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2000-2011 Chevrolet Malibu



  • logic1logic1 Posts: 2,433
    but probably not of the Sedan.

    Put more hp and a more sporty suspension in the Malibu Sedan and you have a G6.

    Possibly, if the G6 uses a version of the new 3.6 litre OHC engine, GM could make a Malibu SS using a classic powerful version of the 3.8. I wonder if the current Vette engine would fit?
  • wilfj1wilfj1 Posts: 52
    reply to Tamu...well said! As you may have noticed in my previous posts my sons are sold on imports and are paying premium prices while the old man has always stayed with GM. My wife has had 3 Mustang's since 1966,1980 and 1992. The 1980 is still on the road(city only) without any motor or trany work.this is not a beater. we have maintained the body, working on the rust every year. I wonder how many imports from 1980 are still running around. The Japanese did a real job in taking Detriot engineering and produced a good product, better then domestic, I'm not convinced?. In my view the purchaser of an import has to justify, to them self that they made the right decision and paying a premium price. Hay, we all know that Detriot built some real bummers over the years but they also built millions of great auto's , mechanically and in design. Amen
  • By flooding the N.American market with high-quality cars they made "the big 3" move their behinds. The fact that domestic cars are having less and less major problems with each new model year is the result of enormous competition from the Japanese, imho. You can be a patriot for only so long, after a while you realize that paying huge repair bills is simply not worth it. Besides, is it not UNpatriotic to sell crap to your own people? Every dollar spend on fixing a lemon is a dollar not spend on your family. So, thank you, Japan, for all the good things your brought! Competition - the true nature of capitalism :-)
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    No doubt, Honda and Toyota have pushed the big three quality bar up, especially GM. We have Malibu's sister car the Alero and it has been flawless for our first 5 months aside from a foggy headlight (from car washing) which will be fixed easily. While I think GM still has a way to go, the quality gap is not really significant any more and it's not like Honda's and Toyota's are trouble free. In fact Toyota just announced two major recalls in the past week.

    I admit I like the new Accord, but the money they are asking for a V6 blows my mind, especially since there is little or no discounting.
  • tamu2002tamu2002 Posts: 758
    wilfj1, you're so right. With the current domestic rebates and small quality gap, it's awfully hard to justify paying thousands more for an import, especially for folks like us who literlly have to be careful spending every dollar. And bcmalibu99ls, we do need to thank the Japanese auto makers for improved quality of the domestics. I used to be a big fan of the Korean cars, cheap and long warranty, now I just find the domestics that much more attractive with the rebates. Honestly without the rebates they're out of our reach. By the way I don't quite understand why Bob Luts wanted to get rid of Oldsmobile. To me all the Olds models are handsome and decent cars especially the new Aurora which is just gorgeous. It's a shame they won't be there by the time we can afford one.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Oldsmobile was killed before Lutz came on board at GM. It is a shame, but it was obvious one division had to go and Olds was the choice made.

    You are right though, Our Alero after rebates plus taxes and freight was less than an Accord list prices before adding freight and taxes. Literally thousands of dollars difference.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    I agree the domestics have gotten much better but I do see a disturbing sign by GM and that is decontenting. ABS is now an option on many GM cars while Honda announce that ABS is now standard. Not sure this is a sign of the economy or what. Also remember that the Big 3 can afford to discount their cars since they make so much money on their trucks and SUV. And people forget that Honda is not a big automaker. In terms of international sales they are not even in the top 10.

    Either way we are all benefitting from better quality cars.
  • A little story to illustrate the quality of Japanese cars. About 2 years ago I saw something which I won't forget for a while, because before I saw it, I thought it never happens, and I don't think I'll see something like that ever again. On the side of a highway near Washington DC, I saw a well-dressed man with a very sour expression on his face talking on a cell phone. The man was standing next to a car with a raised hood and flashing emergency lights.

    It was a Lexus

  • Guys, check this pic out. I am probably mistaken, but it looks like 2003 Bu has way too much clearance

  • jbk5jbk5 Posts: 26
    That's the new Outback model.

