2009 Chevrolet Malibu Sedan Review | Edmunds.com

2009 Chevrolet Malibu Sedan

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
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Chevrolet Malibu Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.4 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 4-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 169 hp @ 6400 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 22/30 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats No

Review of the 2009 Chevrolet Malibu

  • With newly available Bluetooth connectivity, standard stability control and the widespread adoption of the six-speed automatic for four-cylinder models, the already respected 2009 Chevy Malibu makes a stronger case for itself in the midsize sedan arena.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Strong performance from V6, excellent ride and handling balance, roomy cabin, comfortable seats, high crash test scores, solid fit and finish.

  • Cons

    Some subpar cabin materials, no rear center armrest, fussy manual-shift feature, a few key luxury features are unavailable.

  • What's New for 2009

    The 2009 Chevrolet Malibu undergoes a number of key changes. The six-speed automatic becomes more widely available with the four-cylinder engine, and the four is now standard instead of the V6 on the top-level LTZ trim. Bluetooth connectivity also debuts as an option, while stability control becomes standard across the lineup. Power-adjustable pedals are no longer offered.

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Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 22
  • cty
/
  • 30
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
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What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews



Best car i've ever owned

by on
Vehicle: 2009 Chevrolet Malibu LS 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 4A)

I have had many brand new cars but this is the best. in the last five years I have driven my 2009 Malibu 138000 miles and not one problem. Not one. I replaced my tires and brakes at 75000 miles and the rear brakes still had 1/2 their life left. Everyday I thank my lucky stars for buying the Malibu and would buy another in a heartbeat.




Couldn't wait to get rid

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Vehicle: 2009 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 6A)

Problems (so far): Plastic rear bumper cover coming off -$350 to fix. Rear Passenger window not closing -$400. Factory Radio 'broken' does not work -$400. A/C, Fan will not blow in some settings -$600 Power Steering Pump Seal requires replacement -$1300.



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

No armrest padding

by on
Vehicle: 2009 Chevrolet Malibu Fleet 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 4A)

My 2009 Chevrolet Malibu hybrid has no armrest padding from the manufacturer. As a result, I have bursitis on one elbow. It also has Onstar but there is no compass in the car.




Overall

by on
Vehicle: 2009 Chevrolet Malibu LT2 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 6A)

I am very disappointed in the trunk opening and very, very disappointed in the gasmileage for a car rated at 48 mpg that gives something between 25 & 35 mpg depending on the length of drive and weather conditions. Why no driving lights on the LT2 model?



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Rims

by on
Vehicle: 2009 Chevrolet Malibu LS 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 4A)

I agree with the rims issue.Mine have made noise from the beginning so we had to take one off already and it was bent but still making a noise. am also very disappointed on the gas mileage.I can't seem to keep gas in it and I only drive around 10 miles daily. anyone else with this problem.




Great car! very reliable

by on
Vehicle: 2009 Chevrolet Malibu LS 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 4A)

I have had my car for 3 years and I have over 98,000 miles. I have had no problems with the car, it's been extremely reliable. I really enjoy owning an American product!



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Full 2009 Chevrolet Malibu Review

What's New for 2009

The 2009 Chevrolet Malibu undergoes a number of key changes. The six-speed automatic becomes more widely available with the four-cylinder engine, and the four is now standard instead of the V6 on the top-level LTZ trim. Bluetooth connectivity also debuts as an option, while stability control becomes standard across the lineup. Power-adjustable pedals are no longer offered.

Introduction

In sports and the entertainment industry, there is a phenomenon known as the sophomore jinx. It's that inexplicable occurrence when an athlete who was a standout his rookie year bombs the next season, or when a movie's sequel doesn't come close to the excellence of the original. Thankfully, the 2009 Chevrolet Malibu isn't another Matrix Reloaded.

Though just entering its sophomore year, the Malibu sees a number of changes far beyond the gingerbread upgrades that are typical early on in a model cycle. Performance and fuel mileage for the four-cylinder models are increased by the six-speed automatic transmission; although this powertrain could be had late in the '08 model year, it's available on all trims this year except the base LS. Stability control becomes standard across the board, and available Bluetooth connectivity allows hands-free cell phone use. Some shuffling of package features, the fitment of 17-inch wheels to the LS and the deletion of the power-adjustable pedals option complete the round of changes.

What haven't changed are the Malibu's many likable qualities, such as a roomy, attractive cabin, nicely balanced ride and handling characteristics and a pair of peppy engines. The latter workhorses consist of an inline-4 making a respectable 169 horsepower and a torquey 252-hp V6. These competent underpinnings are wrapped in a body that looks more "premium sedan" than "rental car." Apart from the somewhat controversial but distinctive nose, the Malibu sports clean, classy lines, with tight panel gaps and just enough chrome trim to impart a high-end appearance.

The downsides to the Malibu are minor and few. Although the interior boasts an upscale design and solid build quality, there are still a few cheap plastic pieces here and there. And though OnStar offers a "Turn-by-Turn" navigation feature, there is no traditional nav system available.

