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2000-2011 Chevrolet Malibu



  • micwebmicweb Posts: 1,617
    On my Ford, Express Lane oil changes are only $26 while you wait (about 45 minutes).

    On my Chevy, the dealers want $39 and to keep the car all day. What gives?
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    All depends on the dealer, not much to do with Chevy.

    My old dealer downtown used to do them as you wait with a free coffee. One in the burbs now is not as efficient and I usually just got to Quick Lube. Takes about 15 minutes there.
  • charts2charts2 Posts: 618
    .....My chevy dealer does oil/filter change in 29 minutes or the next one is free. (free coffee and newspaper too).....Dindak John Holland in Burlington...still not impressed with the side view of the new Malibu.....sides are too flat and tall..the car is shorter looks like a large toyota echo especially the base model with 15" wheels. GM always shoots for the middle never the top when it comes to competing...its too bad I have been driving only Chevys since the late 60's, Malibu has a nice solid ride but the budget interior doesn't excite me... for a few hundred $$ more they could have added a little flair.....
  • prigglypriggly Posts: 642
    Went to my local Chevy dealer to check out the 2004 Malibu LT and here are my impressions:

    this is a greatly improved car compared to its predecessor. I personally like the exterior styling save for the silly spoiler which has been added for merchandising purposes. Otherwise, looks fine. The paint job on the particular car I saw was superb. Door panel, trunk and hood tolerances were exact. Doors closed with the appropriate "thunk" and felt solid, much better than previous model.

    Interior fit and finish, materials, ergonomics, seats, instrument lay-out were all well above average with one exception. The front head rests were awful. Much too sharp and inclined forward at too great an angle so that they jutted into the back of my head. Most uncomfortable. This has been noted and criticised by other reviewers. Since there is no angle adjustment, it appears one is stuck with it.

    The instruments and controls were comprehensive and moved with proper damping and a solid feel. Quite Japanese or European in feel. Gone were the flimsy stalks and dials of old. The seat fabric was nice. The seats were appropriately supportive. There was ample room in the interior as well as ample room in the trunk.

    The rear seat was spacious and comfortable and wonder of wonders - there were two very good head rests for outbound passengers although none for the middle passenger. These head rests for some reason were appropriately angled without the "jut" feature of the front head rests. You know GM has come a long way when they recognize that the rear seat passengers also have heads and need head rests just as much as the front seat passengers.

    I cannot comment on the handling, acceleration, etc. of the car as I have not yet driven it but from the reviews I have read its driving characteristics are above average.

    Overall, an excellent effort but FIX THOSE FRONT HEAD RESTS!
  • Boy, it sure got quiet here in a hurry. Did I miss something?

    I bought a navy blue 04 Malibu LS last night. Driving it home from the dealership was the longest drive I've been on so far. I adjusted the pedals as far away as possible, and I scooted the front seat all the way back. I'm 6'4", and I found the legroom almost cavernous! Of course, I've been driving a Sunfire the last two years...

    Overall, I really like the car. I'm curious to see what I think of it after the newness wears off. I'm not a big fan of the design on the cloth, but then again I'm not constantly looking between my legs while I'm driving either.

    I didn't get XM or Onstar. Those antennaes do nothing for the looks of that car. I noticed in the XM pamphlet that there is a radio station available at an extra fee called "Playboy Radio." Do they just read you the articles or what?

    Anyways, thanks to those who have asked for the certificates. I'm glad they're actually going to get used. I have 3 left that aren't spoken for. I've got one set aside for everyone that's e-mailed me so far.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Hey, congrats on the new Bu. I saw my first one on the road yesterday.

    What kind of deal were you able to get?
  • I think the MSRP was around 22,500. The GMS price was around 19,300. So, with the $1000 cash back incentive, it was around 18,300. I'm not complaining.

    I would've rather held out for a Maxx, but my wife just doesn't like them.

    Do I hear crickets?
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Ah, GMS pricing. Must be nice.

    Sounds like a solid deal. Let us know how you are enjoying it over the next few months.

    Why did your wife not like the Maxx? I like it better than the sedan.
  • I live outside of Philadelphia, and our local dealer has one 04 Malibu. It's a loaded top of the line. Get this, they have an Adjusted Market Value sticker for $800! This is the type of stuff Toyota used to pull about a decade ago.

