2012 Chevrolet Malibu vs. Its Competition

2012 Chevrolet Malibu 4-door Sedan LTZ w/1LZ Angular Front Exterior View
Bengt Halvorson Bengt Halvorson Senior Editor

The Chevy Malibu is in a dogfight with a group of the most popular passenger cars on sale in the U.S.

The Ford Fusion and Nissan Altima tend toward the sporty end of the pack, with excellent handling for the class and some of the top reliability marks, too.

The Honda Accord is a bit bigger than the Malibu, but it's one of the rarer recent Hondas to avoid major mistakes in its interior trim and packaging.

The Toyota Camry is new this year, and it's unrelentingly dull, with just some crisper sheetmetal and dash lines to distinguish it from past models.

The newest kids on the block, the Hyundai Sonata and Kia Optima, have great packaging, exuberant styling, and rock-bottom price tags that include Bluetooth and USB ports, things you have to pay to get in most of these other sedans.

2012 Chevrolet Malibu 4-door Sedan LTZ w/1LZ Angular Front Exterior View2012 Chevrolet Malibu
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2012 Ford Fusion2012 Ford Fusion
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2012 Hyundai Sonata 4-door Sedan 2.4L Auto Limited Side Exterior View2012 Hyundai Sonata
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2012 Nissan Altima 4-door Sedan I4 CVT 2.5 S Side Exterior View2012 Nissan Altima
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2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid2012 Toyota Camry
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Quick Specs
It's one of GM's best-executed products of the past few years, and even in its final year on sale, the 2012 Chevy Malibu still ranks highly for its spacious cabin, smooth performance and handsome silhouette.
The 2012 Ford Fusion stays at the top of its game, especially as a Hybrid, with perky handling and its cut-above looks.
After more than a decade on the market, the latest Hyundai Sonata's an overnight success--thanks to great gas mileage, grabby styling, and exceptional value for the dollar.
The 2012 Nissan Altima isn't as roomy as the newest mid-offerings, but as a coupe or as a sedan, it's one of the best-looking and most sporty mid-sizers.
The redesigned 2012 Toyota Camry remains the most conservative-looking pick among mid-size sedans, but if you want comfort, value, and frugality above all else, it's probably just your style.
MSRP From    
Gas Mileage    
17 MPG City / 33 MPG Hwy17 MPG City / 36 MPG Hwy22 MPG City / 39 MPG Hwy18 MPG City / 32 MPG Hwy21 MPG City / 39 MPG Hwy
Gas 4-CylGas I4Gas I4Gas I4Gas I4
EPA Class    
MidsizeMid-Size SedanLarge CarsMidsizeMidsize Car
Style Name    
4-Door Sedan LS w/1LS4-Door Sedan S FWD4-Door Sedan 2.4L Manual GLS4-Door Sedan I4 CVT 2.54-Door Sedan I4 Automatic L (GS)
Front Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity    
Passenger Doors    
Body Style    
4 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan
Automatic w/manual shiftManualManualContinuously Variable RatioAutomatic w/Manual Shift
Detailed Spec Comparison
 2012 Chevrolet Malibu vs. 2012 Ford Fusion2012 Chevrolet Malibu vs. 2012 Hyundai Sonata2012 Chevrolet Malibu vs. 2012 Nissan Altima2012 Chevrolet Malibu vs. 2012 Toyota Camry