    Actually to me it looks like the picture was taken from the ground that's why you can see straight through under it. I think it is just the perspective.
  • Has anyone had any trouble with their 2002. It seems slow for a V-6, but now that is has 1400 miles it seems fine. For the price, and with the rebate and no down payment, and the fact that I was driving a 2002 Camry that I was robbed on the lease and they had to rush the financing through before I had a repo, I can't complain. I drove the Camry to California and it was squirrely at high speeds. I also would not buy a Honda because a Honda dealer robbed a friend of mine, and now she is carless. I thought about the Cavalier sport, as it had a manuel and looked sharp, but I'm afraid to buy a 4 cylinder American car.
  • wilfj1wilfj1 Posts: 52
    reply to Annieoak... I also have a new 2002,your right for the first 2000km it was sluggish, no get up and go. It's much better now. This is common on most new cars. The engine etc. have to be broken in that's one reason a new car shouldn't be pushed for at least 1000 miles or more.
    I understand the Cavalier has a good motor, as to performance I don't know. I've never seen a stick sift in Bu. Do they make one? sorry to hear that the import dealers just don't give a person a break.. I guess they don't have to and it's a common story. the Bu is hardly a BMW but it should do the job and the prices are right. Have fun. Wilf1
  • tamu2002tamu2002 Posts: 758
    Our Malibu has over 2000 miles on it now and it can accelerate quite fast if you floor it to make it downshift. I haven't notice any performance change yet since when it's new. We inflated the tires to 28-26 (?) psi when we first bought it as suggested by the manual and got a little over 20 mpg, now we inflate them to 32-30 psi and the mpg is in the upper 20s, 29 for highway.

    I just found out an aquanitance of mine bought a 2003 Corrola for $400 above MSRP and 5.9 APR for 2 years. Talk about being ripped off.
  • tomcat630tomcat630 Posts: 854
    The current Malibu will continue for 2004 as "Malibu Classic", according to Automotive News. While the 2004 "Vectra-bu" gets brought out.

    I wonder if it will have the hood ornaments, opera windows, and cordouroy seats of the '74 models?
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    paying $400 over MSRP for a Corrolla is not being ripped off...that's stupid for whoever bought the car. 5.9 % APR is typical for a car loan now outside the Big 3. Remember nobody puts a gun to your head to make you sign the contract. You can always walk away.
  • Have just purch. a new (demo) 2002 Malibu basic w/6K miles.....several reasons, and it might help someone else in their decision.
    1. I just got rid of my '92 Lumina, same engine, which I had for 10 years and 193,000 miles. Never did anything but change oil every 3500 miles...never gave me any trouble. Had ORIGINAL shocks and EXHAUST system. Stainless Steel, same as my new 'Bu. How much did that save over past few years????
    Had serious problems all along with Brakes...not a bad driver, but the brakes wore out every 15K, then found a Class Action suit vs. GM for brake probs. Had something to do with the brake lines, not the pads...
    Love my '02 'Bu, feel very comfortable in it.... like putting on an old pair of shoes. Tried a Camry, Mazda 626, and Honda before final decision....definitely not worth the extra $4-7K. Yeah, might not be as luxurious, but I'll have the car for 8-10 years, and know that I'll get my money's worth out of it.
    Sorry for the length of this post, but I've read almost all the other posts and know some of you are on the fence about the Malibu, and all I can say is, if it's as good as my 10 year old Lumina, I'll be ecstatic. And, thanks for the tip about the tire pressure (increase by 3 lbs.)...seemed a bit low when I read the I'll adjust it.
  • tamu2002tamu2002 Posts: 758
    Some people just have to buy imports. What can you do. And we all know what that means: high prices and bad treatment. For basic wheels, the Malibu is pretty darn hard to beat. It was actually the only midsize sedan we could afford. Thanks GM, for making your cars so affordable for young folks like us who're just starting a family.

    Congrats credman41 on your new purchase. Hope your Malibu experience turns out to be even better than the Alumina. And it is good to hear another positive testimony. I thought the recommended tire pressures were weirdly low too.

