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Chevrolet Malibu MPG-Real World Numbers

Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,092
This topic is for Malibu owners to post their actual MPG. Please be sure to include whether your Malibu is 4cyl or 6cyl.

"Real World" Fuel Economy vs. EPA Estimates


  • bhw77bhw77 Posts: 101
    Also would be nice to add average speed to compare apples to apples....

    Here is mine
    Malibu MAXX LS
    Avg Speed - 19mh, MPG - 17.5.
    Nothing to brag about...
  • according to the readout, I'm at 28.7 mpg and ave speed of 37 mph. I recently kept track of the amount of gas I used to go about 1000 miles and it averaged out to be 27.9 mpg.
  • mr_botsmr_bots Posts: 236
    I'm getting about 19 - 22 in town and 32 - 34 on the highway with my v6 ls sedan.
  • firemanjackfiremanjack Posts: 123
    '05 Maxx LS V-6...With about 6000 miles on the car, I took a 400-500 mile oneway trip to southern Ontario from here in downstate New York, mostly 65-75 MPH.. got 30.9 and 34.9 on the two tankfuls I checked..The car is amazing on gas..
    Locally...with a lot of stop and go, and idling...I get between 22 and 25 MPG.
    These are the figures I took from the readout on the dash..Even asuming they are 2 MPG optimistic, these are great figures..And the car is really fast..
    With the traction control on..I got ticked off a few week ago and nailed it...I must have laid about 100 feet of rubber..I was shocked..and then embarassed...what a's there when I need it...I love this car..Jack
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    road trips have averaged 28-31. The trip computer is about 1.5 mpg too optimistic, not bad. There was some comment here about the odometer being too optimistic. If that's the case mpg would be worse as I haven't computed that only taking the odo. and gallons to fill.
  • kurtamaxxguykurtamaxxguy Posts: 677
    gets 24-26 mph for a mixture of half freeway/freeway parking lot and half in-town city street driving (60 miles of this per day).

    For freeways, it gets 26 - 32 mph depending on maximum speed (80 mph's required on CA. interstates or you're run off the road), hills (lots of mountains on the I-5), and headwinds.

    Runs fine on regular gas.
    The mileage computer averages things out so intensely it's of very little help.
  • montebumontebu Posts: 10
    My latest figures are:
    272 miles with a mix of highway and city driving. DIC returned average speed of 30 mph and mpg reading of 29.4. Took 10 gallons to fill tank. That gives me 27.2 mpg. Accounting for a four percent odometer error gives me 26.1 mpg. I have about 3600 miles on the car at this time.
    One item to note is that I'm driving to maximize my mpg, meaning no fast starts and keeping my speed down (where possible) on the highway. Next tank I'll try driving in a more 'normal' style.
  • bryan200kbryan200k Posts: 64
    I have 130,000 miles on my 2000. I drive 500 miles per week highway at 70-75 mph and about 50 miles per week city/local at avg of 35-40 mph. All highway mileage, I get between 29 and 30 mpg. Around home, I'm closer to 26-27 mpg. I did take a 1200 mile round trip between Central PA and Chicago, that I got between 34.5 and 35.9 on my fill ups, averaging about 65 mph speed.
  • fulloutpwrfulloutpwr Posts: 11
    Currently, im getting approx. 420 miles per tank, and 13.9 gallons at fillup. 85 octane... mostly highway with a/c on... the little driving i do besides highway is on a military base.
    FYI- 5100 miles, oil changes every 2000 miles, first one was at 200 miles.
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    1. There is no 03 Maxx, it didn't appear until '04
    2. Your oil life monitor is very sophisticated (if you have an 04+) taking starts, warm-ups, times you floor the car, etc. into consideration. In my case I can easily get more than 7000 miles on an oil change-- the ohv V-6's are VERY easy on oil.

    Any SM oil can easily go 4000 miles in any car-- far longer in the Maxx. I use Pennzoil which is a group II+ oil. The Mobil 5000-7500, Chevron-Texaco, or Phillips-Conoco oils are all excellent. Phillips has lots of group III-- in essence you can get a good quality synthetic blend for a bit over a buck at WallyWorld or $1 (but you can't get 5w30) at Dollar Tree. Dumping great oils like that at 2000 miles is very wasteful. Get a UOA if you doubt me.
  • tiger10tiger10 Posts: 46
    I have a 2005 4cyl. Malibu Base Sedan and i am getting about 28.1 mpg in city and 35.5 in Highway. i love this car. :)
  • fulloutpwrfulloutpwr Posts: 11
    didnt realize the 03... its an 05 Maxx! :D
  • my05lsmy05ls Posts: 2
    Just bought mine last week. 05 Malibu LS Sedan. 650 miles as of today.
    From the DIC
    Average Speed - 29mph
    MPG - 26.1
    It was about 50/50 highway/city.

