Used 1997 Chevrolet Malibu Consumer Reviews

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$1,069 - $2,751

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Pros
Cons

Could be cheaper to maintain

Would I do it again?, 01/31/2009
4dr Sedan
5 of 6 people found this review helpful

Rebuilt transmission $2,500, replaced steering rack $800. Rear brake adjusters seem not to work well on this model which causes high front brake wear. Have put two sets of rotors on and many pads on front. Have replaced the water pump twice. Due to the way the water pump is driven from the timing chain. It has a long shaft. That is subject to a high side load on the front bearing from the oil pressure activated chain tensioner .Chevy dealer here wants $800 plus to do the repair. Spring rates on the front struts are high which causes the front shocks ride at a extended height that causes early front shock failure. Replaced 3 sets. The car now has 166k and still going

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35mpg v6 + reliable!

chevyman, 05/14/2006
LS 4dr Sedan
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

1 alternator and tires/brakes in 135,000 miles! Gets 35 mpg and the new cars with V4's can't do that! Great car. Too bad used American cars are worthless, but then again, why would I ever sell it?

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She's a good car

OftheNorth, 03/09/2007
LS 4dr Sedan
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

I know lots of people have had problems with their Malibu's, but I've had nothing. The car was purchased new and has been driven in the mountains, cross country, in city commuting mode and more. Its never failed me. It's currently serving me well in the Canadian north, where it fires up every time, even in -40 weather (without being plugged in). It gets good gas mileage (~35mpg) if one goes easy on the highway, but in city traffic, the best I can usually muster is 22 mpg. Not good there! It's a comfortable roomy car, and would make for a good first auto for a new driver. It's safe, not too fast and they're cheap to get parts for (most of the time!) While I'm no Chevy fan, iIdo like this car.

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1997 Chevy Malibu LS-V6

Anthony, 11/15/2008
LS 4dr Sedan
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

I bought this car in 2002 with 90,000 miles. It now has 171,000 and I only had to replace 3 parts, altenator, water pump, and thermostat. They were really cheaps parts and I've never had to replace anything else besides tires and brakes. It's a really good car and I recommend it to anyone. I've added a cold air intake for a few extra horses and it shows

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Love it!

Runt, 11/29/2005
LS 4dr Sedan
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Not one problem EVER! Love this car and wouldn't trade it for anything. Will be my Son's car next year, that is how much I think of this car.

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Not a bad car

Cory R. Yost I, 04/09/2007
4dr Sedan
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Ever since I have had my license I have always bought GM cars. I believe in supporting the American auto companies and I have never had very many problems with them, and if I did they are cheap to fix. I recommend this car to someone that is looking for a standard and reliable vehicle!

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okay

Verrell Haywood, 04/22/2003
LS 4dr Sedan
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

A lot of issues, except with the engine and transmission.

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'97 Malibu Review

MalibuFan, 05/27/2007
LS 4dr Sedan
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

I bought the Malibu used with 40,000 miles on it. It was our second Malibu, with the first one totaled in a wreck. We drove the second Malibu to almost 140,000 miles before selling it. Overall, a good car with good gas mileage. We did replace the power steering pump, all of the front pulleys, and alternator during our 100,000 miles of use. At the time we sold it, the head gaskets were needing to be replaced (A $900 expense if done at the Chevy dealership). We would purchase another Malibu.

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Car

Chris Johnson, 03/26/2002
4dr Sedan
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Nice

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Proud Malibu owner!

JOhnny Rios, 04/01/2003
4dr Sedan
1 of 2 people found this review helpful

My 1997 Malibu I bought in Jan of 1998, with only 2k miles on her. Since then I have placed 94k miles on my 3.1 v6 motor! It been a awesome car, I do alot of trips between San Antonio, TX USA and Mexico City with is a hard 1,216 mile drive thru deserts and mountain. My Malibu has not acted up once, PLEASE BE ADVISE! you must do regular oil changes and etc.. Alot of people complain but they dont take care of their car!

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Money pit after 100,000 miles

matty, 07/18/2010
4dr Sedan
1 of 3 people found this review helpful

I bought this Malibu with 50k on it. It now has 140,000. One thing I noticed on this car was that as soon as I hit 100,000 all the nickel and dime crap would break. I had to replace all the pulleys because a bearing went bad, replaced the ignition cylinder lock which turned out that if it fails you need to buy the ignition switch as well. I try to do my own repairs this repair went from 35 bucks to 285 in parts I had to buy both. (awesome engineering, way to go gm) the build quality with gm has been crap for many years as well as the other 2 manufacturers. Things break that shouldn't. Driving down the road one day and the overhead light just came off. Come on! Really? Average.

