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2008-2009 Chevrolet Malibu



  • jerrywimerjerrywimer Posts: 588
    That's the way I calculate mine now. Even given variances in shutoffs for different pumps, the tank size hasn't changed, so the calculated averages should even out over a period of time. But for the A/C question- I see just over 28 when doing mostly highly driving with 3 or 4 people (2 adults, 1 or 2 children) at 65-70 mph, slightly hilly terrain with the A/C on. With just myself, 65 mph, much more hilly all-interstate (mostly, really) terrain, and no A/C (or very little, not much need for it), I see 30-32.

    This is the 3.6l LTZ.
  • malexbumalexbu Posts: 169
    When do you reset it?
  • I bought my 2008 Malibu LT in late April, and have been getting 22 to 23 on average, with mixed city / hwy driving. Best I have seen so far is 25 mpg on hwy. So, I am a little dissapointed so far with 5,500 miles driven so far. My car has the 4 cylinder, but came with the 18 inch wheels only seen on the LTZ model. So, I wonder if I would get better mileage with 16 or 17 inch wheels / tires? Any thoughts out there on why I am not getting better mpg? (I am not a lead foot, and am careful with no fast starts.) Thanks.
  • My LS (purchased at the end of May)has 16 inch wheels and the MPG is the same ...23 as per my previous post .I could probably reach 25 MPG if I turned off my A/C and drove slower. But, I can't understand why some are getting much higher MPG numbers than others ?? :confuse:
  • malexbumalexbu Posts: 169
    In my experience with my two Malibu 2005s, A/C doesn't make a
    noticeable difference for fuel economy. Some may say it does, but I
    just didn't observe it.

    What makes enormous difference, is:

    1. The pattern of driving -- "stop and go" vs. "just go".

    2. The temperature outside.

    If you are unhappy with your MPG now, wait till the cold fall and
    winter weather, when the fuel economy will drop another 3 MPG.

    But the MPG numbers are pretty useless without indicating two things:

    1. How do you measure them (DIC -- when did you reset it? Fuel

    2. What were the driving conditions and mode during the interval the
    quoted MPG refers to:

    a. Weather (often clear from the context, of course).
    b. Road profile (hilly / plain etc).
    c. Average speed (from DIC).
  • I'm not really a MPG fanatic . All I know , I had a 1996 Sunfire and never really checked the MPG ..mainly DIC display . Right now I'm "ok' with the MPG. I'm using about the same amount of gas as my 1996 Sunfire ... a little less than a half of tank communting to work 5 days a week , 32 miles round trip ... and the Sunfire had a smaller engine, 126HP ,I believe
    I just filled up this morning , wrote down the mileage and gals pumped and of course ....reset the DIC display. So, I'll measure the MPG the old fashion way miles driven divided by gal. Also I fill up when the tank is half full . Don't want to get pump sticker $$$ shock,LOL
    PS on my car Invoice sticker EPA rating CITY MPG 22 (WITH RANGE OF 18-26MPG )....HIGHWAY MPG 30 (WITH RANGE OF 24-36)
    COMBINED FUEL ECONOMY ..THIS VEHICLE IS... 25 . So I wonder if (THIS VEHICLE IS..XX. ) that number differs on each 4cyl car off production
  • beach15beach15 Posts: 1,305
    Honestly, those 18" wheels and tires won't make any appreciable difference. They're a tad heavier than the typical 17" wheels, but not hugely so--and they're made for the car.

    The bigger issue is--as I think we've discussed before--is that your computer programming was updated by the dealer with the wheel swap so it actually knows it has the larger 18's on it, and your speedo and such aren't off considerably. Was this done?
  • I did have the dealership hook up my car to a computer, and they confirmed that the car had been programmed for the 18 inch wheels. I just don't understand how I can be getting 22 to 23 mpg mixed city/hwy while others are reporting 28-30 mpg. Thanks for the info, though "Beach15".
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    Does anyone find the steering wheel of the Malibu slightly big, especially compared to Camry, Accord, Sonata & Mazda6? Most GM cars have bigger steering wheels, which feels a little more truck-like, while most Japanese cars offers smaller sizes, which is much more comfortable to use, and feels somewhat sportier.

    If GM is interested in my opinion, I highly recommend to reduce the size, especially in the sedans which supposed to be "sportier", like the Malibu, Caddy CTS, etc.
  • packer3packer3 Posts: 277
    Nothing personal, but think about it, F150 vs new Malibu 9 miles per gallon diff. If you owned the F-150 you had no payments, if you financed the the new Malibu you now take the new payment and minus the mpg diff. you will find the F-150 had better gas mileage than a Prius.
  • packer3packer3 Posts: 277
    You can at anytime reset your mpg trip computer when you change from straight city to highway driving, other wise it will just average itself out all the time.
  • jerrywimerjerrywimer Posts: 588
    Honestly, I don't know that your results are bad for your driving conditions. As others have said, changing the wheels for the larger sizes probably won't help, and in my experience, might actually hurt things more. Larger wheels have generally been said to cause vehicles to use more fuel everywhere else I've seen people comparing that sort of change.

