldshurst442

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    hue hue hue....

     

     

    RUSSEELLL!!!!

     

    LAHALA!!!

     

    To many car companies now make drab black on black interiors.

     

    I like car interiors that HAVE shiny burl wood trim - because that's what used to be luxo. You know, every car wood have wood, and a tasteful varnish, and it used to be all the rage man.

     

    And brown colour leather is like better man. It is like better. It is better than better. It is the best....or er black leather...

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    hue hue hue....

     

     

    RUSSEELLL!!!!

     

    LAHALA!!!

     

    To many car companies now make drab black on black interiors.

     

    I like car interiors that HAVE shiny burl wood trim - because that's what used to be luxo. You know, every car wood have wood, and a tasteful varnish, and it used to be all the rage man.

     

    And brown colour leather is like better man. It is like better. It is better than better. It is the best....or er black leather...

    LOL, was having this exact debate with my senior parents who are looking at trading in their 2004 SRX for a new XT5. They said classics never die, give me black on black. I showed them the warm brown option. Dad is like nope do not like change, my mom on the other hand was, love that reminds me of a latte. Warm and yummy.  :blink:  Only a mother could say something like that about an interior. We'll the battle has begun, mom wants a two tone warm and yummy interior, dad wants classic.

     

    Wonder who will win!  :deathwatch:

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    Mr. DFELT...

    Im guessing your parents are married for a looooong time.

    Your dad has learned the single most important set of words in a marriage...

     

     

    Yes dear.

     

    Im putting my money on your mom winning this....

    No contest, therefore no popcorn is needed...

     

     

    (Im not there yet, Im still learning...popcorn is needed in my household. The battles dont go my way though. Im still trying to win the war but Im guessing Ill wave the white flag and surrender when Im old and gray...)

    Edited by oldshurst442

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    Mr. DFELT...

    Im guessing your parents are married for a looooong time.

    Your dad has learned the single most important set of words in a marriage...

     

     

    Yes dear.

     

    Im putting my money on your mom winning this....

    No contest, therefore no popcorn is needed...

     

     

    (Im not there yet, Im still learning...popcorn is needed in my household. The battles dont go my way though. Im still trying to win the war but Im guessing Ill wave the white flag and surrender when Im old and gray...)

    Normally I would say you are right and mom would win, but after 56 years of marriage, lately I noticed my dad has started to change and once he is set in his mind will not even want to debate it. Both have become rather stubborn in their old age.

     

    Soooooooo, I have to say I will wait and see. :P

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    I've seen SO many new Malibu's around Philadelphia, and not all rentals (you can tell based on stickers), the 1LT 1.5T seems to be the top combo.

     

    Had a chance to ride in a house guest's rented white LS model back in May. That car, straight from the factory, comfortable cloth seats, CarPlay and all, was very impressive. My guests were from Germany and even they enjoyed it, and the kids loved CarPlay and had it mastered. Smooth, solid, tight, great visibility out, felt roomy and that odd combo of feeling SOLID yet very lightweight and efficient at the same time.

     

    Kind of puts in perspective, for a car like this, even in LS trim, for mid $20k's and under...why you would even bother with some of the less than impressive compact sedans out there that cost just as much and aren't nearly as well designed or refined.

     

    It's not as posh as some, nor is the visual as impressive as a Mazda, or even the Ford, but it strikes a good balance. Much nicer than previous versions, and different than the Impala enough to make sense.

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    ^^^^^^^^

     

    do i buy a Cruze or a Malibu........mid size sedans are becoming the new class of economy cars.  Price difference is minimal, mpg difference is now minimal too.  The extra room and space makes all the difference in the world in terms of usability.  That's for us why we did the Malibu instead of the Cruze.

     

    The Malibu feels light (you can definitely see and feel the lightness of the parts and the vehicle).  At the same time they pared it to the bone on weight and it doesn't feel like it will crumple from normal use.  I would say from driving it for 3 weeks now that they've probably done all they can on weight loss for a car this size now.  So it makes perfect sense to start adding room back into the vehicles again.

     

    You see all the room in the back of the new one, and compare it to the 2013-2015 and you see the consumer response and you really wonder wtf the GM is thinking when it makes botches like that.  Look at the ATS and its useless back seat.  Seriously GM wtf get a clue.

     

    Malibu - i can't wait to take the first long trip in it.  On the right pavement surface the car is tomb quiet with no tire noise and the engine purrs like a content little kitty and sips fuel.

    Edited by regfootball

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    You see all the room in the back of the new one, and compare it to the 2013-2015 and you see the consumer response and you really wonder wtf the GM is thinking when it makes botches like that.  Look at the ATS and its useless back seat.  Seriously GM wtf get a clue.

     

    The ATS is RWD entry premium and it's target market is singles and DINKs...so the rear seat space is less important than it would be with a family sedan like the Malibu...the ATS's competition all are pretty tight in the back...

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    but still the back seat is deficient even for that group of buyers and overall for the brand.  Go to many other forum sites.  Lots of folks who are interested in the ATS ultimately say they gave it up for consideration and bought other brands.  No point to building a car line that won't sell then.  It's also far less commodious than the competition in its group.

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