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Only buy if you need a cheap car

K Webb, 05/23/2010
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 2 people found this review helpful

Multiple problems. Was fine for me for the two years, but buttons fall off in the climate control, intake gasket leaks, and car just isn't built great. If you only have $1500, buy it. Don't expect any money back.

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Crappy car

jescalex, 04/08/2007
4dr Sedan
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

This car has been through 2 water pumps, one timing chain, (due to a dumb mechanic!), I have had brakes put on 4 times. It wears tires quick. Everything that goes wrong is very expensive to fix. Brakes alone for this car are $150. This car is not worth any amount of money paid for it. I know it's a used car but 2 water pumps in 6 months. That's nuts!

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MalibuLemon

NoMoreChevys, 05/24/2003
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Bought a Lemon! Bought car in 97 and loved it for about six months. 3 factory alternators, power-steering replaced, power window problems, engine is noisy, Front speakers broke. Seat belts have been replaced, front lights leak, tail lights blow blulbs, too many problems to list all of them. Car has over 139,000 miles & V-6 has lost its get up and go. Will NEVER buy another. Too many problems both minor and major!

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Crappy Car

katmay, 07/07/2003
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Bought this car for what I thought was a deal at 4,000.00. In the past month have had to replace brakes, rotors, wheel bearings (twice), tire rod, and left front axel. All at only 79,000 miles. This car is junk, all I have to say is never buy american made cars and never buy as is.

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Poor quality

consultant3, 04/23/2008
4dr Sedan
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Purchased car from family/original owner at 40k. 6 cycl. 40k replaced alternator, brake pads and adjustment, battery and tires by 30k, by 70k serp belt, headliner-visor worn, a/c - Freon, now at 78k, oil pan gasket leaks, est. -up to $300. Suspension is bad, you feel every minor bump. This is the fifth and last gm for me. Imports are not perfect, but, this is terrible! I might try a Mazda?

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My97

Sean266, 04/29/2002
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

I bought this car used and have been very happy with it from the start. It is extremely reliable.I use it for work and have taken it all over LOng Island.

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My Malibu is Great!

ET, 05/08/2002
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

I drive 60-120 miles most days, and this car is great. I've had very few problems with the vehicle, and I'd recommend it to anyone.

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So many problems....

briq4, 05/31/2002
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Leaking power steering hose alternator went squeaking sway bar bushings water leaks brakes last about 10K Squeaky brakes Alignment problems Tires wore prematurely Body Panel Alighnment fit and finish is sub par

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Not buying another Chevy

WontBuy2ndMalibu, 07/04/2002
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

We bought this car used a year ago with 52k. Since then have put over $4k in maintenance. It's been in the shop 30% of the time since purchase.

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Don't buy this one!

Hansenvl61, 08/29/2002
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

This car has been nothing but problems. I will never buy another chevy, no lie.

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Great bang for the buck

love my chevy, 02/05/2008
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

This car is so fun to drive. The perfect mixture of performance and fuel economy. We bought this car with a lot of highway mileage but it was a great little car. It still is and we have only had small problems that were easily fixed and back on the road. Even the usual gasket problem didn't affect it until over 120,000 miles. I can't complain. Beats the old Ford Taurus by a long shot.

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I have enjoyed the car very much...

Chevy, 09/06/2002
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

It has been a great car! I put over 20K miles in the first year of owning it. Had a few problems, but you expect that from any car. No major problems! My car has over 80K now and we still love it.

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No problems....but one...

MS, 09/12/2002
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

This car has been good to me. It has only been in the shop once. The intake gasket was leaking coolant. I realized that this was probably happening from the 2nd year on and could have gotten it fixed under the warranty, but now have to pay $600. So warning to new Malibu owners to have it tested. Again, besides this I have no complaints, it has been a reliable car that still looks good.

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Not happy

BadMalibu, 09/23/2002
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Bought car used with 30K miles. Everything fine for the first 10K, then just fell apart. Nothing but problems - wheel bearing went, front end and motor was so loose the car would actually stall from the wires being pulled out when stopping or starting out. Ignition switch went and burned out starter at the same time. Way too many problems for a car with under 60K miles on it. Very noisy, feel every bump in the road.

