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CAR OF THE MONTH April 2008

2008 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ Review

The Car You Want This Year A three-quarter front view of a dark gray 2008 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ

In short: A value-packed American sedan.

The General has unleashed all the artillery to win each battle, and hopefully the war, in preserving its utmost supremacy in the car world. Many new models in General Motors' multiple nameplate lineup are hitting the road, combining hybrid and flex-fuel technologies, and even testing hydrogen concepts. We are also seeing a lot of influence from the European division; the Opel model, for example, is being incorporated into the U.S. contributions for Saturn with the Aura and the Astra.

Views of the front interior and engine of the 2008 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ

There is an edgy, dynamic look to the car, and its proportions are well-balanced with plenty of room in both the front and back seats. Our tester was the top-of-the-line LTZ with a peppy V6 engine coupled with paddle shifts. It won’t be the winner of the skid pad competition, but for the overall legal daily driving experience, and then some, the Malibu will do. We were extremely surprised by the luxurious and, at the same time, sporty interior trim. The wood trim came with incorporated surround lights as well as multi-toned and textured leather seats. The Malibu will have a more conservative insurance premium than an import. It is packed with value (base LS models start at $19,995) making it the car you will want this year.

Read a review of the 2006 Chevrolet Malibu Sedan LTZ

Warranty/Service: 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty; 5-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty; 5-year/100,000-mile Roadside Assistance Program.

A three-quarter rear view of a dark gray 2008 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ


QUICK SHEET
Base Price: $27,445 /As tested: $28,045

Technical Specifications

Vehicle type: front-engine, front-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door sedan

Engine: 3.6-liter DOHC V6
Horsepower: 252 hp @ 6,300 rpm
Torque: 251 lb-ft @ 3,200 rpm
Transmission: 6-speed automatic

Curb weight: 3,649 lbs
Wheelbase: 112.3 in
Length/Width/Height: 191.8/70.3/57.1 in
Turning circle: 40.4 ft

Brakes: vented disc on front, solid disc on rear, ABS front and rear
Suspension:
independent front and rear

Traction: traction control, vehicle stability control

0-60 mph:
n/a
Top Speed: n/a

EPA City: 17 mpg
EPA Highway: 26 mpg

Safety: dual-stage front air bags, head curtain side-impact air bags in front and rear, seat-mounted thorax air bags in front, OnStar Gen 7

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Photography: AlphaMedia

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