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2000-2011 Chevrolet Malibu



  • It is nice to know that GM is finally concentrating on cars. The GM lineup looks promising especially the Cobalt with the 2.4L ecotech engine. I thought GM has given up on compact cars. But why GM continues to push pushrod V6 in its Pontiac and Chevrolet line of cars is mystery to me since Cadillac makes an outstanding 3.6L 255Hp Dohc engine for its CTS sedan. Since Ford and DC is moving away from pushrods, how much longer GM sticks with this antiquated technology remains to be seen.
  • pulgopulgo Posts: 400
    is a very bad idea for the environment. It is also harmful for an engine to be left idling for extended periods of time.

    In many cities it is illegal to let your car run unattended. Have you ever thought about the pollution caused by all these idling cars?

    And YES, I am aware that in some climates it is necessary to clear ice from the windows before starting the car. I suggest installing an engine block heater, if possible.
  • is also a bad idea for those of us in tropical climes, since the key FOB has no "windows down" function. The A/C compressor will run on full blast in a 130-degree car, and that'll cut its life dramatically. Will increase GM profits, though. Figures.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    pulgo : Maybe it's bad for the environment but some days when I'm up north and it's -30 it would be nice to heat up the car a bit before bringing a baby or small children into it. I certainly would not use it all the time (I have a garage at home), but it's nice to have sometimes.

    mowtown : Go drive a Bu. The pushrods are better than fine, they are real good. Following the crowd is not always the best thing to do.
  • It's illegal to have a running car unattended because it could be easily stolen, or may start moving by itself. It doesn't apply to the new Bu, as you need to insert the key to start driving
  • vcjumpervcjumper Posts: 1,110
    Aside from being better for the environment, it is much better for the engine to warm up by being driven slowly for a few minutes than being idled for 5.
  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    i've been reading c/d since I was like 10. Been a subscriber since 88......I haven't gotten the new one yet.

    I'll bet C/D bashes Saab for FWD, but screw em. Not every car can be RWD. in MN I need FWD to get around. I've done the RWD thing before (and with snows). Can't afford AWD. I know the Saab is tight in back, but we'll get the big vehicle when we replace my wife's car. The next new car is MY TOY!!!!! Only need to fit a booster seat in it.

    Old bu was actually terribly space efficient and roomy, this one, not so much.
  • you can afford a SAAB but not an AWD???
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Malibu has to be locked before the starter will work also. There is nothing "illegal" about warming up your car unless you are in a city that has a bylaw like the city of Toronto.
  • The March issue of Motor Trend has a clip labeled "Department of Corrections" in which they retracted their COY testing assertion that the Maxx is not worth $4,000 over the Malibu sedan. They've discovered that it's only $1,250 and is now all of a sudden a screaming bargain.

    That's twice now they've said that (also in the mid-size sedan compo where the playing field wasn't level). I can't wait to see the irate letters about the first assertion in next month's issue.

    I HAVEN'T received my March issue of Consumer Reports. CR is also on the hook for saying that about the new Bu when the playing field wasn't level.

    Has anyone seen the March CR yet? They may hold any letters until the April New Car Issue, though.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    "I HAVEN'T received my March issue of Consumer Reports. CR is also on the hook for saying that about the new Bu when the playing field wasn't level."

    Can you clarify what you mean? Im not sure where I read in CR that the Maxx isnt worth $4000 more than the 'Bu. What playing field. I'm confused by your vague statement.

  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    I am working on a possible lease deal right now for a base 9-3 that may fall into the 250-275 range per month. It assumes some trade equity and some money down in addition to their decent lease program on a vehicle with MSRP of around 27-28 and fair resid and money factor. Cash I could buy the car under 25 for sure and maybe around 23-24. But we'll see. Point is that in no way could I approach that kind of deal with an A4 quattro or any other AWD car. I should have clarified that I don't want an SUV or a cute ute.