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OK

Ryan111, 10/14/2002
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

This car has good power and nice design. It had a leak in the coolant system that was easilly fixed, but the engine isn't running the smoothest anymore at 78,000 mi

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Better than Ford

Dmitriy Melkumov, 10/16/2002
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

I got very good deal on it only $4000 and i didnt expect to see a lot of difference between my Ford Contour and this one. I was mistaken . This is defently a better car overall. Espessialy in build quality. I didnt have the car for a long time so i have nothing to say about reliability. Its working now at least...And if you like to listen to music change the front speakers. It cost only around $ 50.

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not to bad

huff_daddy456, 10/03/2002
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Got a 1997 in April of 2001. I found one with only 30K and got a decent aftermarket warranty.(7 years or 100K miles bumper to bumper) Thank god I paid the extra money for this warrenty because in the past year its only fun me about $200 to get over $4000 of work done. The intire front electronics system went out and I lost all my speed sensors, power everything, and the factory standard alttenator has gone out 3 times. Even though this stuff has happened I love this car. Because of the V6 and heavier car its a great ride and I have to drive 21 hours to visit family and believe me its been a life saver.

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Will never buy another Chevy.

CheyHater, 12/04/2002
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Don't ever buy one of these unless you have a lot of money and time to waste. A whole lot better to pay a couple grand more and buy and Accord or a Campry or an Altima.. or anything else.

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The Good and The Bad

Anil_V_Reddy, 12/06/2002
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

I ran into maximum problems between 43K miles and 62K miles. Steering fluid leak - 43K miles Brakes wear out - 44K miles CV joint replacement - 47K miles Gasket leakage - 52K miles Another set of brakes - 53K miles Replaced alternator - 58K miles Yet another set of brakes - 62K miles. If you don't believe me, I have all the receipts. Surprisingly, after the last bout at 62K miles, it has run very well (knock on wood) and I now have 94K miles

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One of the Best GM Products I have owned

WCHA, 01/20/2003
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

I bought this vehicle new in 1997 and have been very happy with it overall. With over 160K miles on it now it has performed well. The V6 engine and four speed automatic transmission are perfectly matched. Typical highway milage of about 29 MPG - not bad for the 170 HP V6. In typical GM style, this vehicle is not without it's problems. At 50K miles it needed a new torque converter and at about 80K a lot of new front end parts to tighten things back up. Replacement parts have lasted longer than the originals. All in all, this is still one of the best vehicles I have ever owned.

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Perhaps the worst car ever made

StevenSouthwell, 06/11/2003
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

This was the worst car I have ever owned. I purchased it brand new off the lot in 97. It was completely unreliable. I had too many problems to mention them all here. The biggest problems were electrical and the front end. Chevy did not stand behind this product and did nothing to fix the problems. They did get really good at saying "that is not covered under warranty." I spent close to $6,000 on repairs in two years of ownership. (This was a brand new car.) This is actually lower than some people I have talked to who also purchased one.

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Bad Car

boshkash, 07/23/2003
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Very Bad break system, avd A/C

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Great reliability and comfort

Blewjaye, 09/27/2003
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

this car changed gears smoothly, was quick off the line, and extremely comfortable. I am 6 feet tall and over 200lbs, and this by far was the most comfortable car in its class. Steering handled well, sound on stereo very nice, and always a crowd pleaser when parking near a large group of people.

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I love my malibu

ktcjt, 10/19/2003
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

I have enjoyed my malibu. great family vehicle. we have taken many long and short trips in this care, truck size is great, ride is smooth and comfortable. 4 adults can comfortably sit in the car. Need some work on the brake system, the glove compartment doesn't close flush, and the a/c system constantly gets leaves in the coils.

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1997 Malibu NY

CM, 04/01/2005
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

MY 97 Malibu - Great Car for the price I paid. Large enough to be comfortable and small enough for easy driving in the city. Mechanicals OK - a bit sluggish and mpg seems to be poor. Styling is adequate, not flashy. Repairs are few. Water pump most expensive repair yet. Hope to keep this for a few more years. My son could use it for college.

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chevy malibu

Richard Rights, 03/04/2003
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

car performs well. has not given me any trouble.

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Great Car

knoxdj, 12/29/2005
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Has been a great car... would recommend to anyone if it has the 4- cylinder... Do not purchase the 6- cylinder everyone I know that has one has problems after problems. Biggest thing we had to replace is the water pump. I have owned this car for 5 years and it has been the most reliable yet. Great buy!!

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1997 Malibu

roberth, 02/06/2004
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

puschased this veh at 36k miles, appently all the good had been used. had trouble with alignment on rear tires. car vibrates excessively and the road noise is terrible. car was quasi- ok for the first year we had it, put in a new battery. had the alternator replaced. last year the water pump went out. that is quite a chore!! had to remove the timing chain.would not recommend this car to others.