    As I looked at the front, I thought, "where have I seen this before?" Then I remembered, it looks like a mid-60s AMC Rambler! Before everyone has a stroke, I own an 01 Malibu LS, and the car has been perfect. So I'm not a Chevy hater. A lot of people think the styling of 97-03 Malibu was ugly, but I disagree; the facia and profile are beautiful.
    A lot of people were anticipating the new Malibu, but I find the styling to be disappointing. The car may ride and handle well, but you'd think GM would have been a little more inventive with the look--especially the facia. I was hoping the '04 would tempt me, but no way would I trade my current car for this one. My old aunt might buy, she loved that Rambler.
  • I'm not really sure about the new Malibu. There's just something about it. I think it's that chrome bar in the front under the headlamps. It just seems to say "economy" all over it. The inside resembled a Saturn too. So in time I'll see if I like the looks more.
  • I, too, think the "classic" Bu is WAAAAAAAAAAy better looking than the "new and improved" one. Especially since mine is silver and it just looks fantastic after a wash on otherwise grey rainy streets. The new Bu, on the other hand...let's just say Optra looks better

    I think the designers are using the wrong focus groups. The last versions of Camry and Accord are way uglier than predecessors as well.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    I see absolutely no resemblance to any Saturn inside the Bu. Chrome bar seems more truckish I guess, but the new Civic has one also so..
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Edmunds First Drive is now accessible via the Helpful Links box on the left side of the page.
  • logic1logic1 Posts: 2,433
    I think it looks nice enough, myself. I also thought the Edmunds review is very nice. I look forward to a comparo.
  • popadopolispopadopolis cnyPosts: 14
    Best of luck with your new Maibu,and thanks again for the cetificate. Did you consider the extra warranty offered by GM? I'm considering taking it. I guess it all depends on the price they offer it to me.
  • We have '00 Malibu Ls. ~41,000 miles. Coolant leak was noticed. Took it to the dealer who claimed it was the waterpump. Less than a week later, same leak was found. Dealer, said it was intake manifold gasket. About 2-3 weeks later,(~1200 miles), the leak has now returned, though it looks offset a little to the right. The original leak was under the driver's side, and now is more towards the center.

    They did "squeeze" the gasket work under warranty, however I swallowed the costs of the waterpump.

    My fear is that the intake gasket replacement was done poorly or improperly. I am going to call the dealer again, but I am curious what others think my options are at this point.

    (First Time Poster - Of course to complain. :-)
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    The one thing Edmunds got right on in the review is the value of the Maxx. I think this will get people into a Malibu who mite not look at a Malibu otherwise. Smart!
  • I couldn't agree more that the new Malibu, Camry, and Accord don't look as good as previous models. I think the mid-90s Camry (the one that looks like a Lexus) was the nicest one produced.

    Lately, the Malibu was beginning to be recognized a reliable, teriffic, good looking family sedan that provides good value. But that old maid styling of the new one is a real turnoff. That's too bad, since the 04 is reported to offer a better ride and handling than the previous generation--which I thought was pretty good anyway.

    You got it right when you said the auto manufacturers must be using the wrong focus groups.
  • The 97 Malibu was meant for old Corsica, Celebrity, and Citation owners. But by then, most had moved on to other cars!
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    Teh 1997 Malibu was meant to be an import fighter. It was designed to take on the Taurus, Camry and Accord.
  • And a ferocious one too! I rear-ended a Corolla about a year ago. Not even a fender-bender, but the Corolla got a huge scratch on its back bumper, while my Bu had not sustained a SINGLE scratch!!! You should have seen the Corolla owner's disbelief. I told her to buy a Bu next time, so that I wouldn't have to pay to paint her bumper, which cost me about $350 CAD that time
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    The old Malibu would have been a decent import fighter if quality was better. It wasn't until recently that it finally had the recommend from places like CR. Of course by that time the car was dated.

    The new Malibu can be the car the previous car never was if quality / reliability stays high and the good reviews continue. Many people are looking for better values and this car seems to actually have the goods at a better price.
  • Well, I remember Ron Zarrella saying the 97 Malibu was "meant to satisfy our customers" and they did look to get sales from Corsica owners.