    If this doesn't materialize I will check out the Mazda6 wagon and hatch or maybe the Mazda3 hatch. The Lancer Ralliart and Focus SVT are other options. A base Maxima on a lease may be it too. If none of those options pan out, I will just keep driving what I got (getting the itch). I had at one time hoped a GM vehicle that I could use my GM card dollars on would materialize, but I am not fond of the Malibu or Maxx, and the Cobalt while attractive is a ways out. G6 is not appealing either. To me.

    My issues with malibu are engine looks and interior. Plus I would like a stick. I will still get around to testing one out for curiosity, but even if I won the car I would still be looking to trade it for something else.
  • alpha: I reread my post, and I think I was clear. Maybe you're rushed today. ;) Anyway, MT spoke of the Maxx recently in its Car of the Year issue (it tested both it and the sedan). MT called the Malibu LT sedan (a month or 2 earlier) something along the lines of "scoring a table at an all-you-can-eat filet mignon buffet joint" when the vehicle tested was equipped well below the level of the other vehicles tested. CR praised an LS sedan as its top-rated American mid-sized sedan and a screaming bargain, when it was equipped well under everything else tested.

    I'm sure SOMEONE wrote in to both publications to complain of the uneven playing field.

    reg: See my posts of today in the Maxx forum re: the Mazda 3s 5-door. You might be shocked in a pleasant kind of way.

    Since I'm working at home this afternoon (lucky you), I'll summarize the C&D writeup on the 9-3 Arc, which is in the 3/04 $35K sedan compo. Basically, it praised the solid structure, spacious interior (guess no one on staff is over 5'5", ahem), and turbo power. It disliked the slippery seats and imprecise at-the-limit handling. It concluded "watch out for that GM DNA. ....based toward the luxury end of the dynamic spectrum. ...rethink the choice of (not getting) an automatic gearbox". The vehicle tested was priced around $34.5 and scored 6th of 7.

    I'm seething once again over Lutz (becoming a daily event). Today he talked about plans for Saturn. Wants styling to pull customers in and drop the awful rebates companywide altogether. Have you seen his latest abomination, the Buick LaCrosse? Always wants to hike prices; never one word about improving quality (which would then in and of itself justify higher prices, but after a multi-year track record is established). One of these days, I'll blow lunch. And I'm a GM-fan (but veering away rapidly, I'm afraid).
  • I saw the new Cobalt at the Phila Auto Show yesterday, and this is what the new Malibu should have looked like. The Cobalt doesn't look cheap and has a beautiful facia (except for the bow tie). I like the look of the four door, especially the rear. Price will be from $16,000 to around $25,000.

    Unfortunately, it has the same ugly bow tie on the front--just like all chevy products. I preferred the swirl emblem on the pre-2000 Malibu much better. I guess they're trying to establish brand identification with that big bow tie, but it's really ugly.

    I also saw the Maxx; not a good looking car at all.
  • Can you use this program at all?
  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166

  • Yea, I can't believe the LaCrosse likers are saying "Import buyers don't know style" when in fact this new Buick has no idea of what it was supposed to look like. "Am I supposed to look like a LeSabre with GS300 lights, Terraza alloys, and a Taurus body?", says the confused LaCrosse. Please....GM needs some good styling to lure import buyers away!!
  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    the LaCrosse at least doesn't look like a Fish on speed, with a vendetta, like.........

    considering how it could have been botched like other recent GM efforts in sedans lets thank the heavens above that it turned out as inofensive as it did.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Again, folks, this is a dedicated discussion to one vehicle. We already have a discussion where we are talking about what vehicle regfootball should buy right here: Mazda 6s vs. Saab 9-3 Linear vs. Nissans Altima and Maxima. He's made it very clear he is not interested in the Malibu, so pursuing this conversation here isn't the thing to do.

    I would really appreciate it if you folks would have this conversation in the appropriate place instead of here where it does not belong.

  • deminindeminin Posts: 214
    I applaud your efforts to keep this discussion on subject, however, it seems to be somewhat in vain. I think I begin to understand the problem, however. When one has been reading, and accepting as gospel, the pap contained in Car and Driver, which, by the way, is a French publication, the problem becomes more understandable. Good luck!
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Well, you are welcome, but let's don't go off on Car and Driver or the political implications you mention either, okay?

