2011 Chevrolet Malibu

MSRP $22,055 - $27,165

Ranked #2 in Sedan

8.1

Overall Rating

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2011 Chevrolet Malibu Price, Review, Ratings and Pictures

Updated on: August 10, 2021

Nathan Dyer's image
Nathan Dyer 

Senior Editor


The Chevrolet Malibu is a well-known car in the American market ever since it became the American car of the year for the 2009 model year. It has been around for decades and the full-size sedan has seen multiple makeovers. The seventh generation of the Malibu was introduced to the world back in 2008 for the first time and offers impressive space, performance and ride quality while not compromising on the fuel efficiency and styling in any which way either. 

 

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Pros

Frugal fuel economy

Impressive safety performance

Spacious and roomy interior

Refined ride quality

Eye-catchy styling both inside and out

Cons

Bluetooth connectivity unavailable on lower trims

Sub-par interior material quality

Not the most comfortable rear seat

What's New?

New 6-speed automatic transmission replaces the 4-speed automatic


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$22055

bodystyle

4dr Sedan

passenger capacity

5

drivetrain

front wheel drive

engine type

displacement

91 cu.in.

horsepower

170 hp @ 6200 rpm

torque

158 lb.-ft. @ 5200 rpm

transmission

6 speed shiftable automatic

dimensions

wheelbase

112 in.

length

192 in.

width

79 in.

height

57 in.

curb weight

3432 lbs.

ground clearance

6 in.

capacity

passenger volume

97.7 cu ft.

cargo volume

15.1 cu ft.

towing capacity

1000 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

9.3 sec.

standing 1/4-mile

16.8 sec.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

22/26/33 mpg

highway range

528.0 mi.

warranty

basic warranty

3 yr./ 36000 mi.

drivetrain warranty

5 yr./ 60000 mi.

roadside assistance

Yes


Pictures & Videos


Trims

LS$22,055 onwards

LT1$22,975 onwards

LT2$25,385 onwards

LTZ$27,165 onwards

Colors and Styles

2011 Chevrolet Malibu in Black Granite Metallic color
Black Granite Metallic

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Pricing and Feature

8.0

Features

8.5

Engine and Performance

8.0

Fuel Economy

6.0

Interior

9.0

Exterior

7.0

Safety

8.0

Competition

9.0

8.1

OVERALL RATING

Expert Review, Pricing Analysis and Buying Guide

8.1

Overall Rating


In the popular midsize segment, it competes against the likes of Ford Fusion, Honda Accord, Mazda6, Nissan Altima and Toyota Camry, all of which are much more popular than the Malibu. 


8.5/10
Features

8.0/10
Engine and Performance

6.0/10
Fuel Economy

9.0/10
Interior

7.0/10
Exterior

8.0/10
Safety


2011 Chevrolet Malibu Features

8.5/10

The 2011 Chevrolet Malibu is available in four trim levels for the year 2011. They are LS, 1LT, 2LT, and LTZ. The LS is the base trim with a price of $21,975. It comes with 17-inch wheels, cruise control, air-conditioning, automatic headlights, a 6-speaker audio system, satellite radio, CD player, tilt and telescoping steering wheel, OnStar, keyless entry, etc. Next in line is the 1LT which carries a price tag of $22,975. For a price difference of only $1,000, it comes with all the features standard on the LS and adds 17-inch alloy wheels, steering mounted audio controls, exterior chrome, and color-keyed body accents. 

The 2LT costs $25,385 and comes with a few features additional to those standard on the 1LT. The top of the line trim LTZ costs $27,165. It comes with all the features mentioned above. It upgrades a few existing ones and also unlocks a few exclusive ones. It comes with 18-inch cast-aluminum wheels, heated power-adjustable side view mirrors, LED tail lights, automatic climate control, 8-speaker Bose audio system, a rear 110V power outlet and leather upholstery.

Many of these features which are standard only on the LTZ are available on the lower trims as a part of add-on packages. Moreover, a sunroof is optional on all the trims except the base LS trim. 

Trim

LS

1LT

2LT

LTZ

MSRP (FWD)

$21,975

$22,975

$25,385

$27,165

Key Features

17-inch wheels

In addition to the features standard on the LS:

In addition to the features standard on the LS and 1LT:

In addition to the features standard on the 2LT:

 

Single-zone manual Air conditioning

17-inch alloy wheels

Bluetooth connectivity

18-inch cast-aluminum wheels

 

Cruise control

steering mounted audio controls

6-way power-adjustable driver’s seat

LED tail lights

 

6-speaker audio system

exterior chrome and color-keyed body accents.

Leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob

8-way driver’s seat and 6-way passenger’s seat

 

Automatic headlights

 

Auto-dimming rearview mirror

Heated power-adjustable side view mirrors

 

Satellite radio 

 

Heated front seats

8-speaker Bose audio system

We Recommend

We recommend you to buy the 2LT as it hits the sweet spot between the list of features offered and the price. Opting for this trim will unlock a few features like Bluetooth connectivity and premium cloth upholstery which are not available on the lower trims making it ideal for the money. 

