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2021 Chevrolet Malibu

OEM Exterior Primary
Interior Profile
OEM Exterior
OEM Exterior
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Used Car Price Range
$15,099 - $20,995
$15,099 $20,995
Select a Trim
Select a Trim
2021 L 4dr Sedan
most popular
Price:   -  From $22,270
2021 LS w/1LS 4dr Sedan Price:   -  From $23,400
2021 RS 4dr Sedan Price:   -  From $24,400
2021 LT 4dr Sedan Price:   -  From $26,800
2021 Premier 4dr Sedan Price:   -  From $33,500
Expert Rating
2.9 (Fair)

Our expert ratings are based on seven comprehensive criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

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Overview

What's New

The 2021 Chevrolet Malibu sees only detail changes this year. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility arrives as standard on all trims. The new Sport Edition Package for the LT combines black exterior trim with the buyer's choice of body colors. The Teen Driver system gains a seat belt reminder that can delay starting for up to 20 seconds.

Chevy's midsize sedan received its last full redesign in 2016, followed by a mid-cycle refresh in 2019.

Choosing Your Chevrolet Malibu

The Malibu is offered in five trim levels: L, LS, RS, LT, and Premier. Pricing starts at $23,065 including destination for the base model and tops out at $34,295 for the Premier.

Engine Choices

Most Malibu models run with a 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder. The Premier gets a more powerful 2.0-liter turbo-four.

Engine TypeHorsepowerTorqueFuel Economy (Combined)
1.5L Turbo 4-Cylinder160 hp184 lb-ft32 mpg
2.0L Turbo 4-Cylinder250 hp260 lb-ft26 mpg

The 1.5-liter comes with a continuously variable transmission (CVT), while the 2.0-liter is paired with a nine-speed automatic. Every Malibu utilizes front-wheel drive.

Passenger and Cargo Capacity

The Malibu offers typical interior room for a midsize sedan, which translates into reasonable comfort for five people. The trunk measures a hearty 15.7 cubic feet.

Chevrolet Malibu

Safety Features

The entry-level L isn't eligible for any driver assistance technology. The LS, LT, and RS can be equipped with the Driver Confidence I Package ($545), which provides rear parking sensors and blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert.

The other choice is the Driver Confidence I & II Package ($1,095), which also contains automatic high beams, lane keeping assist, a following distance indicator, forward collision warning with pedestrian detection, and automatic emergency braking. These features are all standard on the Premier.

The Enhanced Driver Confidence Package ($2,095) for the Premier adds adaptive cruise control, an automated parking system, an electronic parking brake, and hard braking assist.

Connectivity

The standard infotainment system includes an 8-inch touchscreen, six audio speakers, a single USB port, Bluetooth for two active phones, and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Wi-fi capability is standard starting with the LS, and satellite radio arrives with the LT.

The Premier gets a nine-speaker Bose sound system, a configurable touchscreen, two rear USB ports, and wireless device charging.

Chevrolet Malibu

L - From $23,065

The most basic Malibu L comes with manual climate control, push button start, proximity key access, cloth upholstery, power side mirrors, and 16-inch aluminum wheels. There are no option packages and only two exterior colors, white and silver.

LS - From $24,195

The LS picks up a compass, an outside temperature display, visor vanity mirrors, active noise cancellation, and Teen Driver technology.

The Convenience Package II adds remote start, a cargo net, and all-weather floor mats for $495.

RS - From $25,195

The RS takes on a sportier appearance with black badging, black grille inserts, dual exhaust outlets, a rear spoiler, body-color side mirrors, and 18-inch wheels. The interior receives a power driver seat and a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob.

LT - From $27,595

The LT comes standard with heated front seats, heated side mirrors, power lumbar control for the driver seat, LED running lights and taillights, dual-zone automatic climate control, lighted visor mirrors, remote start, and 17-inch wheels.

The Leather Package ($1,590) provides more interior luxury in the form of leather upholstery, a heated steering wheel, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror.

There's a few other ways to dress up to the LT. The Redline Edition ($1,195) includes 19-inch black wheels, red hash marks on the wheels and side mirrors, black exterior trim, and a black interior. The Sport Edition ($895) loses the red accents, but is otherwise the same. The Midnight Edition, also $895, comes with black exterior paint only. Prices drop by $100 when the Leather Package is also selected. A dual pane sunroof is available on the LT for $1,050.