    FWIW, I just substantially altered my message #3614 because I suddenly remembered that we do indeed have a perfect place for the conversation that has been happening here.

    So anyway, let's stick to the Malibu in this discussion and find appropriate places for these other thoughts that are well worth exploring.

    There are some really terrific search features on the left side of the page, and as always, I'll be happy to help anyone find any resource around these parts - just drop me an email any time.

  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    "styling to lure import buyers"

    Ya, that's what Camry buyers are looking for, style. LOL.

    Looked at a navy Maxx in the mall this afternoon when I got my hair cut. Looked great and it was attracting attention from passers by looking in. Maxx is a winner.
  • Have you checked Subarus out? All of them are AWD, and most of them are quite affordable, definitely not in the A4 quattro territory
  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    don't like legacy/outback and its too small

    love the wrx, its way too small for me to fit into and its too expensive.

    aslo I don't like the stigma / burden attached with owning a subaru

    sorry about the digression. malibu....malibu.......
  • for taking us a bit off track yesterday, but was trying to help (and hoping that we'd veer back on track after that).

    Anyway, as one member accused me in another forum yesterday, where I no longer participate due to lack of interest ("the Buick"), it seems as if I haven't a clue as to what I want.

    Oh, but I do. I want a Malibu or Maxx. At a fair price that would represent good value for the $. That will take quite higher rebates than are now on the table. I also won't pay over double for a GM Extended Warranty than I paid last time ($950; now up to $2,000) simply because the last-gen Malibu racked up the repairs.

    I do feel sorry for new Malibu buyers that want a GMPP that will have to pay the price for the wrongdoings of the past. It's unfair, and not customer-friendly.

    I'm not trying to steer us again off track, but in my further research yesterday of alternative plans, I discovered that 2 certain Japanese compacts now offer DVD navigation. When do you think we'll see that in a Malibu? 10 years is my guess.
  • Do you really want a nav system? Is it really worth the extra two grand? Personally I do not think it is worth the added cost and I would not use it much. I think you can get a Vibe with one. I would guess that in a few years GM will start offering them across more of their line up.
  • Kindly read Posts #1503 and 1507 in the Malibu Maxx forum re: a situation that needs discussion and action.

    A new Malibu Maxx owner is very discouraged by the fact that there is no "uncluttered" outlet for current Malibu owners to discuss their vehicles. And I agree.

    I tried a few weeks ago, with the Host's enthusiastic support, to stir interest in a Malibu Owner's Club. Not one positive reply, so I'm sitting this one out.

    There are other issues, such as the split between sedan and Maxx, that I'm not touching, since I read early last month (when I was reading months and months worth of posts), about a brouhaha last summer with how discussions are organized and it appeared to have been kind of "heated".
  • Yes, I would, since I do a lot of business on the road. I'm aware that you can buy after-market units, but they're not as useful. And the price is coming down ($1,750 on the Mazda3).

    As I recently posted in the Maxx forum, I'd much rather have NAV than some of the other stuff std. or optional on the Malibu that kicked up the price when the bean-counters priced it. A good example is that I see that Delphi XM stand-alone units that can attach to an existing car radio retail for $119. But GM charges $395 for it on the Bu. Surely, the wiring and antenna can't cost them $276. It's more pension/union-related gluttony.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Great toy but unless you do a lot of travel out side your area it's really not worth the big bucks.

    If I had the bucks to burn on a Nav system, I would not be buying a Bu.
  • Does anyone experience difficulty maintaining a straight line? My 02 LS is very twitchy and wants to wander a lot. Alignment is good. Tires are Firestone Firehawks OEM size. Cross winds are really a problem. Is it the tires or the car?
  • how can I reach you regarding the certificates you have referenced in post #3561?
  • Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,092
    I'm here to announce the new Chevrolet Malibu Owners club now available on Owners Club board. Please stop by and introduce yourself in Meet the Members and let me know how I can help build your club.

    I have linked this discussion into that folder, but it will always reside here in Sedans.

    Looking forward to meeting everyone!

