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NINETY EIGHT REGENCY

MW 1997: Chevy Malibu Road Test

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I remember hearing people confusing this car with the Camry at first glance when I was a kid.

Aside from the more Buick-like taillamps of the Camry, the nose and profile of the two cars somehow come off as being similar, even though there isn't many similar cues on either design.

8090-1997-Toyota-Camry.jpg

2003-chevrolet-malibu-pic-1050.jpeg

I can also somehow see a little bit of the early '90s Accord and mid '90s Corolla in the Malibu's design too.

Edited by whiteknight
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I prefer the look of that Camry. I have a special hatred for these Malibus. Worst car I ever drove. My driver's ed school used them. I remember how overly sensitive and difficult to modulate the throttle was and how mushy the brake pedal was. I remember every panel you touched would creak. Perhaps most annoyingly, the ones they had had fake "stitching" on the steering wheel...it was molded plastic that dug into your hands and was extremely uncomfortable.

Neighbor had one until last year...ran like $h!. She traded it in for a last gen Corolla S...IMO that was an upgrade.

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I have a special hatred for these Malibus. Worst car I ever drove. My driver's ed school used them. I remember how overly sensitive and difficult to modulate the throttle was and how mushy the brake pedal was. I remember every panel you touched would creak. Perhaps most annoyingly, the ones they had had fake "stitching" on the steering wheel...it was molded plastic that dug into your hands and was extremely uncomfortable.

And here I thought I was one of a very small group of people to suffer through Driver's Ed class with a '97+ Chevrolet Malibu.

What I recall the most about that car, aside from the touchy throttle you mentioned, is how ... disgusting the plastic used on the interior panels felt; the door panels, the dashboard, the steering wheel. Trust me, the rubber wheel without the fake stitching wasn't any better. The steering in our D-Ed car also was so horribly numb and vague, like the power steering pump was a quart low on fluid.

I should mention that car had a grand total of 34,000 miles on its odometer and was religiously cleaned and maintained. It was a 1998 model.

They finally got rid of it at the start of my senior year with a current-gen Chevrolet Impala.

Edited by whiteknight
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