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dont buy

tn, 04/09/2004
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

this was the first car i ever financed,thought i was getting a great deal, within the first month my anti- theft system locked up, and my power window/lock switch broke. i went through 2 sets of brakes, one day it wouldnt start, had it towed to chevy dealership were it sat for 4 days i couldnt get them to look at it. my husband ended up fixing it in the parking lot himself. 1 week before i traded it the emegency brake got stuck i could still drive it but every time i pulled out it made the dinging sound. the bad part is i only owned it 1 year.

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Steer clear of these!

TeeSorter, 05/09/2004
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

I have had my Malibu for only 2 years, and in that two years, it has been nothing but problem after problem. I bought the car with only 68,000 miles on it. The dealer I bought it from actually put about 1500 bucks into it during the first 6 months I had it (part of the selling agreement to fix some of the things)....I hate this car, and will never own another Chevy after this. Every fluid the car has in it, other then the brake fluid has leaked at some point. I just received a recall on it. The driver's side power window works when it feels like it.

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Fixer upper!

stranded in PITT, 05/19/2004
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

LOTS of things broke. In for linkage work throughout entire first year. Elec problems; leaves in fan - several blown switches; wipers severed from frame; air blows in through handles; tires do NOT HOLD air (alum rims???);

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Never buy the 1st model year of anything

iluvtigr, 07/17/2004
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

As a long time GM owner,(11 to date),I was looking for a reliable, four- door "familymobile". Based upon Motor Trend "Car of the Year" status and use of a drive-train with a solid history I bought the first model year of the resurected Malibu nameplate. BIG mistake! Eleven dealer visits during warranty for various finish and mechanical items. The following items replaced OUT of warranty: Head gaskets (twice), ignition switch, A/C control head, ball joints & bushings. Nine sets of front brake pads and six rotors in 80,000 miles. It's time for a new car, but, sadly, this time it will be an import.

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A LEMON!!

Debs24, 09/25/2004
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

i owned my car for seven years. and unfortunatlly its paid and i cant buy a new one.but these are the things i have to share. had it two weeks the steering wheel harness shorted,2 sets of control arms,2 alternators,2 manifold gaskets,control board for tail lights,main computer had to b replaced,tracking bar was bent,2battery's,serpentine belt, now tensioner chatters,a/c control head 3 times, paint chipping the room,doesnt hold alignment,a/c doesnt function right,the first 6 months we had it we had to replace half of the interoir trim and seat cloth,now we have a piston slap,radiator cap was craked,4 sets of brakes,2 sets of rotors,leaves stuck in blower

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Don't Buy First Year Models or Chevys

msmiley, 09/23/2004
LS 4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

I bought this car in March of 1997 and had problems with it ever since. Let's see...3 lower control arms (they rattled), ABS sensor bad, #1 fuel injector bad, altenator quit, brakes wore prematurely, headlights fogged over, brake pedal pad fell off, rear window seal blew out, interior panelling came off, turn signal wouldn't cancell after making a left turn(took two dealership visits to convinve them it was actually malfucntioning), and numerous other problems. This car is junk, not even rental fleet worthy. I got a divorce and she got this hunk of junk, thank goddness. I bought an import which now has over 35,000 miles on it with NO problems.

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1997 malibu

r m, 10/28/2004
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

My 97 Malibu is still running fine - had to replace water pump at 22000 mi- and window control for driver side. Car is OK

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I will miss it!

Sonia Q, 04/01/2005
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

My very first car. The re-introduction of the classic Malibu, great looking body style, and good price got my attention. Since purchasing in '97, I put on 78,000 miles on it. Although it was 4 cyl. and no frills, it fulfilled its purpose to get me around but it also looked stylish (I have gold color). The car never left me stranded BUT, for the last 7K miles, I've had a water pump leak problem.

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Malibu: practically trouble free car

asucincyoh, 08/09/2005
4dr Sedan
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

I bought my 1997 Mailibu in April of 2001. It had 73,000 miles on her. I had no vehicle trouble on any of these trips. My only complaint about the car is the fuel economy. For a 4 cylinder the gas mileage isn't that great. The most I ever got out of a tank of gas was 367mi on 15 gal tank. But dependibility wise this is the best car I have ever owned. The only part to ever break on the car was the altenator. That broke at about 90k mi. And it cost about $100 to replace by myself. But in 135k that was the only part to break. I would recomend a Mailibu to anyone who wants a dependable car. Also, the power is decent and it is fun to drive for a four door sedan.

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