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2000-2011 Chevrolet Malibu



  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    3.1L is still the Malibu engine until the 2004 models come when it goes to a new 3.5L.

    check out

  • Hey people guess what, some of my lights that light up the buttons on my radio are gone out. I called the dealer, and they told me that it would cost about $100 just to look at it, and more the replace it. The call it a repair!!! All I want is the bulbs replaced. Is that B/S or what? Has this happened to anyone else.

    I have no more warrenty, I have a 98 w/ 116500 miles
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    chevymalibu19: Since you are out of the warranty, why not take it to an independent garage? it will definitely be cheaper. Also check your fuses first to make sure it's not a blown fuse that is the problem.

    credman: I see you did not read your owner's manual. The red light comes on when there is approximately 2 - 3 gallons left in the tank. Then it blinks again when there is one gallon left in the tank. The fuel tank capacity is 14.2 gallons. I pusehed it one time and actually put 14.1 gallons of gas into the tank. I wanted to see approximatley how far I could go once the light goes on. (Good thing to know in case you're driving in an area where you are not familar). My Malibu can go about 60 miles.
  • May this new year be better than the last for all of you and, especially, for the precious automotive masterpieces - your beloved Malibus!
  • norbsnorbs Posts: 10
    Just put a K & N air filter in my 99 2.4L and because the airbox is not changed the computer will remap itself the small amount needed for optimum timing,fuel/air mixture. Like night and day. Have enjoyed the power of the 2.4 since new and with the small extra boost this product gives it is even more fun than ever to eat up cars with small 6's. A great 4 and I am sorry Chevy stopped putting it in the bu. Also, one of the reasons for the water pump on the 2.4L being driven by the timing chain is in case of serpentine belt failure the car can still be driven without over heating until you can find a garage to replace the belt. It will be total loss off the battery but by pushing the emergency brake one click on the DRL's turn off and save battery. Just a little useless information for us diehard 4 cylinder owners. Happy New Year to all on this great site.
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    The fuel pump of Malibu (and many other GM cars) is cooled by fuel itself. Driving to the last drop of gas strains the pump, and a couple of months later it may fail. Repair is expensive.
  • joe3891joe3891 Posts: 759
    will cause a pump to fail is a myth,the fuel return line dumps into the pump sump to keep the pump cool.
    Only when you run completely out of fuel will it not be cooled,but not for long.
  • I bought a 2001Malibu almost two years ago and checked into this discussion to see what others thought about the car. Most of the comments were numerous "experts" ragging about the Firestone Affinity tires. I just bought a 2003 Malibu and I'm checking in to see what others are saying, and numerous "experts" are ragging on the Affinity tires. Will it ever stop? To those of you thinking about a Malibu, I've driven 20,000 miles on Firestone Affinity tires in Michigan weather, and they are just fine. Enjoy your new car. The Malibu is a great value!
  • tamu2002tamu2002 Posts: 758
    Hi all, hope everyone had a great CHRISTmas. We just came back from a 1670 miles round trip and I wanted to let y'al know how our 2002 Malibu LS (now has 6900 miles) performed.

    We covered a variety of terrains from plains to mountains (West Virginia, I-77) and a lot of different weather conditions as well (heavy snow, pouring rain, etc.) Overall the Malibu did very well. We're extremely happy with it and glad we bought it! We had four adults and a toddler and a trunk filled to the brim with our stuff, and the power was adequate for the most part. With 31 psi front and 28 psi rear tire pressures, we got about 31 mpg with exclusive highway cruising at close to 80 mph. The handleing was secure and reassuring in the heavy rain and snow we encoutered. On the mountains it was an excersize trying to keep the transmission in the top gear while accelerating uphill or maintain a high speed (I wanted to keep the RPM low to save fuel). That's when I wished it had more power. Going downhill the engine keeps the speed nicely in check, and somehow it knows that you're going downhill and doesn't kick into neutral.

    Throughout our trip, the Malibu was quiet at high speeds and the ride was very smooth and comfortable. The trunk swallowed all of our stuff without any problem. Man, for its practicality and quality, I can't believe we paid only 16 grands for it. The affinity tires did their job very well as far as I know. I'm not sure how much more one can ask of them. I just hope they last long too.