2011 Chevrolet Malibu Engine and Performance

8.0/10

The 2011 Chevrolet Malibu has a naturally aspirated 2.4-liter inline-4 engine under the hood. It manages to generate 169 hp and has a maximum torque output of 160 lb-ft. These figures may not seem much but they are sufficient for all-day driving and highway driving as well. If these numbers don’t satisfy your hunger for performance, then a more powerful 3.6-liter V6 is optional on the LT and LTZ trims. It produces an impressive 252 hp and 251 lb-ft of torque. The transmission is a newly introduced 6-speed automatic after ditching the old 4-speed automatic gearbox. The power is delivered to the front wheels and that remains the only option in terms of the drivetrain.

The performance from the base engine is pretty average, taking 8.8 seconds to reach 60 mph from standstill, while the more powerful V6 does the 0-60 mph sprint in just 6.7 seconds. Behind the wheel, the experience is remarkable. There is a subtle balance between handling and ride quality. The cabin is quiet in almost every situation. The four-cylinder engine uses an electric steering system. This helps it to be light-weighted and it also makes it easy for the driver to maneuver the car in tight corners.

Model

2011 Chevrolet Malibu

2011 Honda Accord

2011 Toyota Camry

2011 Mazda6

MSRP

$21,975

$22,180

$20,195

$19,990

Engine

2.4L, Naturally Aspirated Inline-4

2.4L, Naturally Aspirated Inline-4

2.5L, Naturally Aspirated Inline-4

2.5L, Naturally Aspirated Inline-4

Drivetrain

FWD

FWD

FWD

FWD

Transmission

6-speed automatic

5-speed automatic

6-speed manual

6-speed manual

Power

169 hp @ 6,400 rpm

177 hp @ 6,500 rpm

169 hp @ 6,000 rpm

170 hp @ 6,000 rpm

Torque

160 lb-ft @ 4,500 rpm

161 lb-ft @ 4,300 rpm

167 lb-ft @ 4,100 rpm

167 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm

0-60 MPH (sec)

8.8

9.2

9.4

8.6

Quarter mile (sec)

16.9

16.9

17.2

16.5

Top speed (mph)

114

119

114

119

All the four sedans mentioned above have very similar engine output figures. The 2011 Honda Accord is slightly more powerful than the rest but is also the most expensive one here. That being said, the Mazda6 sedan is the quickest of the lot with the Malibu right at its tail. The Toyota Camry is the most sluggish in terms of acceleration performance but also comes with an affordable price tag. 

2011 Chevrolet Malibu Fuel Economy

6.0/10

The Malibu manages to deliver great fuel economy. Only the Honda Accord manages to beat it. The figures for the Malibu are 22/33/26 MPG (city/highway/combined) while the Accord provides 23/34/27 MPG. The optional V6 however, is not as fuel-efficient as the four-cylinder engine. It manages to do 17 MPG in the cities, 26 MPG on the highways which gives it a combined fuel economy of 20 MPG. The 16.4 gallon fuel tank is on the smaller side and hence offers only about 400 miles of driving range even with the base engine. 

Model

2011 Chevrolet Malibu

2011 Honda Accord

2011 Toyota Camry

2011 Mazda6

MPG (City)

22

23

22

21

MPG (Highway)

33

34

33

30

MPG (Combined)

26

27

26

24

Fuel Capacity (gal)

16.4

18.5

18.5

18.5

Range (City / Highway / Combined) (miles)

361 / 541 / 426

426 / 629 / 500

407 / 611 / 481

389 / 555 / 444

While the Malibu has a fuel tank capacity of 16.4 gallons, all the other sedans mentioned in the table above have an 18.5-gallon fuel tank. This helps them provide a range better than the Malibu. The clear winner here is the Accord. Not only does it have the best fuel efficiency, but it also provides the best overall range. Toyota Camry is right at its tail while the Mazda6 is only marginally better than the Malibu in this regard. 

2011 Chevrolet Malibu Interior

9.0/10

The 2011 Chevrolet Malibu has a well-appointed interior featuring a spacious seating arrangement and a comfortable and quiet ride. However, the materials used for the interior except the dashboard feel cheap and non-durable. The dashboard has a dual-cowl design featuring a two-tone color option. The layout of the dashboard and center console is simple and straightforward.

There is ample space in terms of headroom, shoulder room, and legroom. The front seats are exceptionally comfortable and spacious. The 2LT and LTZ also add heated functionality to the front seats. Except for the LTZ, all other trims get cloth upholstery while the LTZ gets leather upholstered seats. The same, however, cannot be said for the rear row of seats. The seats have a slightly uncomfortable seating position and the space offered is not enough for taller passengers.

