New Chevrolet Malibu to take on Ford Mondeo

The new Chevrolet Malibu will be the first mid-size saloon sold in the European market since Chevrolet returned in 2005 where it will be aimed at the fleet and business sectors.

“The Malibu will come on top of the seven new entries launched in Chevrolet’s centennial year,” said Wayne Brannon, President and Managing Director of Chevrolet Europe. “The Chevrolet Malibu is the brand’s new top-of-the-range offering, bringing proven value with a premium feel to Europe’s midsize segment.”

In terms of design, the Malibu borrows heavily from Chevrolet’s new range such as the Chevrolet Aveo and Chevrolet Cruze. The grille is almost identical and includes Xenon headlamps. At the rear, LED lights are influenced by the new Chevrolet Camaro muscle car.

However, inside the design is completely new. Ambient lighting, several storage pockets and an instrument panel featuring a seven-inch touch screen is designed to showcase the car’s premium appeal compared to its volume range.

A full equipment list has not been revealed, but wireless Bluetooth, satellite navigation and a sound system with MP3 compatibility has been confirmed.

Under the bonnet, the Chevrolet Malibu will boast a choice of a 2.0-litre petrol engine or a 2.4-litre diesel unit and both manual and automatic transmission options.

Full performance figures have not been disclosed but Chevrolet says the new Malibu will be the most aerodynamic car in its class, which will bring down fuel consumption.

The Chevrolet Malibu will compete with the likes of the Ford Mondeo, Vauxhall Insignia and another newcomer to the market, the Kia Optima, in the UK.

Prices for the Chevrolet Malibu will be important to show its position in the market, but these will not be announced until closer to an expected launch date in the middle of 2012.