    Our Malibu is running great, good handling and ride, and good gas milage. As far as whether imports offer better everything, I don't know what good a $6000-more-expensive import with a VTT engine will be If you drive the way my wife drives (never accelerate hard, gentle braking, etc). The money could certainly be better spent elsewhere for us. The varous convenience and safety features , e.g. remote lock unlock, trunk release, auto headlight, auto window, and yeah easy car seat fitting, rear door child safety etc, really turn out to be much much more important than I previously thought, and they make life so much easier. And when you think about it, all these things come at a mere $16300 price tag. You see I still can't help praising our Malibu. And this is why I'm getting increasingly upset when some people just act like they've eaten a fly at the idea of buying a domestic.
  • We've been a long, long time together
    Through the bad times, and the good.
    I've got to celebrate you, baby,
    I've got to praise you like I should!
  • wilfj1wilfj1 Posts: 52
    gea, I followed your path just 2 months ago in buying a 2002 Bu from a 91 Lumina. The only difference is they were allowing $ 3000. on the Lumina, excellent condition with 146000km or say 100,000 miles. For 3000 dollars I keep the car! Yes we've had our share of brake problems over the years. However our local dealer now offers a a free brake inspection with an oil change, so I have the brakes checked every 3000 miles to avoid freezing up and a big bill.
    I would be interested in the Class Action Suit ,if you have any info.
    If the 02 gives us the same service as the Lumina we'll be more then pleased. PS I drive the Lumina and my wife has the Bu, I find time to putter around an older car.... waxing,checking for rust not a spot after 11 years. Not much fun with an 02 under warranty!!.Wilfj1
  • tamu2002tamu2002 Posts: 758
    So the take home lesson is-don't trade it in too soon. It's the folks who didn't take advantage of the incentives and are looking to trade in their used car that are hurt the most. It's not as big of a deal for us the new car buyers who plan to keep our car for a while. I do feel for the folks who bought the previous models without the heavy incentives though.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    Thanks for the article. This is why Honda rarely offeres incentives on their vehicles. They immediately shrink the value of the cars. But that is another argument which I don't want to get started.

    The interesting thing is to see if this trend continues of 0% financing, rebates and a glut of used cars. At some point, something has to give. The manufacturers can't afford to keep this up (or can they). At some point people will start to realize that they should hold onto their cars for a coule of more years instead of trading them in once the new car smell wears off. Then what happens.
  • dtown, that's what happens in pretty much every business environment. If there's too much supply, the demand goes down, the prices go down, the production goes down, the prices stabilize. If there is too much demand, the prices go up, the production goes up, the prices stabilize again. So what will likely happen, especially since fewer people will have the means of getting a new car every two years, the demand for new vehicles will go down, but the prices won't go down, as manufacturers already operate with virtually no profit, so they will have to shut down some plants, at least temporarily, and that won't sit well with unions, but sometimes what we want is irrelevant, so some workers will be laid off until the economy improves, many cars get very old, and more people will be looking for a new car. And we'll start all over again :-)

    I am obviously no economist, maybe someone has better understanding of the situation, so let's hear it
  • tamu2002tamu2002 Posts: 758
    There's an interesting piont to this story though.

    Theoretical loss in value doesn't necessirily translate into real world loss. If you try to trade your car to a dealer, sure. But not necessirily if you're buying from a private party or selling on your own. Just try telling this to the private owner you're buying from after a price is agreed on:"I just found out because new cars are so cheap due to heavy rebates, according to the market theory (or whatever) your car just had a value loss of $3000. Can you deduct the same amount $3000 from the price we just agreed on?" I doubt the owner of the car will say "Sure! That's how it's supposed to work right?"

    So the net result is used car owners will either hold on to their cars or opt to sell themselves. And the used car dealers might actually benefit from setting the price by the book--buyer have better luck lecturing them on the theoretical value loss on used cars and consequently getting a better deal, so more people will go to the dealerships for used cars. That said, I doubt even dealers will automatically cut their used car prices by $3000 even though they did that to people with trade-ins.