Premier - $34,295

The Premier comes with everything available on the LT, plus ventilated front seats, a power passenger seat, heated rear seats, extra chrome exterior trim, and unique 19-inch wheels.

Compare Malibu Trims Side-By-Side

CarsDirect Tip

The 2021 Chevy Malibu L exists mainly for fleet sales and advertising purposes. The LS is the real base model, although the LT offers more car for the money. The Premier isn't cheap, but its 2.0-liter engine transforms the Malibu into one quick family sedan.

author image
Automotive Editor
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Expert Review

Pros
  • Sharp exterior styling
  • Serene and comfortable
  • Excellent infotainment system
Cons
  • Uninteresting cockpit
  • Limited standard safety features
  • Hybrid variant is gone
Expert Rating
2.9 (Fair)

Our expert ratings are based on seven comprehensive criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

author image
Contributing Editor

Exterior styling is better than the interior. The 2021 Chevrolet Malibu is back as part of the same generation that was introduced in 2019. The current Malibu is a sharp improvement over the previous models. For decades, the Malibu’s plain design was common in the rental and fleet vehicle circuits, and not especially appealing beyond that.

The current form is a nice step up with its wide grille, pleasing brightwork trim, hood bulges, and curvy lines. We like the look of the available larger wheels, but the rearview remains anonymous.

Inside, the cabin is roomy and bright, with ample room for four, or five in a pinch. All knobs, switches, and the touchscreen are placed high and easy to access. The cabin is quiet, but the instrument panel is about as plain as you’ll find in this segment. Yet, the current iteration is simply better than what we’ve seen from Chevy in many years.

Safety is a mixed bag. Chevy equips the Malibu with 10 airbags, including knee airbags for the driver and front passenger. That’s a laudable number for a midsize sedan, underscoring the brand's attention to passenger safety.

But the news isn’t all good, as the Malibu hasn’t scored quite as well in crash testing conducted by the NHTSA. The NHTSA gave the Malibu a four-star overall safety rating and for its side crash protection for rear-seat passengers.

Chevy doesn’t match the Toyota Camry or Nissan Altima in standard driver assist safety technologies either. While most competitors offer standard automatic emergency braking, you’re forced to pay $1,100 to $2,100 it in a bundle on the Malibu. We recommend the upgrade, as the Chevy remains a decent value despite the extra cost.


Chevrolet Malibu

Two engine choices. Most Malibu models have a 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that's good for 160 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. A same-sized engine in the Honda Accord produces 192 hp and 192 lb-ft of torque – and both models work with a continuously variable transmission.

Fuel efficiency is a strong suit for the Malibu’s standard engine, which earns an EPA-estimated 29 miles per gallon city, 36 mpg highway, and 32 combined. On the other hand, the Accord's delivers 33 mpg combined.

Select the Malibu Premier and the engine choice is a 2.0-liter turbo-four with 250 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque. This one sends power to the front wheels utilizing a nine-speed automatic transmission.

While we won’t call the Malibu a performance sedan when equipped with the larger engine, it’s a fitting substitute for a V6. As equipped, this model earns a combined 26 mpg.

Excellent infotainment system. While we don’t recommend the base L trim for its relatively spartan feature roster, one area where Chevy doesn’t skimp is in all things infotainment.

Every trim features an 8-inch touchscreen display powered by the MyLink infotainment system. It’s one of the best out there, with clear, crisp, and tablet-like functionality.

Chevy bundles MyLink with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone compatibility. Alongside wi-fi hot spot capability, Bluetooth, USB connectivity, and six audio speakers, the Malibu’s standard tech roster is commendable.

Package options start with the LS, the second of five Malibu trims. Move up to the LT and satellite radio becomes standard. The Premier pulls out all the stops, adding a 9-speaker Bose audio system, navigation, additional USB ports, and a 120-volt power outlet.

Final thoughts. While it’s easy to spend $36,000 on a 2021 Chevy Malibu Premier model, the LT trim with the Driver Confidence Packages (which add several safety features) costs $28,690. That’s before the usual discounting that prices this vehicle thousands of dollars below what some competitors charge.

