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2008-2009 Chevrolet Malibu



  • albookalbook Posts: 1,282
    Where is the 5 speed manual transmission? If this car came with a modern diesel engine and 5 speed I would already be in line to buy it.

    You, and not many others. I can see the deisel, but a manual is not big in this market. And Chevy has to appeal to the masses.
  • albookalbook Posts: 1,282
    None. How could chevy leave this out? It's something so simple. That's definitely getting dinged for comfort/ quality.
  • hello,

    i'll be attending a social media preview for the 2008 malibu in a couple of weeks (november 2/3) and i was wondering if there were a list of questions that you'd like answered?

    when i get a chance to ask questions at the preview i'll try to get through as many on your list as i can. it all depends on how many people speak up at the event.

    i will be happy post back the answers to this forum.


  • Thank You.
    Question: Does GM have any plan to put a manual transmission into the new Malibu?
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    When will the 6-speed automatic become available on other 4 cylinder trim levels besides LTZ (phaseout of 4-speed)?
  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,600
    Re Message 513, assuming the '08 Malibu indeed has no rear center armrest, even in the LTZ, please ask why this feature wasn't included.

    Do Camry, Accords, and Altimas have rear center arm rests? If yes, is it on all trim levels, or just the top one(s)?
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    The Saturn Aura doesn't have the rear seat armrest, so the Malibu is the same.
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    C-pillar was better than I thought

    Rear is better than I thought.

    Thought it would look a little like a Mitsu. Diamante, but in person looks more like a Toyota Avalon. Maybe even a VW Phaeton with the c-pillar, I know Lutz was trying to emulate a European look.

    Gray LT interior will be criticized for looking bland, didn't find it too objectionable. Will have to make my mind up on the instrument bezels when I get behind the wheel.

    Lutz brags about the hood, but this leaves an additional seam. All seams look tight.

    Chevy logos on lights in front and rear of car.

    I questioned a post that called a 57 inch tall car too low but it looks very low for something of this height. Windows are smaller than present gen. but I guess that's the present styling trend. Rented an HHR last month and got used to the small windows, wonder how they'll go with the wide c-pillar? Blind spots?

    To me it looks about as good as the Accord and better to me than the Camry. Details might be better than Aura, but I'm not sure if the overall design is as clean. Haven't checked but I think it's shorter than the Accord, has that "big" look,like the Accord, however. Don't know if I like the constantly expanding size of mid-sizers into large, but I guess it's to match the increasing butt and gut size of baby boomers.

    Haven't checked the lack of a rear armrest, but will be disappointing if it's missing. Comes in handy in my 05 Maxx.
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697

    It appears that the Aura is getting 6-speeds, so the Malibu is probably the same.

    So the 2008's with 4-speed auto look like a stop gap until they're able to increase production of the 6-speed automatics.
  • mackabeemackabee Posts: 4,709
    Yes, and yes.
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    I know...different classes of cars...but hey...currently in 04 Maxx LT.....looking at the new 08 Malibu....08 CTS and will wait to see the 08 G8....

    right now....for the $$...I leaning toward the CTS....test drove this weekend..and WOW....will wait on the others...before deciding how much $$ I really want to part with....
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    As an owner of an 05 Maxx (and user of general 'Bu boards), I was disappointed that the 04-07 cars were mixed in with the earlier Malibu/Classics. Just made it tougher on everybody.

    Hopefully people will start things off right with expanding the 08+ Malibu boards to reflect the new platform and not mix things up further.

    BTW--the new car does look better at the dealers than the pictures indicate.
  • rvothrvoth Posts: 147
    Today I was my first 08 LTZ malibu , loved the what they have changed . The front interior is a better improvement over the previous model, smoother lines with the dash and center console. The rear seating area is tighter than my 05 with alot less head room with that sloped roof. There is this annoying bulge in the roof that starts from the dome light on the roof and goes back to the rear window.
    The trunk space has a higher lift lip than previous model and the width of the opening is alot smaller, the length of the trunk is longer. Although the mechanical support for the truck doesn't protrude into the truck space like the old model .

    The front view could be mistaken for the Impala but it's different. I will be keeping my 05 malibu it's has more room than the new 08. Just my opinion.
  • pmerk28pmerk28 Posts: 121
    Took a long look at the new Malibu at the Long Island Car show. Looks very nice on the outside. Interior is better BUT (insert the killer phrase here) it's still not up to the level of Toyota ( which has gone down) Honda ( ditto) or Nissan ( which has gone up). GM generally sells price not product and the Malibu will probably do nothing to change that. The gauge cluster is particularly cheap looking. I won't cross if off my list though.
  • albookalbook Posts: 1,282
    GM generally sells price not product and the Malibu will probably do nothing to change that.

