Upon being completely redesigned last year with a longer wheelbase affording more rear seat legroom, the Chevy Malibu enters the 2017 model year with a handful of updates.
Those choosing the top-of-the-line Malibu Premier benefit from a new 9-speed automatic transmission, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and Teen Driver technologies have been added to all but the lowest trim level, and Malibu 1LT customers can now opt for a Sport Package, replete with 18” wheels and a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob.
The Malibu Premier runs standard with the high-output 2.0-liter turbo-4. The 3 lesser trims – the L, LS and 1LT – are powered by the new 1.5-liter turbo and these are the Malibu models to shop if 30mpg is of importance. Those who want V6-level performance will turn to the 250-horsepower motor instead which is impressively refined and robust with a quick acting 258 pound-feet of torque. Regular gas is OK but premium is recommended, rated at 26mpg in combined driving.
The new Teen Driver feature is the first in the industry with a built-in component that lets parents view on a display how their teenager drove the vehicle. To the delight of occupants, there are 2 USB ports in the front and 2 more in the rear plus a standard outlet. And who doesn’t love the 4G Wi-Fi hotspot?
Pricing starts at $22,555 while the lavish Malibu Premier checks in at $31,850.