The 2009 Chevrolet Malibu comes in three different trim levels--LS, LT, and LTZ. Standard on each model is a 169-hp, 2.4L 4-cylinder engine, while a 252-hp, 3.6L V6 with variable valve timing is optional on the LT and LTZ trims. Four-cylinder LS and LT models get a 4-speed automatic transmission, though a 6-speed automatic is optional the LT and standard on the LTZ. With the four-cylinder engine, the Malibu achieves respectable fuel-efficiency ratings of 22 mpg city, 30 mpg highway.
Inside and out, the Malibu's lines are modern and attractive, with great attention to detail. The flowing instrument panel forms a "dual cockpit" design. LTZ models get front fog lamps and attention-getting LED rear lamps.
With its four-wheel independent suspension and either 17- or 18-inch wheels, the Malibu offers a smooth ride and sporty handling response, due to a standard rear stabilizer bar. Four-cylinder models have electric variable-assist power steering while V6 models have hydraulic power steering.
Interiors in LS and LT Malibus are cloth, while the LTZ offers standard leather seating. Gauges are displayed with distinctive blue backlighting. Available ambient lighting backlights the center console and door pulls, and the overhead console in LTZ models bathes the center console area with LED light.
All Malibu models, including the base LS, come quite well equipped, with cruise control, remote keyless entry, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel and an MP3-compatible CD audio system. Top LTZ models include heated front seats, steering-wheel-mounted audio controls, a 6-CD stereo and a remote starter system. XM satellite radio is available on all Malibus. A power sunroof is optional across the range, and the upgraded stereo is optional on LS and LT models.
Front passenger airbags, head-curtain side airbags covering front and rear outboard seats, and seat-mounted thorax-protecting air bags are standard for all models. Additionally StabiliTrak electronic stability control is now standard across the Malibu range, and it incorporates brake assist and traction control.
The Malibu is also available as a gasoline/electric hybrid. With the 2.4L Ecotec 4-cylinder engine plus an electric motor starter/generator system, the hybrid powertrain is rated at 164 horsepower altogether. A sophisticated control system automatically shuts off the engine when stopped, then restarts it seamlessly when taking off from a stoplight. The hybrid system then recaptures the energy lost during coasting and braking, storing it in the battery. Hybrid models also get a unique gauge cluster that relays information about the system's operation. Hybrid models achieve EPA fuel-efficiency ratings of 24 city, 32 highway.
The Malibu Hybrid includes standard air conditioning, the same MP3-compatible CD stereo found in LS and LT trim, power locks, keyless entry, tilt steering column and, new for 2009, 17-inch alloy wheels.
GM's OnStar system is standard on all Malibu models.
Glass, acoustic, laminated front-side and windshield
Glass, Solar-Ray light-tinted
Wipers, front intermittent, variable, speed-sensitive
License plate bezel, chrome, rear
Door handles, body-color
Audio system, AM/FM stereo with CD player and MP3 playback seek-and-scan, digital clock, auto-tone control, Radio Data System (RDS), automatic volume, TheftLock and auxiliary input jack
Audio system feature, 6-speaker system
XM Radio XM Radio includes 3 trial months of service. XM turns your world on with commercial-free music channels from Rock to Jazz, Country to Classical, Latin Pop to Hip Hop, and virtually everything in between, all in amazing digital sound. Turn on your favorite Sports with every Major League Baseball game from Opening Day until the World Series, NHL Hockey, the PGA TOUR and college football and basketball. Plus XM brings you the biggest names in news and talk, outrageous comedy, award-winning family programming -- wherever you go from coast to coast. Exclusive live concerts, Oprah & Friends, Radio Disney, and so much more. Find what turns you on (Available only in the 48 contiguous United States. Required $12.95 monthly subscription sold separately after 3 trial months. Visit gm.xmradio.com for more details.)
Seats, front bucket with Custom Cloth reclining seatbacks and adjustable outboard head restraints
Seat, rear 60/40 split-folding seatback
Seat adjuster, driver power vertical height
Seat adjuster, driver manual lumbar control
Console, floor with floor shifter, integral sliding armrest and dual storage compartment
Steering column, tilt and telescopic
Steering wheel, 3-spoke with mounted cruise controls
Instrumentation, analog with speedometer, engine temperature, fuel, tachometer and PRNDL
Driver Information Center with driver customization, warning messages and vehicle information including outside temperature display, trip odometer and programmable menu functions
Windows, power with driver Express-Down and rear passenger lockout
Door locks, power programmable with lockout protection and delayed locking
Remote Keyless Entry, enhanced with remote start enable
Cruise control, electronic with set and resume speed
Trunk release, power, interior
Theft-deterrent alarm system, content theft alarm
Theft-deterrent system, vehicle, PASS-Key III+
Air conditioning, single-zone manual
Defogger, rear-window electric
Cup holders, dual front and rear
Power outlets, 2 auxiliary
Mirror, inside rearview manual day/night
Visors, driver and front passenger vanity mirrors, covered
Lighting, interior with front reading lights
Map pockets, driver and front passenger seatbacks
StabiliTrak, stability control system with brake assist, includes Traction Control
Daytime Running Lamps
Air bags, dual-stage frontal, and thorax side-impact, driver and front passenger, and head curtain side-impact, front and rear outboard seating positions includes Passenger Sensing System (Head curtain side air bags are designed to help reduce the risk of head and neck injuries to front and rear seat occupants on the near side of certain side-impact collisions. Always use safety belts and the correct child restraints for your child's age and size. Even in vehicles equipped with air bags and the Passenger Sensing System, children are safer when properly secured in a rear seat. Never place a rear-facing infant restraint in the front seat of any vehicle equipped with an active frontal air bag. See the vehicle's Owner's Manual and child safety seat instructions for more safety information.)
OnStar, 1-year of Directions and Connections plan. Includes the innovative easy to use Turn-by-Turn Navigation services which provide voice-guided directions (where available). Also includes Automatic Crash Notification, Automatic Notification of Air Bag Deployment, Stolen Vehicle Location Assistance, a link to all Emergency Services, Roadside Assistance, Remote Door Unlock, OnStar Vehicle Diagnostics, Hands-Free Calling, AccidentAssist, Remote Horn and Lights, Information and Convenience Services, and Driving Directions (OnStar services require vehicle electrical system (including battery), wireless service and GPS satellite signals to be available and operating for features to function properly. OnStar acts as a link to existing emergency service providers. Stolen Vehicle Location Assistance and Remote door Unlock success varies with conditions. OnStar Vehicle Diagnostic available on most 2004 MY and newer GM vehicles. Diagnostic capability varies by model. Turn-by-Turn Navigation requires ABS and is not available in certain areas. Visit onstar.com or call 1-888-466-7827 for system limitations and details. For a list of vehicles with Automatic Crash Notification visit onstar.com.)
Safety belts, 3-point, all seating positions includes front seat pretensioners
LATCH system (Lower Anchors and Top tethers for CHildren) for child safety seats