    Now with 6900 miles, our Malibu has been trouble free. You just put gas in it and off you go. I follow the Edmunds' letters to the editor and there's quite a few angry letters about edmunds' "most wanted" picks for the lack of domestic cars. Here I just wanna throw out an interesting perspective regarding this topic: the imports ARE probably more refined cars and for the prices they are asking they absolute oughtta be. My thought is (let's take mid-size for example)if every auto maker makes cars the same calibor as the Accord and Camry, aren't they all gonna charge for the same prices? Then who would be left to make cars like the Malibu that offers this kind of size, power, equipment, and all and only costs $16000. What are folks like us with a small budget gonna do? That's why I think the most important issure here is reliability and not who is better! I'm getting more and more sick and tired of auto journalists' pretention and over emphasis on performance and 0-60 numbers. I think for the most part these things are totally irrelevant to regular car buyers. Kudos to GM and other domestic auto makers for making reliable cars affordable.
  • Tamu, I too, have had very few problems with my Bu, and it has more than 38K now. Unfortunately, not everyone is so fortunate, especially with brakes, though the last couple of years Bu has been mostly bug-free. At the same time, it appears Bu is GM's highest quality vehicle, as it competes in the most coveted segment of the market - family sedan - and the competition is severe. See, they CAN do quality vehicles when they want to or have to
  • vcjumpervcjumper Posts: 1,110
    I'll post the link I posted in the Vectra topic since those pics are not allowed/won't be here long

    04 Malibu

  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    "those pics are not allowed/won't be here long"


    Folks, you cannot use the img src tags to display copyrighted pictures unless you or owns the copyright.

    Links are fine. Displaying is not. Unfortunately, I did have to remove some messages.

    Email me if there are any questions, thanks.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    All I can say is the new Malibu looks like a winner if the quality and value are there. Great improvement on the interior.
  • It looks nice inside and out, but what's with the antenna on the roof in front of the car??? It looks out of place, anyone concurs?
  • vcjumpervcjumper Posts: 1,110
    Antenna is part of its Euro heritage since it is heavily based on the current Opel Vectra as the Saturn L Series is based on the previous one.
  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    more and more cars are going to the antenne on the roof centered towards the front.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Hopefully they will do a window integrated antenna when the car is actually produced like on the current Alero. Antennas are a pain.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    The Firestone Affinity bashing will stop once Gm decides to put decent tires on their cars. I also have put 20k+ on my tires and while they do ride fine, they could still be better. The car would ride even better if they had more grip. The reasons GM chose these tires are, they are cheap and they ride quietly which is typical for OEM tires in this price range. I'll keep mine on for another 10k miles but I guarantee you willnot replace them with the same tire.

    tamu: That's great that your Malibu performed well on your trip. I made my final decision on the Malibu when I rent one to go up to Boston. It's a 300 mile trip each way. And the malibu performed nicely. I love mine but I'm not foolish enough to believe it is as good as the Camry, Accord, passat group. Unfortunately GM hasn't put the advertising dollars into this vehicle. Too many are being sold to fleet and rental companies which further hurts not only resale value but the reputation of the car. It's a shame because it seems likethey have gotten all the bugs out of it. Although my brakes were chattering a little which i understand is the beginning of the dreaded warped rotors. Good luck with your Malibu and give us some updates. So far at 23k miles, all i have had to do is change the oil, rotate the tires and put gas in it. Been averaging 22-24 mpg per tank with mix driving. Higher (28-29) with all highway. Lowest tank was 20 mpg.
  • dtownfb.....thanks for the word on the fuel tank....guilty as charged for not reading the owner's manual.... And I berated my wife for not reading her manual on her new car.... silly me.

  • tamu2002tamu2002 Posts: 758
    You're right. I started to fall in love with our Malibu (my wife's anyway) after we bought it. To be honest, I didn't even want to look at it initially. It was purely because of the big rebates advertised. Now If only the Malibu was more exciting to look at...
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    CREDMAN: Don't worry about it. I'm very obsessive about reading my owners' manual. During the first 6 months, I probably read it 3-4 times and that is on top of looking up the recommended maintenance. Most of the manual concentrates on the fundamental operations of the vehicle, like buckling your seat belt, braking, adjusting the seat, etc. So it can be very tedious to read through all 300 pages. And I normally begin to research a car 6 months to a year before I purchase it. You can tell I like new cars.