    Owners Clubs
  • to Karen (and Pat, who I'll bet had something to do with it), for getting the Club started. Actually, I misspoke earlier today. I believe it was Pat's idea to start a Club after I questioned the lack of the avalability of some discussions.

    I'll be proud to be an active member; unfortunately, I'll be leaving town from tomorrow morning until late Sat., so I'll have to wait to figure this new stuff out.

    I don't really know how this works since I'm a relatively new member, but my guess is that if we don't use the new discussions actively, they (automatically?) become read-only after a spell.

    Also, I imagine that now that "us owners" can discuss our vehicle-related issues in other discussions, that this board can be used for prospective buyers to discuss the Malibu. Kinda funny that I fit in both categories.

    Thanks again! I hope the new owner that prompted this does the same....
  • Hey, thanks for the interest in the certificates. These are the "GM in the Driveway" certificates that someone else provided a link to earlier.

    Every time they extend this program, they send my wife and I new certificates since we both work at Fairfax. We really don't know anyone around here that could use them, and I figured I'd offer them to anyone out there since a lot of people that visit this board are shopping for vehicles anyways.

    If anyone is interested, contact me via e-mail and I'll send you my address. These certificates are good until mid-March, and they allow the user to purchase any GM vehicle at the supplier discount (just slightly less than the GMS discount). On top of that, you can add any additional incentives.

    Production of the Malibu and Maxx is going well. There is still no end in sight for all the overtime to meet the extra demand. The quality audits are showing impressive numbers too.

    chevyguy657: I apologize for not replying sooner, because I don't check the website frequently enough. I'm 6'5" and I have driven my 04 Malibu for over 8 hrs on a single trip. I absolutely cannot drive with the front seat all the way back. That is how much leg room there is (and I'm mostly legs). My mother-in-law has ridden directly behind my seat several times, and she is about 6'.

    In one of your comments, you mentioned that you looked at an LT, and the faux wood panel around the window switches was loose. I don't work in that part of the assembly, so I can't be positive that this is true of all Malibus, but my car does not have any faux wood panel around the window switches. Were you perhaps referring to a Classic, or was it indeed the 04 Malibu?

    If so, please let me know.

  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Would they work in Canada?
  • Hey Dave. Glad all seems to be going well.

    Yes, the faux wood trim around the window switches on the driver's side was a bit loose. Perhaps the LS doesn't have the trim, but the LT does? Not sure; have only sat in LTs and one base. Didn't notice in the base.

    The worse problem (this is a bit hard to describe, and I'm in a bit of a rush) was that the plastic trim which runs between the driver seat and the driver door (just in towards the seat from the strike plate) consists of two long pieces of plastic that fit together (lenghtwise). On this particular vehicle, there was a significant gap between the two pieces, and despite our attempts to get them to lock together, one of the 2 pieces had been cut too short (distance between the seat and door). It looked really bad, and would for sure have caught all kinds of dirt and grime, if not replaced (which I'm sure it was prior to sale).

    Haven't noticed a single flaw in any of the others.
  • Thanks for your response. I would like to contact you about a certificate, but I cannot get your email from your profile. I am new to the board-is there another way to get your email?
  • Click on the member's name in blue (top of the member's post). I just did it for triedntru and it's there.

    Stuck waiting for associates on a delayed flight. Dum de dum...
  • Sorry, I wasn't ignoring you! I really don't know about the certificates working in Canada. I'd recommend checking out that link that somebody posted a few back. That ought to give all the program details.

    If you can't view my e-mail, it's [email protected]

  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Looks like the US only.

    The girl that cuts my hair offered me a Ford friend/family discount card. Her husband gets a few a year so I may take her up on it. I like the Escape a lot.
  • but beware of numerous mechanical problems. Perhaps, an extended warranty would be a good idea
  • ab348ab348 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, CanadaPosts: 13,497
    The Ford Escape has problems? Then buy the Mazda version. The Japanese nameplate will mean that all problems magically disappear... ;-)

    2017 Cadillac ATS Performance Premium 3.6, 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass S Holiday Coupe

  • I printed off your post, concerning the defects on the cars you saw in the dealership (loose faux wood panel on the door and the poor fit between the plastic pieces near the striker plate). I'll take this directly to the supervisors of the area and let them know that these customer dissatisfiers are getting out of the plant.