    You said your best was 25 mpg on the highway, but a lot depends on altitude, the grade you were driving on, weather, temperature, fuel (e-10 hurts, speaking directly from experience), average speed, how often you changed speed and how rapidly, etc. The same things apply in-town too. Then there are things like tire pressures (I run ~4 psi over the stickers in mine, keeping close eye on wear patterns and rotating with the oil changes), as well as other maintenance items. Turning off the climate control (heat / AC / defroster) as much as possible, keeping the windows up (see, local climate again- if it's too hot or cold where you are, or too rainy, these last ones can become less practical). All sorts of little things that can add up.

    I can't honestly say that where I'm currently at is the most ideal for getting great fuel economy, but it's not bad. I'd love to have a place where the highway drive was as good as level for my entire commute, otherwise this is about as good as it gets (the steep hills are balanced out in the return trip to some extent, for example).

    BTW, I've tested the A/C vs. windows vs. neither thing with various vehicles. While some other reports are that there's negligable difference, I've pretty much always seen one, with the best always being with windows up / no AC. The compressor drag with my LTZ is particularly annoying, and makes me wonder if I might need to get it checked next service, as it's almost as bad as many 4 cylinder cars I've owned in the past, and is worse by quite a bit than the 2004 Malibu LT 3.5l V6 sedan we had before (meaning, easily felt when under operation, causes car to downshift much sooner on grades, etc.).
  • roho1roho1 Posts: 318
    Concerning tire size does anyone have a link to a discussion on larger tire size?

    I fail to see the benefits of having 18" tires on a Malibu sized vehicle.
  • bandit08bandit08 Posts: 14
    I actually prefer the bigger steering wheel. I feel like I have more control and do not feel it is less sportier.
  • bandit08bandit08 Posts: 14
    Thanks for the tip. I knew you could reset the trip meter but not the mpg one. Next time I take a hwy trip I will try it. Just another note to answer someone's comment about the hwy driving. As I stated previously, I got 34mpg driving at an average of 75mph with the AC on. I checked the mileage the old fashion way, miles driven divided by the gallons I refueled with.
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,703
    It sounds like you are looking at the "Instantaneous MPG", which will fluctuate wildly...

    When I had my 2000 Intrepid with DIC, I averaged about 26-28 on the highway...but when I switched to instantaneous, if I was driving down a hill, took my foot off the gas and coasted, the MPG would jump in 2 seconds to "70 MPG", the highest the numbers would go...I assumed that for that 30 seconds, flying downhill without adding any fuel, the engine was getting 70 mpg, but for a few seconds...once you touch the gas, it would drop in a second to a number in the 20s...

    But it sure was fun to try and get it to read 70 mpg...too bad it was fantasy land...
  • bandit08bandit08 Posts: 14
    No actually I am looking at the actual mpg. Although it never showed 34 on my hwy trip on the meter, I calculated it myself. Honestly I never knew what the mpg instant thing was until now, but assumed it was useless when trying to get the actual mileage.
  • >>I never knew what the mpg instant thing was until now, but assumed it was useless when trying to get the actual mileage. <<
    Can you elaborate ? Still think MPG INST is useless BUT maybe you can clarify
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,703
    INST MPG, I think the purpose of it was not really the 70 mpg thing (altho it was fun) but it would emphasize how mpg would drop with a hard foot on the gas could probably reinforce how, if you avoided jack rabbit starts and held it to 55, how you could change your driving habits to get better mileage...

    Since 80% of my driving was highway, I routinely got between 25-28 mpg on the road, which was OK to me, esp with gas at $1.50 per gallon...
  • bwiabwia Boston Posts: 1,907
    After months of not even one sighting, suddenly today I saw 4 brand new 2008 Malibu's on the streets of Boston. Was that an aberration or is the Malibu drought over?

