June 21, 2017

Chevy has hit it out of the park with the all new 2017 Malibu

Stunning design - Here is what Edmunds States about the all new redesigned Chevrolet Malibu.
New for 2017
The 2017 Chevrolet Malibu gets Teen Driver, Android Auto, and Apple CarPlay added on the LS and LT models. A new nine-speed automatic transmission replaces the old eight-speed unit on the Premier trim level, which is equipped with the 2.0-liter turbo-four. Three new exterior colors, Arctic Blue Metallic, Pepperdust Metallic, and Cajun Red Tintcoat have been added. A new Sport package option is also new but will be available at a later time.
Vehicle Summary
Slotting between the compact Cruze and the full-size Impala, the Chevrolet Malibu is a front-drive midsize sedan that features an all four-cylinder engine lineup and a hybrid. Learn about the Malibu Hybrid here.
Overview
Standard on the 2017 Malibu is a 1.5-liter turbo-four good for 160 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque paired to a six-speed automatic. A 2.0-liter turbo-four with 250 hp and 258 lb-ft is available only in the Premier trim and comes paired with a new nine-speed automatic. EPA fuel economy ratings are 27/36 mpg city/highway for the 1.5-liter and 22/33 mpg for the 2.0-liter. Trunk space is generous at 15.8 cubic feet and can be expanded via the split-folding rear seats.
Chevrolet’s MyLink infotainment system comes in two variants in the 2017 Malibu, a base level one with a seven-inch touchscreen and an upgraded version with navigation and an eight-inch touchscreen. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto come standard in both versions. Other standard and optional features include a rearview camera, a Bose premium audio system, heated/ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel, remote start, 4G LTE connectivity, and leather upholstery.
Safety
NHTSA gave the 2017 Malibu a five-star overall safety rating (out of a possible five stars). In IIHS testing, a 2016 model received the 2016 Top Safety Pick+ score after it received a Good rating on all crash tests (Good is the highest possible score). In the IIHS’ front crash prevention test, the Malibu avoided a 12-mph impact and reduced the speed of a 25-mph collision by 24 mph, allowing it to receive a Superior rating (Superior is the highest possible rating).
Available active safety features come as part of the Driver Confidence package and in the Premier grade it can be complemented by the Driver Confidence package II. Features included are automatic forward emergency braking, pedestrian detection, Intellibeam automatic high beam control, front and rear park assist, side blind zone alert, lane change alert, lake keeping assist, following distance indicator, forward collision warning, rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control, and semi-automatic parking assist.
What We Think
In a 2016 Malibu 1.5T First Test, we said that with the base engine, the car’s performance is middling and the low rolling resistance tires hurt its handling and braking performance. In real-world driving, the tiny turbo-four offers decent power and it rides well. Interior quality on lower trim levels, on the other hand, is lacking especially compared to the more upscale feeling cabins of high trim variants of the Malibu.
In a 2016 First Test, we noted that despite being slightly down on power and torque, the Malibu 2.0T is one of the quicker midsize sedans and retains its comfortable ride even with larger 19-inch alloy wheels. The car’s interior is also more spacious than the car it replaces and now has more legroom.
Cool Fact
The Teen Driver feature lets parents limit feature availability and set driving boundaries for their teenage driver.
Key Competitors
Thinking about going electric, check out this great review on the 2017 Chevy Bolt https://www.digitaltrends.com/car-reviews/2017-chevrolet-bolt-ev-review/
Will you use it much? Not likely. The digital gauge cluster gives you the same information with less invasiveness and is in your line of sight. But the screen does give you a summary of your usage once you’ve stopped, allowing you to adjust your driving behavior accordingly. There’s little more to it than that, so it’s a good thing the Bolt EV is Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible, allowing you to access to your preferred music apps as well as giving you in-dash navigation.
You’ll spend a lot of time checking the digital gauge cluster that displays your estimated range and power drain. You’d be surprised to see how much this influences your driving. Getting the Bolt to recoup some spent miles through coasting or braking will be your new favorite game.