Model

2011 Chevrolet Malibu

2011 Honda Accord

2011 Toyota Camry

2011 Mazda6

Seating Capacity

5

5

5

5

Front Row (Head / Shoulder / Leg) (in)

39.4 / 55.9 / 42.2

41.4 / 58.2 / 42.5

38.8 / 57.8 / 41.7

39.4 / 57.3 / 42.5

Second Row (Head / Shoulder / Leg) (in)

37.2 / 53.9 / 37.6

38.5 / 56.4 / 37.2

37.8 / 56.9 / 38.3

37.3 / 56.5 / 38.0

Cargo Capacity (cu-ft)

15.1

14.0

15.0

16.6

Not only does the Mazda6 provide the best interior space among the 4 sedans mentioned above, but also provides the best cargo space. It offers up to 16.6 cubic feet of cargo volume in the trunk. Both the Camry and Malibu offer similar trunk and cabin space with only difference being in the front and rear seat legroom. Honda offers the smallest boot but has cabin space on par with the segment standards. 

Some of the standout features of the interior are:

  • Automatic climate control (LTZ)
  • Single-zone manual air conditioning (LS and LT)
  • Cloth upholstery (LS and LT)
  • Leather upholstery (LTZ)
  • Leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob (LT and LTZ)
  • Heated front seats (LT and LTZ)
  • 8-way power-adjustable driver’s seat and 6-way power-adjustable passenger’s seat (LTZ)

How intuitive is the 2011 Chevrolet Malibu’s infotainment unit?

The infotainment system of the Malibu sits deep and low in the center console. It comes with the OnStar interface that is not exactly high-tech but it has a sufficient amount of features. A cluster of buttons and knobs are placed below the screen in a layout that is simple but not particularly user-friendly. The buttons are smaller and are hard to identify while driving. Another disadvantage is that it does not offer onscreen navigation while Bluetooth connectivity is offered only in the 2LT and LTZ trims. This system is paired to a 6-speaker audio system which gets upgraded to an 8-speaker Bose audio system in the top-tier LTZ trim.

Some of the standout infotainment features are:

  • OnStar telematics
  • Satellite radio
  • AM/FM Stereo
  • Bluetooth connectivity (2LT and LTZ)
  • CD/MP3 Player
  • 6-speaker audio system
  • USB port 
  • Steering mounted audio controls

2011 Chevrolet Malibu Exterior

7.0/10

The Malibu is an elegant-looking sedan. Its exterior styling is not exactly sporty or aggressive but it offers a sophisticated design and structure that is attractive. The front fascia comprises of handsome-looking automatic halogen headlamps, a two-tier grille with the Chevy bow-tie in the middle, a sleek and slightly sloping hood, and a simple front bumper with fog lights (optional). 

The rear end is characterized by a flat, tall and upright design. It also features LED tail lights, a big body-colored rear bumper, and a single exhaust outlet. Although the 2011 Chevrolet Malibu has low ground clearance, the side profile is comparatively taller thanks to the tall rear-end profile. An optional sunroof is available for all the trims except the base LS trim. 

Model

2011 Chevrolet Malibu

2011 Honda Accord

2011 Toyota Camry

2011 Mazda6

Curb Weight (lbs)

3,432

3,279

3,263

3,258

Length (in)

191.8

194.1

189.2

193.7

Width (in)

70.3

72.7

71.7

72.4

Height (in)

57.1

58.1

57.9

57.9

Ground Clearance (in)

6.1

5.8

5.5

5.1

Wheelbase (in)

112.3

110.2

109.3

109.8

The Malibu is the heaviest among the four sedans mentioned above. In terms of exterior dimension, the Accord outperforms its rivals by small margins. However, the Malibu has the longest wheelbase and also offers the highest ground clearance in this comparison. The Mazda rides the lowest to the ground while the Honda Accord has the largest exterior dimensions, with the Camry being the smallest.

Some of the key highlights of the exterior are:

  • Automatic halogen headlamps
  • Fog lights (optional)
  • Sunroof (optional)
  • Body-colored, power-adjustable, manual-folding, heated side-view mirrors
  • LED tail lights
  • 17-inch alloy wheels
  • Rear window shade (LTZ)

2011 Chevrolet Malibu Safety

8.0/10

Safety is another factor why the Malibu is a good purchase. The NHTSA has revised its criteria and ratings making it tougher to earn a perfect score. However, the Malibu manages to achieve a 4-star overall rating which is impressive. The IIHS awarded it an overall score of “Good” which is the highest possible rating. It scored “Good” in frontal-offset, side-impact, rear impact, roof rollover strength tests respectively. Not only does the Malibu perform well in crash tests, but also provides an array of safety and driver-assist features. Some of those features are:

  • StabiliTrak stability control
  • Brake assist
  • Traction control
  • LATCH system
  • Tire pressure monitoring system
  • OnStar turn-by-turn navigation
  • Automatic crash response

2011 Chevrolet Malibu Final Verdict

The 2011 Chevrolet Malibu provides practicality with subtle performance and comfort. It is best suited for those who seek a car for daily driving. It offers some decent features which make it value-for-money too. It performs well in almost every category with very few complaints. The Malibu especially performs well in fuel economy, safety, and interior comfort. It's a well-equipped all-rounder that should definitely be on your test-drive list.

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