    For whatever reason the Malibu is a rare bird around here and that was reflected in June sales. Compared to the Accord, Camry, Altima and Sonata, Malibu's sales for June was a distant 19th place out of the top 20. Also, I see fewer and fewer TV commercials as well. Maybe Chevy is saving up for a big campaign push during the Olympics.
  • GM was never that forceful with tv commercials , at least with cars . I was almost shocked to see a 30 sec(maybe 15sec, LOL) commercial for a Pontiac G6.
    When GM made it known that "GM is planning a $100 million marketing assault for the new Malibu so it can get the new car in front of the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord shopper," (taken from the headlines ) I was looking forward to that . Seeing "'TEASER "commercials made me think , well GM eventually will go full force with the promotion .. showing more details about the car . then,,,, fizzle or fade out . What happened GM ?
    I do see a few 08 Malibu now here in North NJ including one or two in the parking lot where I work . A co-worker saw my car in the lot and admired it
    When I first got my LS at the end of May , driving on the highway ,someone gave me the THUMBS UP ^ and asked how I much I paid for it .
    When I got a spare car key made at a Home Depot , the clerk also admired my Malibu . So hopefully you'll see more on the road . I just think GM was a liitle slow promoting it .
    Now lets see what they do with the 2010/11 cars ... Volt, Cobalt replacement (Cruze)
  • packer3packer3 Posts: 277
    Now lets see what they do with the 2010/11 cars ... Volt, Cobalt replacement (Cruze) ect.

    Advertise cars they don't have.
  • bohemia1bohemia1 Posts: 33
    A few negatives have marred my purchase of the 2008 Malibu 2LT V6 A6.
    1) Pulls left & No A/C. Took two trips to service to get it fixed
    2) Second visit: In shop for 3 days for the second alignment and A/C fix. Shop found a loose ground wire that was the A/C problem. Service Manager did a good job of getting these issues resolved once I got him involved.
    3) Bad sway bar. Why would a sway bar fail at 2,400 miles?
    Scheduled to be replaced tomorrow.
    First trip to service was a disaster. I was told they did an alignment but the print-out sheet made no sense and it still pulled left and that the A/C actually worked because the computer did not produce any trouble codes! I guess the sweat running down my back was my imagination.
    I am a GM fan although this is my first GM vehicle in a while. I never had these problems with my Honda's or Mazda's. I am trying to be optimistic that service department will get it all fixed, but I am losing confidence real fast. :(
  • lostwrench1lostwrench1 Ct.Posts: 817
    I know the Chevy Equinox engine is made in China, now I am told that the Malibu engine is made in China. Can anyone confirm this?
  • kplacerkplacer Posts: 97
    Not to my knowledge. The Equinox uses a different engine than the Malibu. I understand the 2.4 liter is built in Spring Hill, Tennessee and Tonawanda, NY. The 3.6 liter V-6 is built in Flint, Michigan. The Equinox uses a 3.4 liter pushrod V-6 that is indeed Chinese-made..
  • packer3packer3 Posts: 277
    I don't think it's the sway bar, not unless it was bent by some one before you received the car, how many miles were on it when you picked it up. They always seem to find a loose ground wire when they cant locate the real issue which is proably in the AC module. Did they replace your shirt or just a thread.
  • beach15beach15 Posts: 1,305
    Absolutely, positively not.

    The 3.6L is made in the US as is the 2.4L, both regular and Hybrid form. And the entire Malibu itself, aside from some outsourced bits and pieces to Canada and the like, is a US built vehicle.

    The 3.4L Equinox engine is a peculiar situation being a US designed and formerly built engine made overseas for that vehicle alone, but NOTHING else, especially not the Malibu. Don't believe what uneducated people tell you, especially around a dealer if they're not worth a grain of salt.
  • guy16guy16 Posts: 2
    I just brought home a beautiful black 2009 Malibu LT two days ago. Besides a small compartment door not opening properly and a clip in the trunk breaking off and having to be replaced, we were totally thrilled with the car. However, today as I went to shift it into park and shut the car off, the car stopped dead and began to roll backwards. As I tried to turn it back on, I noticed that the shift was still registering in the drive position instead of the park, even though the shifter handle was is park. It would not turn on, or shift out of drive, even though it was off and could not turn on. I was really in a pickle. Come to find out, the shifting cable was extremely loose. A clamp or something was broken or missing. The car was towed back to the dealer. I am now driving a rental car until Monday. Is this anything to worry about or just a weird fluke? Thanks for your tips.
  • I paid cash, no payments it's the bohemian way.. As I get more miles on the Malibu the gas mileage gets a bit better. Filled up today and did almost 23 mpg over the last week all around town. We are about to leave on a vacation to Montana & Wyoming. Irritated by today's gas prices but it didn't deter me from the trip. With the truck the present price of gas would have made for some difficult choices on the vacation to make up for the increased cost of gas.
  • I also paid cash . I too , am seeing an increase in MPG . I have close to 2k on it now .At first I was getting just about 23MPG. Now getting 24 . Sometimes 25 MPG on the DIC display . Once it hit 26. One thing I did do was to increase the tire pressure .Running at 34 PSI ;)
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