Overall, the well-rounded 2009 Chevrolet Malibu earns our respect. It faces some tough rivals in the midsize family sedan game, such as the Ford Fusion, Honda Accord, Mazda 6, Nissan Altima and Toyota Camry. But thanks to its useful updates for 2009, the Malibu seems to have avoided that old sophomore jinx, making this handsome sedan a stronger-performing and more entertaining pick than it was last year.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2009 Chevrolet Malibu is a midsize sedan that comes in four trim levels: LS, 1LT, 2LT and LTZ. The LS comes with 17-inch alloy wheels, keyless entry, full power accessories, air-conditioning and OnStar. A six-speaker CD audio system with satellite radio and an auxiliary audio jack is also standard.

The 1LT adds color-keyed side mirrors and side moldings, a chrome exhaust outlet, steering-wheel-mounted audio controls and carpeted floor mats. The 2LT upgrades further with polished wheels, remote engine start, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, a power driver seat and heated front seats.

The luxury-laden Malibu LTZ adds silver grille inserts (versus black), foglamps, LED taillights, 18-inch alloy wheels, an upgraded audio system with a CD changer and eight speakers, leather seating and a power passenger seat.

Options are grouped into a handful of packages that allow many of the higher trims' features to be added to the lower trims. There's also a rear power package that includes a 110-volt AC outlet (behind the center console) and a manual rear sunshade. A few key luxury features that are available on many other family sedans, such as a navigation system and dual-zone climate control, can't be had on any Malibu, although OnStar does offer "Turn-by-Turn" audio navigation assistance.

Powertrains and Performance

All Malibu trims come standard with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 169 hp and 160 pound-feet of torque. With LS and 1LT trims, it's paired with a four-speed automatic transmission that sends power to the front wheels. On the 2LT and LTZ trims, the 2.4 comes with a six-speed automatic with manual shift control. The six-speed is optional on the 1LT.

Those who choose the 2LT or LTZ trims and want more power can opt for the 3.6-liter V6 (252 hp and 251 lb-ft of torque) matched to the six-speed automatic.

Although the Malibu is no lightweight at about 3,500 pounds, the four-cylinder version provides adequate performance, with the 0-60 sprint taking less than 10 seconds. The V6, on the other hand, is downright quick, running to 60 mph in just 6.6 seconds.

EPA fuel economy estimates range from 17 mpg city/26 mpg highway and 20 mpg combined for the six-cylinder Malibu to 22/32/25 for the four-cylinder/six-speed automatic powertrain.

Safety

Antilock disc brakes, stability/traction control, front-seat side airbags and side curtain airbags are standard on all trims.

In government crash testing, the 2009 Chevrolet Malibu earned five stars (the highest rating possible) in both frontal- and side-impact tests. In the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety frontal-offset crash test, the Malibu scored a "Good" rating, again the highest possible.

Interior Design and Special Features

A dual-cowl dash design somewhat reminiscent of a 1960s Corvette highlights the cabin, while much-improved materials and build quality put this Malibu light-years ahead of prior models. The controls for the audio and climate-control systems are simple to use. Contrasting piping on the seats, once the hallmark of ultra-luxury cars, is seen on LTZ models, while all Malibus can be had with tasteful two-tone color schemes. All trims also feature an impressively quiet ride, thanks to extensive sound insulation and acoustic-laminated front windows.

With its long wheelbase, the Malibu offers generous amounts of legroom for rear passengers, though the seat lacks a center armrest and the sloping roof line may impinge on headroom for tall folks.

Driving Impressions

Striking an excellent balance between handling and ride, the 2009 Chevy Malibu's chassis provides confident cornering along with a smooth ride on broken pavement. The cabin is impressively hushed at highway speeds, and seat comfort and support are superb, making the Malibu ideal for long trips. With a wide range of adjustment, the driver seat provides a good driving position, but some drivers found the pedals awkwardly placed and the steering wheel too large in diameter.

The four- and six-cylinder models feature different steering systems (electric and hydraulic assist, respectively), meaning that the driving experience differs greatly depending on the selected engine. We usually dislike the overly artificial feel of electric power steering systems, but in the Malibu's case, several of our editors actually prefer the four-cylinder car.

In terms of power, the relatively fuel-efficient four-cylinder should prove sufficient for most buyers, especially when matched to the six-speed automatic. The V6 provides considerably more gusto, though getting the six-speed automatic to downshift (as for a quick freeway passing maneuver) requires a deliberate foot to the throttle -- a side effect of the fuel-mileage-minded programming.

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Talk About The 2009 Malibu

2009 Chevrolet Malibu Discussions See all Started By

e_net_rider
e_net_rider
09-17-2009
09 Malibu LT2 I-4 AT-6 less than 500miles....


tboom13
tboom13
08-26-2008
Has anyone heard/seen what is in store for the 2009 Impala. I am particularly interested to know if it will have automatic climate control. The 08 Malibu has automatic climate control and it seems o...


beleni85
beleni85
03-01-2013
I have a 2010 Chevy Malibu...Dealership is saying throttle body needs to be replaced but because my car is a 2010 its not covered by warranty... Stated if it was a 2009 or 2011 it would be covered... ...



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