    This and other GM models are fast changing that. I have no doubt that the Malibu will gain some huge market share, because this actually feels like a respectable model. Camry will still be no. 1- for now. But in 5-10 years?
  • pmerk28pmerk28 Posts: 121
    This and other GM models are fast changing that. I have no doubt that the Malibu will gain some huge market share, because this actually feels like a respectable model. Camry will still be no. 1- for now. But in 5-10 years?

    It's going to take a string of hits from GM to make people forget all the lousy cars they have put to market. Where I live in the NY metropolitan region the reputation of GM passenger cars seems almost beyond repair. For once I would like them to produce a passenger car that beats Camry/Altima/Accord hands down. Instead the only reason you ever get for a buying a domestic nameplate sedan is " "it was cheaper"

    Hyundai and Kia have a better reputation around here than GM. It really is a sad state of affairs. GM just cannot seem seem to build a competetive passenger car with the right combination of features/looks/driving dynamics and quality at a price point people find acceptable.

    Everytime they make an attempt it's the same story: leave off features people want and expect (like bluetooth), make the interiors better but still have enough cheap parts to remind you it's not a Honda, always trail in mpg estimates. It can only be good for the buying public to have more competition but it's hard for me to see GM ever getting there. I hope they do.
  • When I sat in new Camry I could not figure out what is wrong with interior, but something was certainly as high quality as used to be.

    But with Aura I immediately noticed shiny plastics and flimsy door panels and arm-rest as well as a hard plastic on lower dash. GM's problem is that they cut corners at places that user frequently sees and touches. It irritates a lot during everyday drive.
  • albookalbook Posts: 1,282
    Like I said before- GM is changing their image. The Malibu is one of an expanding number of GM models that are more reliable and better fit the competition. THe malibu almost fits what you want GM's perfect passenger car to be. Sure it may just lose to the Camry here and there, but the Camry has been one upped, too, by the Accord. THere is always something better. Gm's improving. And they don't have to erase an image. All they have to do is score a couple of hits from a consumer guide giant, like COnsumer Reports.
  • mackabeemackabee Posts: 4,709
    "Sure it may just lose to the Camry here and there, but the Camry has been one upped, too, by the Accord."

    In what respect? Other than the coupe the sedan is nothing to brag about. Looks like Saturn and Gm had a hand in designing it. If anyone one is going to catch Toyota and Honda it will be Hyundai. They are in their rear view mirror and gaining. Go ahead and laugh but I will bet the house that in 5-10 Hyundai is on par with Honda and Toyota if not ahead of them. Look how long it took Toyota to get where they are today.
  • Don't let the Honda fans here you say that, they tend to slam Hyundai quite a bit. Good thing you posted it in a spot most of the avid fans avoid :) . But I do agree, if Hyundai plays it right they can reach that level.
  • bmarkbmark Posts: 52
    I am not sure what you all are talking about but Hyundais are some the ugliest most boring cars on the road. Yeah the relaibility is good but who cares they are crap
  • wayne21wayne21 Posts: 257
    Don't let the Honda fans here you say that, they tend to slam Hyundai quite a bit. Good thing you posted it in a spot most of the avid fans avoid . But I do agree, if Hyundai plays it right they can reach that level.

    My accord was very well cared for, but had TWO bad transmissions (transmissions have been a problem for honda for years - google: honda transmission problems). No other problems with the car, but believe the hyundai sonata to be just as good a car for a lot less money. Just as honda has had transmission problems for years, Toyota has had engine sludge problems (google: toyota engine sludge) and the new camry 6 speed automatic has a lot of problems. So you pay your money and take your chances.
  • ddeliseddelise Posts: 351
    I stumbled upon an opportunity to test drive a 2008 Malibu LTZ today.

    Jewel Red exterior, cashmere/cocoa interior, sunroof, rear power pack.

    I currently drive a 2005 Malibu Maxx LT (which I like). Here are my impressions:

    Exterior: Car looks MUCH more upscale than current model. From far, I think it kind of looks like a Lexus GS series. The 18" wheels do look nice (but probably expensive to replace...). There are lots of nice chrome details such as the rear border around the license plate along with the dual exhaust pipes. Overall, a very nice looking car that catapults this Chevy into another realm.

    Interior: Overall impression is very nice. The door panel sides are somewhat soft, not the rock hard plastic in my Malibu, making a nice resting area for your elbow. The switch gear all have a nice upscale feel to them - movements are liquidy, if that term makes any sense. The interior materials and colors do blend well with one another. The center arm rest is nicely padded, slides forwards and backwards, and there are multiple compartments within it. The seats were supportive, and with the seat adjustments, the tilt/telescoping wheel, and the movable pedals, there is no way anyone should not find a comfortable seating position.

    As for a complaint, I was not as impressed with the radio as I had hoped to be. I set the equalizer up properly before listening. While the sound was loud and never distorted, it felt kind of boomy/flabby. Maybe after awhile the speakers would sound better, but not sure at this point.