    The truth is probably somewhere in the middle. The whole thing might not be as bad as it theoretically is.
  • I think it's too late for entry into the class-action suit....and not sure whether it would have affected you in our northern frontier, anyway. About 3 years ago, I received notification from a law firm in NJ of a suit brought by a couple of disgruntled Lumina owners vs. GM for knowingly installing faulty brakes on cars between (I think) 1988-1993..Lumina was among them. Had to send in copies of my receipts for brake work done in past 5 years...fortunately, I had kept them. Was promised 80% rebate on over $1200 worth of work. 2 1/2 years later, got a check for about 10% and was told that over $50,000,000 worth of claims had been submitted for a $5,000,000 settlement with US Govt....hence reduced pay-out. Well, since I had already spent the $$ for the brakes, this was like a $150 bonus, found cash. But, I still revere my Lumnina, despite the brake probs...
    Also, people should really check out interest rates before accepting that 0% financing.... I had a choice: take the 0% or the $3,000 rebate- I checked, found a 5.5% loan which would cost me just a total of $1980 over 5 years... so I took the $3,000 rebate, and earned another $1,000 off the cost of my "Bu. Also, since the Lumina had over 190,000 miles, would have gotten nothing from the dealer, wound up calling a charity to pick 'er up, and got a slip authorizing a $4,000 donation to the charity...worth about $1,300 off my taxes this year..... all in all,, a sweet deal.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    0% does not really hurt car companies that much. It just hurts resale.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    Actually dindak, it does hurt the profits of the manufacturers. Financing was one of the ways manufacturing companies made money. Think about it, sell the car at invoice or below but have the customer finacne the car at 6-9% and a company can make $3000 just on the financing.

    The rebates hurt the re-sale value as well fleet and rental sales. any rebate offered is like taking money right off the top for the car. If think about it, imagine if you bought a Malibu or any other car it was reduced by $3000 off the invoice price because of the rebate. And you happen to be able to pay cash. Say a week or month later you decide to trade the car in for another. The value of the car is what you paid for it minus the rebate (since it came form the manufacturer, you got the money at the sale, you can't get back on the trade), minus the wear and tear for however long you had it.

    The fleet and rental sales hurt re-sale because these car tend to have higher then normal miles on them. And they tend to hit the used car market before lease returns. So you have the same model year vehicle, one with 24,000 miles and the other with 40,000 miles. The higher mileage car is worth a few thousand less then the newer car, plus the additional miles tend to mean that parts need o be replaced sooner then the lower mileage car. The value of the higher mileage car drags down the value of the lower mileage car. Plus the used car market is normally flooded with the fleet and rental vehicles. And these cars typically are not pampered like a vehicle that a consumer owns.

    What is saving Ford, GM and DC is they sell so many trucks, minivans and SUV that have a hgigher profit margin then their cars. I think I read that Ford makes close to $7000 on each Explorer they sell and break even (and sometimes lose money) on the Escort (the article was a few years ago). But you could make up the money on the financing. So i imagine that both GM and DC are inthe same boat.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    One thing you have to remember is even if you sell a used car privately, the price of the car is dictated by your market, i.e. what the used car dealers are selling that same vehicle for. So the rebate is already taken affect on the price of the car, whether you realize it or not. Not unless you get a sucker who doesn't do his homework and is willing to pay more for your car, then he can get at the dealership.

    Tamu: you have to remember that it's supply and demand. There are a ton of used cars on the market so they have to be priced to sell. The used car dealers can't even inflate the prices if they wanted to. If they cahrge too much, people will jsut take advantage of the new car deals. Imagine if a dealer tried to charge you $15000 for 2001 Taurus SE with 17,000 miles. I would laugh at him. Because I know (and he does too) I can get a brand new one with the rebates for about $16500 and maybe even less. Plus I could get a lower finance rate then for a used car.

    This is why I find this whole 0% financing and huge rebates interesting. Right now, if you are short on cash, you can get some dynamite deals on the used car market.

    I look at the re-sale price of the 2001 Malibus and it's scary. But I know I'm not trading in this car for at least another 4 years. Luckily I am enjoying my experience with this vehicle. It has been a very good buy for me and my family.
  • I heard quite recently that GM is doing the best, actually making a small profit last year, while Ford is in a bad shape and lost close to 6 Billlion USD in 2001. It's true, though, that SUVs bring tons of money to the manufacturers. Most of the SUVs are just pickup trucks with a roof over the bed and some extra seats. Yet they cost 1.5 - 2 times as much
  • doesn't hurt the auto companies as much as the press claims. Think about this - last year GM raised prices on their vehicles 3 times(I believe). Now this year, many once standard items, such as ABS are now optional. It costs GM around $315 to put ABS in a vehicle. Now ABS is an option of at least $400 and the base price of the car has not decreased. So, just with ABS there is a price swing or at least $715. The Rendezvous that my wife got at the end of Feb. listed for $27775 now sells (with the same equipment( for around $29795.
    An analyst from ?? just came put with a study that the incentive war is not hurting the big 3 as much as originally thought. Also, the incentives have kept the metal moving and has stopped costly plant slow downs.
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