    If it was an import fighter, it was fighting 1991 Camrys, not 1997 ones.
  • I get the feeling that the Malibu wouldn't put much of a dent in Camry, Accord, Altima sales. Just like the previous Malibu, this sedan looks bland, boring with an old fashioned pushrod engine. Toyota and Honda can get away with bland, boring cars Chevy cannot. It is as if Chevy knows they can't compete with Honda and Toyota in terms of quality so they have to compete in terms of price. 200 Hp is not enough in 2004. Even Toyota's V6 is up to 225 and Accord and Altima is pushing 240+hp. In 4 cylinder form the Malibu is a downright slug. 140 Hp from a 2.2L engine. That's what Honda and Toyota produced 10 years ago.
  • rwisemrwisem Posts: 96
    On another forum the point was made that overhead cams actually pre-date pushrods. I'm not sure about that, but I do know OHC designs have been around since the 1920's. I don't think this is an issue for most drivers, who sometimes don't even know how many cylinders are under the hood of their cars.

    What really matters is function, and the Malibu V6 has the torque and seat of the pants acceleration of a Camry V6 and the fuel economy of a Camry 4. This should count for something with consumers.

    I agree that the New Malibu is not good enough to get siginificant numbers of Accord and Camry drivers out of their makes, but that would require some kind of magic at these prices. If the Caddy CTS was labeled and priced as a Malibu, maybe, but that is what it would take. I do think that if people are objective and give the Malibu a chance, many would prefer it.

    With 2,000 miles now, I really appreciate this car. it is extremely competent in its road manners and even the little details are good. I've never used better switchgear, even on a luxury make. The HVAC controls are the best I've ever used. I like the sleek "black panel" look of the gauges at night. In comparison the Accord and Camry gauges look rather garish. So far no issues at all.

    2004 Silver Malibu LT
  • logic1logic1 Posts: 2,433
    About what one can expect from your posts.

    First, look at the V6 Malibu mpgs. Second look at the preliminary reviews. The level torque curve in the engine has informed auto reviewers saying it will be close to its competitors in acceleration.

    If Toyota really was at 140 hps 10 years ago, then why is its 2.4 only producing 157 hps now? Not much progress there. Especially considering the ecotec 2.4 set to launch in the Cobalt (and probably a mid-year option for the Malibu) is at 175 hps.

    GM has two mid-market brands to support, not one. The Malibu is GM's value offering. And it is a great value. The G6 will be GM's performance offering. We shall know at the NAIAS how well the G6 stacks up to the others.

    Finally, the 'Bu is certainly as good looking as the CamCords. The Altima is certainly more dramatic, in a somewhat peurile sort of way. Altima sales peaked quickly and have levelled off. Don't know whether this is short term or a trend.
  • "It is as if Chevy knows they can't compete with Honda and Toyota in terms of quality so they have to compete in terms of price."

    The old Malibu had good quality ratings and this one has shown some promise. And push rods can be "refined" and are not going anywhere. It's another myth promoted by the ricer industry. (Same ones who think RWD and V8 cars are 'dinosaurs')

    Funny, for years these same purists slammed Detroit for 'over powered gas hogs'. Now suddenly HP #'s are the be all end all, gas mileage be damned.
  • deminindeminin Posts: 214
    A couple of days ago, I pulled in to the gas station to fill up the '03LS. A few seconds later, a guy pulled in next to me with his new Accord. We said our "howdies"..this is the country, and we talk to each other. He asked me how I liked the Malibu, and I told him great, over 12K troublefree miles so far. Then I asked him how he liked his Honda...he was primed! His was an '03 also, and he had about 10K on it, and had it in the shop 4 times so far, for various troubles. Seems like he was rather disgusted with the thing. He had just gotten it back after 3 days in the shop for transmission troubles, and he needed a shoulder to cry on. About the only positive thing he had to say was that it was all covered under warranty. He even asked, Jokingly?, if I would trade, even up. His cost over $24K, while ours was only $19K, after rebate, but after talking to him, I remain convinced that we have the better value.
This discussion has been closed.