    Now that you described it in more detail, I know what you're talking about. People can bash the design of the car, but that's really out of our control here at the plant. We just build what they tell us to build. The items that you described are the plant's responsibility, and I will take it upon myself to make sure the proper people are aware of these issues.

    Thanks for your help.

  • I recently had to drive my employers 2003 Chevrolet Malibu LS sedan. The Malibu had only four-thousand miles on it, but driving it gave me flashbacks of an American sedan I owned years ago, a 1992 Plymouth Acclaim; plasticy & flimsy feeling interior, bouncy & jiggly ride, vague but constant "grinding" sensation in the drive-train, noisy & under-performing engine, and inconveniently placed controls (for example, the Malibu’s HVAC controls become blocked by its ridiculously tall transmission shifter.) However, my 1992 Acclaim had more comfortable seats, rather than the low, flat, unsupportive slabs in this Chevrolet Malibu.
    Driving the Chevrolet Malibu really helped me to appreciate the design, poise, and refinement of my own Honda Accord.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    orbit9090 : Ya.. that's the old Malibu. Drive a new one and then come back.

    bcmalibu99ls : Two guys here in the office have late model Escapes and they have had no real issues. I know the early ones have some problems but I think they have all been ironed out. if the deal is there, I might grab one.
  • Hi,

    I'm Bob in Richmond, VA. We have a 2001 silver Malibu LS we purchased new in June 2001. We currently have about 48,000 miles on it. Its been a pretty reliable car. Had to have the rotors replace just before warranty expired (no charge). Have had problems with front brakes making a squeaking sound when car is in gear and you press on the brake pedal. Squeaks even when you are at a full stop and you change pressure on the brake pedal without causing the car to move. Service dept said the caliper pins needed lubrication. Still occurs every now and then but not as much as before they were lubed.
  • tamu2002tamu2002 Posts: 758
    Are you kiding or asking for trouble? It's funny how people have different opinions about people, I guess the same applied to cars. I honestly don't know what you were talking about. Well, it doesn't matter. Enjoy your Accord.
  • Well, after racking up nearly 500 miles yesterday and today, the A/C is now kaput. Really kaput. Poor me, it was 83 today.

    As you all know, last month it was brakes, big time. This is revenge for complaining about the new remote start likely burning out A/C compressors early in tropical climes. Bet it's the compressor.

    So, I'll be racking up more GMPP expenses on Monday, so GM can raise the price of the Extended Warranty even further.

    This car really IS a piece of junk, you know?

    I posted a description of the exact problem in the new "Problems & Solutions" discussion, as appropriate.

    I need a cot set up at my dealers.

    Guess I'll see the Maxx sooner than I thought I would.
  • Dave, impressed with the action. I hope you're also able to pass on the accolades as well. I've sat in more than my fair share of new sedans, since I'm at the dealers monthly (see prior post).

    At this rate, it's gonna be hard to go Chevy again, regardless of how good the new ones are, sorry to say.
  • (this calls for a celebration; sure took long enough)

    Yesterday, while shuttling associates up and down "killer 95" in SE FL, amidst all of the ugly new Camcords (they are every other car, especially this time of year with all of our northern visitors here. Rarely see a current-model Accord out-of-season, but we still have a ton of Camrys, though), as I approached the Ft. Lauderdale airport exit, I noticed a silver Bu, with spoiler, in the far right-hand lane, about to exit at the airport. Never got close enough to see what trim level it was, or equally interesting, WHAT was driving it.

    I do have to say this: the current Camcords are UGLY compared to the Bu. BUT the Bu ain't pretty compared to the '04 Grand Prix. I was surprised how many of those are on the highways down here (possibly rentals, though the Bu might have been one too, seeing the airport vicinity).

    I'm not on the highway all that often in normal day-to-day activities.
This discussion has been closed.