INTERIOR FIT & FINISH
The Bolt’s interior may be spartan, but ample room makes it comfortable, at least. The beautiful thing about EV architecture is that it needs less space for components, so after Chevy laid down the batteries in the floor, the final two were stacked in the back to make the rear seats. Specifically, you get 39.7-inch and 41.6-inch of headroom/legroom in the front, and 37.9/36.5-inch of headroom/legroom in the back. This translates to plenty of room for four passengers. It allows for nearly 17 cubic feet of cargo volume. During my test run, I fit the entirety of a large supermarket run in the back without any of it spilling to the rear seats.
RANGE ANXIETY
On paper, picking up the Bolt EV and taking it home should’ve been fine. 35 miles or so shouldn’t impact the 216 miles of range I had on tap. The trouble was, it was cold and rainy, and it really slowed me down. First off, the Bolt’s meat-and-potatoes is an electric motor that whirls up 266 pound-feet of torque and 150kW, or 200 horsepower. It sends this to the front wheels and doesn’t mess around when doing so. Torque comes down instantly if you decide to flatten the throttle, launching the car from 0 to 60 in less than seven seconds, according to Chevy.
We’ve passed the period when all-electric cars were an oddity, but EVs aren’t fully commonplace. Tesla is no longer an upstart but an established automaker, and yet its offerings are still too upscale to make them regular sites around town. Other automakers have expanded their lines to offer their own fully-electric models, but even those have since been limited to short-range urban runabouts.
Chevrolet is the first to the table with the Chevrolet Bolt, an EV that has long range, but without the boutique price. Does it succeed? I took the plucky EV home to find out, starting with a drive from New York city to Long Island that would trigger some heavy range anxiety.
WHAT’S NEW
The Bolt EV is an all-new fully electric vehicle from Chevrolet that hopes to hit that EV sweet spot between long range and affordability. Specifically, the Bolt looks to provide an EPA-estimated range of 238 miles while remaining attainable for less than $30,000, after a $7,500 federal tax credit.
TRIM LEVELS & FEATURES
The Bolt comes in two trims: LT and Premiere. LT will net you stuff like 17-inch painted aluminum wheels, HID headlamps, 10 airbags, a 10.2-inch MyLink touch screen, two front USB ports, XM Radio, and seating for five.
Spring for Premiere, and you net the above plus nifty extras that include heated seats, collision alert, lane keep assist/departure warning, and an extra two USB ports for the rear seats. Chevy’s rear camera mirror is also available in this trim. This is the function that allows drivers to flip between a regular rear view mirror and a wide-angle rear camera display right inside the mirror casing.
TECHNOLOGY OVERVIEW
The Bolt’s modest interior is home to a 10.2-inch touchscreen, which lets passengers access the car’s MyLink apps. For the most part this consists of different audio sources, the phone you’ve paired to the vehicle, and a screen for your battery consumption. While you’re on the go, this will give you an idea of how economical you’re being with your driving. A graphic shows the Bolt ether expending juice or regenerating power.
Will you use it much? Not likely. The digital gauge cluster gives you the same information with less invasiveness and is in your line of sight. But the screen does give you a summary of your usage once you’ve stopped, allowing you to adjust your driving behavior accordingly. There’s little more to it than that, so it’s a good thing the Bolt EV is Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible, allowing you to access to your preferred music apps as well as giving you in-dash navigation.
You’ll spend a lot of time checking the digital gauge cluster that displays your estimated range and power drain. You’d be surprised to see how much this influences your driving. Getting the Bolt to recoup some spent miles through coasting or braking will be your new favorite game.
INTERIOR FIT & FINISH
The Bolt’s interior may be spartan, but ample room makes it comfortable, at least. The beautiful thing about EV architecture is that it needs less space for components, so after Chevy laid down the batteries in the floor, the final two were stacked in the back to make the rear seats. Specifically, you get 39.7-inch and 41.6-inch of headroom/legroom in the front, and 37.9/36.5-inch of headroom/legroom in the back. This translates to plenty of room for four passengers. It allows for nearly 17 cubic feet of cargo volume. During my test run, I fit the entirety of a large supermarket run in the back without any of it spilling to the rear seats.