While many people thought that Toyota and Honda had taken over the mid-size family sedan market with models like the Camry and the Accord, Chevrolet surprised the whole market with the Malibu. Available with either a four- our six-cylinder engine with a very sleek interior design, the 2012 Chevrolet Malibu is a real winner with families and with young and old drivers, alike.
The 2012 Malibu includes GM OnStar navigation, giving you turn-by-turn navigation and a clear LCD map display when you need it. In addition to that, you can also get the Malibu with a remote start feature (optional on the 1LT trim and standard on the 2LT and LTZ trims). With the car still locked and secure, you can go ahead and start it from afar to let it warm up while you stay warm inside.
Changes for 2012
For 2012, the Malibu now allows more options for those who don’t necessarily want to spend the money on an LTZ trim model. You can now get an Uplevel Package, and when you buy a 1LT trim model, you can choose between the Sunroof package and the Convenience package.
What We Like
The suspension in this car is really plush. It absorbs bumps, dips, and other road imperfections with ease, and you’ll feel like you’re gliding along on a cloud. We love the idea of buying a domestic sedan that stands up to the import competition.
What Concerns Us
We’re not as impressed with the four-cylinder engine as we are with the V6 version, and we could see times when loading the car down with your whole family and all of your luggage could cause problems for that small engine, especially if you’re going over high terrain.
The four-cylinder model has a 2.4-liter, 169-horsepower engine, while the V6 model has a 3.6-liter, 252-horsepower engine. There’s a trade-off, though, as the four-cylinder model gets higher gas mileage (22/33 MPG city/highway) than the V6 (17/26 MPG city/highway).
Some 2012 Chevrolet Malibu models have been recalled due to the risk of breakage for either the driver-side or passenger-side front seat belts. This can be dealt with at any Chevrolet dealer.
The most often reported issues with the 2012 Malibu are problems with the engine failing to start or erratic throttle responses. These are easy to detect and avoid when shopping for a 2012 Chevrolet Malibu.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as A Buyer’s Guide to the 2012 Chevrolet Malibu and was authored by Valerie Johnston.