    I was surprised though in that the space, especially in the rear, is kind of on the small size. I researched interior size against Fusion, Accord, etc. and by numbers the Malibu is smaller. In reality, it does hold true.

    The driving impression was solid. The car had nice pickup (I noticed a little, not too bad torque steer). The engine note was muted, but MUCH IMPROVED over my Maxx (not tinny at all under hard acceleration). The transmission shifted smoothly and downshifted quickly. I did try out the paddle shifters on the wheel, but I did not have time to test them thoroughly. The suspension felt right - tight, but not punishing.

    Overall, I really like the car. I am a little concerned with the size (I have 3 small kids is the reason - should be sufficient for most others). I also hope that my initial impression of the radio was just a bad one and that the sound is much better than what I heard today.

    Right before the test drive, I drove a Mercury Milan V6 Premier. The one I drove had many of the same features without the sunroof, stability control, wheels were smaller, no remote start. But for the Milan it was fairly loaded at $25k. The Milan is also a little bigger, but it actually drives a little tighter due to suspension set up. This too was a nice car. I think transaction price between a loaded Fusion/Milan with comparable (but not same) options will be about $2k - $2.5k less vs. the LTZ.

    That being said, Chevy has a winner here.
  • pmerk28pmerk28 Posts: 121
    All makes and models are supposed to improve on the previous generation. The fact that this new Malibu is much better than the outgoing model is irrelevant. The point is can this car compete with Camry/Accord/Altima? Three models which in combined sales move probably a million units a year without sitting all over rental lots. Looks go along way and this car looks very nice. Unfortunately GM's well earned reputation of making cars inferior to Toyota/Honda and Nissan is going to take a long time to be erased. If ever.

    Gm needs hit after hit in the passenger cars segment that do not require $5,000 of MSRP to move off the dealer's lots.
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    Considering that the car is at dealers already, I'm surprised that there are few very detailed road test reviews from the car web sites or magazines?
  • albookalbook Posts: 1,282
    Don't let the Honda fans here you say that, they tend to slam Hyundai quite a bit.

    Yeah- like this guy:

    I am not sure what you all are talking about but Hyundais are some the ugliest most boring cars on the road. Yeah the relaibility is good but who cares they are crap

    This statement makes no sense. Who ever this guy is he needs to think before he posts, and he is just mad because the media gives Hyundai Sonatas more praise than his Camccord. Forget 5-10 years from now- Hyundai is as good as Honda Toyota NOW. Compare their SUVs. You'll see.
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    Present rides 05 Malibu Maxx and 07 Kia Optima.

    I think that the new 'Bu roughly equals the Accord and comes in better than the Camry. Frankly I think my Optima beats the Camry as well at least in the fit and finish department. The Malibu looks better all around than both the Optima and Sonata although the 09 interior Sonata upgrades may put it back on top if it matches (say) the Veracruz.

    Didn't get in the back seat but had plenty of front room. The two tone brown leather looks much less garish than in the pictures. The Accord's interior may be slightly better but I like the exterior lines of the Malibu. I know Lutz likes the new hood but it gives it an extra seam on each side of the front clip. The seams do seem pretty tight, though.

    To me the interior looks better than the Saturn Aura, but not the exterior. So, if you had a three way comparo with an Accord and an Aura the 'Bu might finish second out of three on both interior and exterior design.

    I'm not a huge GM loyalist. Neither am I strictly for American cars. In the last twenty years I've had good luck with three Korean cars, a fair amount of used Prizms and Toyota Camrys, two GM cars and a Dodge van (only troublesome car since the mid-eighties, really). I'm happy with my present rides but would be wide open for a replacement.

    All in all a big improvement on the present car, too bad they killed the Maxx. I still love my Maxx! Nothing beats a largish hatch.
  • albookalbook Posts: 1,282
    The new thing instead of wagons is CUVs- like the Equinox. But the new Malibu would look great in hatch form- really great.

    Can't wait to see the new Impala!
  • mackabeemackabee Posts: 4,709
    I agree, but their reputation for shoddy quality from the mid eighties still lingers on with many consumers. The Veracruz is a hell of an crossover. I put it next to a Highlander and I was very impressed with it. I would buy one myself if I were in the market for something like that.
  • murphydogmurphydog SeattlePosts: 679
    Went to the seattle auto show yesterday to look at replacing the wife's SUV. Also wanted to look at new sedans, especially the Malibu and the Accord.

    Either I missed it, or Chevy did not bring it, but I could not find an LTZ (highest trim I think) Malibu to look at. There was a very plain model to climb in - not bad, but I wanted to see the best Malibu that Chevy is going to offer.

    Over at the Honda display I saw a mid level accord and an EX-L V6 with Nav - nice car IMHO.

    I was dissapointed that I could not compare the both top of the line cars back to back. :confuse:
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