I traded a 5 speed Escort for a used 4 cylinder Mailubu LS. Used to a sluggish car, I was expecting more of the same, but need good mileage given the number of miles I drive and the increasing price of gas. I was also unsure if I'd like the extra noise at cruise from a 4 speed auto compared to a 5-speed manual. I must say I have been impressed all round, this is NOT just another hum drum commuter car. I have rejected Malibus in the past because of engine noise. The 2004 is much better. The car handles very well indeed. The biggest suprise? Very, very quiet at 70Mph, only 2600 revs or so with power to spare. Changes gears intelligently and smoothly. I am more than pleased - great car.
CD Player keeps running after ignition turned off, too cool! Can change CD's with ignition off - Yeah! Quiet cruising on interstate - I love it! Automatic lights! Can't forget to switch them on in the dark. Great Handling. Great mileage for an automatic! 30MPG, mixed driving.
Oil dipstick cannot be reinserted using handle alone. Leg room a little short in rear, but more than ample in front seats. Would prefer a column shift auto. Gives more room for storage of items in center console. Add a manual gearbox option? Better engine sound proofing. Dipstick for tranny.