Check prices for the 2021 Chevy Malibu »

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Specs & Features

Highlights
Overall Crash Safety Rating
Engine - Cylinders/Horsepower/Torque
1.5L I-4 / 160 HP / 184 ft.lbs.
Transmission
2-spd CVT w/OD
Drive Type
Front-wheel
Fuel Economy - City/Highway/Combined
29 / 36 / 32 Mpg
Passenger Capacity
5
Bumper to Bumper Warranty
36 Months / 36,000 Miles
Mechanical Specs
Engine - Cylinders/Horsepower/Torque
1.5L I-4 / 160 HP / 184 ft.lbs.
Drive Type
Front-wheel
Fuel Economy - City/Hwy/Combined
29 / 36 / 32 Mpg
Brakes
Duralife 4-wheel Disc
Front Suspension
Strut
Rear Suspension
Independent Multi-link
Spare Tire And Wheel
Compact Steel
Fuel Tank
15.8 Gal.
Recommended Fuel Type
Regular Unleaded
Average Cost To Fill Tank
$60
Dimensions & Capabilities
Maximum Cargo Volume
15.7 Cu.ft.
Passenger Volume
103 Cu.ft.
Exterior Length
194.2 "
Exterior Width
73.0 "
Exterior Height
57.3 "
Front Headroom
39.1 "
Rear Headroom
37.5 "
Front Legroom
41.5 "
Rear Legroom
38.1 "
Front Shoulder Room
58.5 "
Rear Shoulder Room
57.1 "
Front Hip Room
Rear Hip Room
Curb Weight
3,126 Lbs.
Wheel Base
111 "
Turning Radius
18.5 '
Exterior Features
Door Count
4 Doors
Wheels
16.0 " Silver Aluminum
Paint
Clearcoat Monotone
Exterior Mirrors
Dual Power Remote
Bumpers
Body-colored
Grille Moldings
Black W/chrome Accents
Rear Spoiler
Exhaust
Stainless Steel
Interior Features
Seating
Passenger Capacity
5
Seat Trim
Premium Cloth
Front Seat Type
Bucket
Heated Front Seats
Front Driver Seat Direction Controls
6-way
Front Passenger Seat Direction Controls
6-way
Front Armrests
6-way
Rear Armrests
Rear Seats
60-40 Bench
Radio & Infotainment
Radio
Chevrolet Infotainment 3 Am/fm, Clock, Seek-scan
Speakers
6
Radio Steering Wheel Controls
Apple Car Play
Android Auto
Bluetooth w/ Hands-Free Connectivity
Convenience Features
Steering Wheel Type
Telescopic Tilt
Climate Control
Cruise Control
With Steering Wheel Controls
Sun Roof
Rearview Mirror
Day-night
One Touch Open Window
Front And Rear
Tinted Windows
Light
Vanity Mirrors
Remote Keyless Entry
Keyfob (all Doors)
Power Outlets
1
Safety Features
Overall Crash Safety Rating
Overall Front Crash Safety Rating
Overall Side Crash Safety Rating
Rollover Crash Safety Rating
Front Impact Airbags
Driver And Passenger
Driver Side Impact Airbags
Seat Mounted
Knee Airbag
Driver And Passenger
Passenger Side Impact Airbag
Seat Mounted
Rear Side Airbag
Rear Side-impact Airbag
Seatbelt Pretensioners
Front
Anti-Lock Brakes
4-wheel Anti-lock Brakes (abs)
Forward Collision Warning
Blind Spot Sensor
Lane Departure Warning
Autonomous Cruise Control
Pedestrian Detection
Driver Attention Alert
Daytime Running Lights
Auto High Beams
Adaptive Headlights
Parking Sensors
Security Systems
Security System
Panic Alarm
Ignition Disable
Immobilizer
Warranty
Bumper To Bumper Months Miles
36 Months / 36,000 Miles
Major Components Months
60 Months / 60,000 Miles
Included Maintenance Months
12 Months / 12,000 Miles
Roadside Assistance Months
60 Months / 60,000 Miles
Corrosion Perforation
72 Months / 100,000 Miles
Accessories Months

Used 2021 Chevrolet Malibu for Sale

17 vehicles found within 50 miles of your area
Chevrolet
LT
Color: White
Price

$15,099

Mileage

55,588 mi

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California Motors Direct - Montclair (42 mi)

Phone: (909) 200-2277
Chevrolet
LT
Color: Silver
Price

$15,375

Mileage

63,457 mi

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STG Auto Group of Bellflower (15 mi)

Phone: (562) 302-4744
Chevrolet
LT
Color: Silver
Price

$15,495

Mileage

61,321 mi

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Anaheim Hyundai (31 mi)

Phone: (714) 956-1820
Chevrolet
FWD LT
Color: Black
Price

$15,877

Mileage

88,492 mi

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Chevrolet of Carson (12 mi)

Phone: (877) 476-6172
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