    Also did an oil change today with Mobil 1 5W-30 and Fram doublegaurd and did reset oil life indicator back to 100%
  • willscarywillscary Posts: 21
    I bought a certified 2004 Malibu LS a few weeks ago. I drive to work 65 miles each way, about 90% highway. My average speed (which I reset every time I fill the tank) has been either 50, 51, or 52 mph. I do not use the computer fuel economy reading. I have always kept track of fuel economy in a book for each car since I started driving 22 years ago. My wife is also trained to write it down. The Malibu is strictly my work car, replacing a 1998 Chevy Prizm 5 speed that averaged just over 40 mpg over its 170,000 mile lifetime. So far, with 6 full tanks of gas through this beast, I am averaging 37.2 mpg. I generally drive very easily, setting the cruise at 60 mph for the majority of the commute. There are only 2 stops and 3 other slow spots each way. All tanks have gone between 550 and 562 miles, and each fill has been between 14.8 and 15.1 gallons. It is summer here in Wisconsin, but I have only needed the air conditioning for about half of the homeward trips, and have not used it at all in the morning (between 5 and 6 AM).
  • So is a Maxx a good Wisconsin car? My daughter will probably move to Milwaukee in September. She was driving a 97 camaro but I wanted a front wheel drive for her so I bought the Maxx.
  • willscarywillscary Posts: 21
    I own the sedan. So far I love it, other than the original tires. I won't know how it is in snow for another 4 or 5 months. by the way...Milwaukee is not exactly like the winters we have herein north central Wisconsin. Temps here can be 20 degrees colder in the winter, and because Milwaukee is on Lake Michigan, it is generally a bit cooler than it is here in summer.
  • should I plan on getting another set of wheels and snow tires for her? Being from the south, I know nothing about snow tires. What would be a good brand to buy?
  • willscarywillscary Posts: 21
    I am going to replace the factory tires with Goodyear Assurance Comfortreds. The factory tires are so-so in the summer, and they may be OK in the winter, but they are the only thing I hear in the car. I do not hear wind noise or the motor.

    Snow tires would be nice, and they work very well. Nobody I know personally has ever used them though. If you slow down during bad weather and shovel your driveway you shouldn't have any problems. What shuts down everything from the middle of Indiana and southward is an every day snow for us. Your daughter will need to learn to drive in slippery conditions. Generally, if we get 4-12 inches of snow, the plows make a pass or two, but the roads are still snow covered and slippery until mid to late morning, when the salt starts to clear it away. By the next day, the roads are clear. When the roads are slippery, she will need to take extra time getting to where she is going, but she will learn. Heck, every driver in the state has to relearn how to drive on snow and ice every fall.
  • beedublubeedublu Posts: 236
    I've had my 04 Maxx LS V-6 for just over 10 months, and my average MPG works out to about 26. Most of that is in suburban traffic at maximum speeds of 50 mph, on a 10 mile one-way commute with about a dozen stop lights.

    On long trips, my best mileage was 31 MPG. That was going about 65-70 mph with AC on most of the time.

    Regarding those snow questions, this car rocks! Winter driving here in upstate NY couldn't be much easier. :)
  • maxxolivermaxxoliver Posts: 78
    I am at this point not to happy with the mileage on my 05 Maxx LT and I am hoping this will change as it breaks in. The first Maxx we had was a :lemon: and GM bought it back the mileage on it was good. So far I have 1800 miles on this one and I am getting 17 around town and 21 or so on the highway. I really hope this will change soon. Anyone have any ideas why this is so bad or what I can do to make it better? Thanks
  • maxx4memaxx4me Posts: 1,340
    the first number does not bother me as long as you are driving in a city with a lot of lights and stop and go. In such conditions, you should see mileage between 17-20. I drive in "urban" conditions, not city conditions and get 22 mpg. It is the second number which is bothering me. If you actually do nothing but straight highway for 2+ hours, you should expect 28-33.
  • maxxolivermaxxoliver Posts: 78
    My husband drove the car for over 4 hours and approx. 275 miles I added another 50 around town and the mpg was 21. I would have expected better also. I know there is a break in period and hope that this will improve. We are planning another long drive so I will see what happens then. The first Maxx did much better than this can there really be this big a difference just between tow similar cars?
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    I am sure this is too obvious but you drive with the gear shifter in "D" position right?
  • maxxolivermaxxoliver Posts: 78
    yes, it would wind too tight in any other gear going that fast and that would sound bad.
  • bhw77bhw77 Posts: 101
    I have pretty much same MPG numbers for my 04' Maxx
    17.5 average in city - cannot comment highway MPG, mostly drive city.
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    do to a temp move..Im doing a 145 mile commute round trip..averaging about 26-28 per gallon....about 60 miles rural roads....spd limit 45 MPH and the rest interstate 70-75MPH with intermittent stops for rush hour traffic in northern VA.....04 Maxx LT with almost 32K on it...still running good!!
  • simonesimone Posts: 18
    2004 malibu lt with just over 37,100 miles mostly freeway driving (95%) avg speed of 70-75 mph. Car is averaging just about 32-33 miles per gallon per fill up while the dic indicates about 35.2 mpg. Car has handled just great and I am very pleased with it... :) :)
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    Saint Charles County, MO to Bemidji, MN and back. Tried going through Madison WI on the way back because two of the three mapping services routed me that way. Dont!

    Averaged around 30 mpg and most of the weather was miserable hot! Given the oxygenated gas in urban areas at least, I'm pretty happy.
  • Taking my 05 Malibu LT for its first long trip. Driving from New York to Florida. Been getting 30-32MPG on highway driving with A/C on and driving 70-80 MPH. Very satisfied with those numbers but find that the driver information center is a little more generous-it displays up to 33.6 MPG. Does anyone have any issues with the temperature display. Seems like it's always 5-7 degrees hotter than actual??
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