    tamu: I bought it when they just had the $1500 rebate. it helped to lower the amount we were financing. the malibu didn't comeinto sight both literally or figuratively until we were test driving the Olds Alero. We finally decided against the Alero once we sat inthe back seat and then tried to put a car seat back there. Yikes!!!!! Then I looked over and saw the Malibu and asked the salesman about that car and he said it a nice car with a littl emore room then the Alero. Took a test drive, then rented it to goto Boston and then to DC and was sold. The funny thing is the Accord was our first choice but during the test drive, I noticed the steering wheel of the Accord rested on my knees making it difficult to drive on long trips (I'm 6'4" tall) and my wife was afraid that she would get too many tickets with the Accord. (She was doing 85 mph on Route 78 and couldn't tell until myself and the salesman mentioned it to her) So we opted for the malibu. I like the the look of the malibu event though it is sort of bland. It has that look that won't grow old, similar to the camry and accord. One thing i wish I had done is get the spoiler. The malibu is one of the few cars that look good with a spoiler.
  • larryt22larryt22 Posts: 125
    I went to the Indianapolis Auto Show last week and Chevy had at least one of every model made EXCEPT.....NO Malibu at all!!!! Shame on Chevrolet and the Central Indiana Chevy Dealers.
  • tamu2002tamu2002 Posts: 758
    Hey dtownfb, funny you mentioned the spoiler. Our Malibu does have a spoiler and I agree it adds a lot of charm to the car. I'm glad we looked for one that had it. Our car is redfire which I think is the prettiest color for the Malibu. The Malibu's looks do grow on you (it could be psycological now that we like it a lot) and I like its looks a lot better than I did before.

    I didn't know the Alero has less room than the Malibu. I sort of like the Alero's styling better. Well it cost a couple grands more so we couldn't afford it, anyways. Hey what did you mean when you said you guys didn't feel the Accord's high speed? Was it quieter than the Malibu? Just curious. We didn't test drove the Accord so I have no idea how it compares to the Malibu.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    RE: Accord. Yes it had an very smooth ride. Smoother then the malibu, believe it or not. And this was the 150 hp, 4 cyl. engine not the V6. Also the engine is quieter at that speed(65+) then the Malibu. And the Malibu is not that loud. I believe this is why people believe the Accord is more refined then the Malibu.

    The Alero is the twin of the Grand AM but they are all built on the same platform. The Malibu is a couple of inches longer. Also the Alero shape restrict the interior space. Meaning, it's shape get narrower near the roof of the car. Also the backseat is awful. And it is hard to see out the back because of the roofline of the trunk. The styling is very nice though.
  • Recently while driving on highway at 55mph, car went dead. Pulled off road, put car back in park and it started up like nothing was wrong. Anyone have any idea what might be brewing?
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    larry: read post 1280. I had this happen on Thanksgivng night. have not been able to reproduce it..nor do I want to.
  • deminindeminin Posts: 214
    We recently bought a new Malibu LS with everything except the engine block heater. We shopped several makes, including the Japanese and German cars. While many of them are slightly better in some ways, none offers anywhere the value of the Malibu for the money. The VW Passat was the only car that really was impressive in this class, but is it really worth $12,000 more with similiar equipment? We have arrived at a comfortable retirement, but we didn't get there by spending money unwisely.
    This Malibu will give a couple of old duffers many good miles of enjoyable travel.
    It seems that one of the complaints on this car is the tires...Firestone Affinity. However, they have a UTQG of 500 AB which is better than the equivelant Michelan. I suspect with a regular rotation, they will last well past 60,000 miles. Firestone has taken a lot of heat, but if one looks past the media hype, and the ambulance chasing lawyers, there were probably other reasons for the SUV problems other than just the tires.
    Our Malibu has excellent fit and finish, runs and drives great, has a great stereo, and the sunroof is a hoot. Add to that the $3,000 rebate, and I doubt that there is another car that can compete, dollar for dollar, with the Malibu. We certainly didn't find any.
  • tamu2002tamu2002 Posts: 758
    Congratulations on your purchase deminin. I was glad to see another sensible person on this board. I totally agree with you. In terms of overall value no one beats the Malibu. As far as the Passat costing $12,000 more, I don't care how much better it is!! Gimme a break!!

    I'm also glad to hear you testify the Firestone tires will last over 60,000 miles (hopefully). That's one less thing to spend money on. We have almost 7000 miles on our 2002 Malibu LS and not a single problem. Happy motoring.
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    lasted 37k miles on my 98 Malibu. And I ought to replace them earlier, @32k miles or so.

    I believe, the OEM, factory-installed Firestone Affinity are somewhat different from aftermarket ones, warranted for 80k miles. I looked at Firestone / Bridgestone dealer - the tread pattern were similar, but not identical.

    However, even 30k is decent mileage. Additionally, my driving style and pattern is somewhat hard on tires, especially on edges.

    The recommended tire pressure (29 psi front, 26 psi rear) is on low side. Currently I am inflating tires about 4psi more than recommended.
This discussion has been closed.