2009 Chevrolet MalibuEnlarge Photo
One of America's strongest mainstream mid-size sedans, the Chevrolet Malibu, is confirmed to be getting ready for a revamp both inside and out for 2012. The updated car will feature new lines, new powertrains, and better fuel efficiency.
The three are all related, however, and not just piecemeal upgrades. The new look is somewhat reminiscent of a softened, smoother Kia Forte according to our own Marty Padgett, on the ground at the GM event this morning. Given the Forte's forward-looking style, that might not be a bad thing.
But it's also more aerodynamic and therefore more fuel-efficient. The new powertrains have been designed with efficiency in mind as well, all leading to a BMW EfficientDynamics-like (or even GM's own XFE, or Xtra Fuel Economy) package that combines many small elements to form a greater sum.
Inside, the car also gets a refreshing with new integrated air vents, an updated dash and a more refined navigation system with a larger, clearer screen.
Due for the 2012 calendar year, meaning most likely a debut mid-year as a 2013 model, the new Malibu would serve as an update to the seventh generation vehicle debuted in 2008.
That makes for a rather thorough mid-cycle refresh of an already successful and well-liked car, but initial takes on the styling of the preview shown in Detroit today are positive, so it could just be that GM is improving on an already good thing.