2013 Chevrolet Malibu claims segment-best ride and handling

Article by Christian Andrei, on September 19, 2011

The all-new 2013 Chevrolet Malibu sedan has been calibrated to offer ride and handling that could be rated the best in its segment. The sedan will be offered in 100 markets located in six continents. The global development team continuously refines its award-winning global architecture to match the car’s resized measurements such as wider front and rear tracks.

It also features more direct steering and advanced chassis control systems. The refinements in its architecture have resulted to a Malibu with European-style precision and comfort to match the wide range of driving conditions in North America. It offers a segment-leading stopping distance due to its use of large, ventilated front disc and solid rear disc brakes, clamped on by dual-piston front and single-piston rear aluminum calipers. Moussa said that no matter what the surface is, the driver would “feel connected to the road in the new Malibu.”

The driver would also not even be aware of the noise and road imperfections. He explained that driving the 2013 Malibu sedan would incite the same feeling that drivers get when getting behind the wheel of premium sedans. There’s a great sense of control at highway speeds and at low speeds, there’s “excellent maneuverability.”

To be used as Malibu’s standard engine, this all-new, Ecotec 2.5L engine with direct injection debuts this summer. It offers a higher horsepower than the present Malibu engine and has greater low-rpm torque for on-demand power. GM claims that the 2.5L generates 190hp (140 kW) and 180 lb.-ft. of torque (250 Nm).

Production will start in early 2012 for Chevrolet’s most fuel-efficient Malibu ever with the ECO model. GM also said that the Malibu ECO returns 26 mpg city and 38 mpg highway fuel economy due to its advanced eAssist light-electrification technology, which has low fuel consumption but doesn’t compromise drive performance. It features a lightweight lithium-ion battery and an electric motor-generator to have regenerative braking electric assist and start-stop function.

Its weight is only 65 pounds (29 kg) and it is positioned in the trunk in a way that doesn’t compromise space by much. Malibu ECO’s eAssist system comes with an Ecotec 2.4L direct-injection four-cylinder engine and next-generation six-speed automatic transmission. It has a rating of 182hp (134 kW) and 172 ft.-lbs. of torque (233 Nm).

The all-new Chevrolet Malibu has all the DNA of a Corvette and Camaro. At least, that’s how Chevrolet Brand Champion and GM Executive Director for Exterior Design Bryan Nesbitt explained it. Certainly, the design elements from the two famous supercars contributed to the “sporty” charm of the newest member of the Chevrolet family.

The latest Chevrolet Malibu has all the sporty features judging from the new spoiler, broad shoulders and wider stance from the exterior. It has a shorter wheelbase measuring only 4.5 inch wide but the 62-inch front and rear tracks are now significantly wider than before by at least 2 inches.

The exterior brings together two of Chevrolet’s signature design elements: the port grille and the HID projector headlamps. Meanwhile the iconic “bow-tie” at the front and rear are slightly bigger to match the dual-element LED at the taillights. Because of these, the new Malibu looks almost like the legendary Camaro (whether seen from near or far). The Malibu even has the 17-18-19 inch big wheels to go with it.

Meanwhile, there is also the specially-designed aero shutters that go with the new Chevrolet Malibu for its North American consumers. Without compromising style, the active and electronically controlled aero-shutters provide better aerodynamics and less fuel consumption.

The active shutter technology instinctively stops the airflow at the lower intake whenever air intake is necessary. During the process, the system helps in improving the car’s aerodynamics by redistributing the airflow towards the sides and also at the front.

To better explain how it works, the shutter automatically opens and closes depending on the speed and engine temperature. It works the same even when the car is taken out on a very hot climate or going up on a hill. Surprisingly, the same principle also applies when traveling down the freeway wherein the car doesn’t need too much engine coolant to start with.

The new Chevrolet family car is also SAE certified. It provides a highly impressive aerodynamic system almost similar to Volt’s .280-coefficient drag rating. As a result, the new Malibu’s wind drag is 60 counts lesser than its predecessor.

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