If you have been reading me for awhile now, you know I drive A LOT. Or at least I am usually in my car for one reason or another. Either in my blog event travels, chauffeuring the princess or just taking and getting everyone to and fro all over L.A. Sometimes I am stuck in my car a lot more than I want to be (yay traffic) and sometimes I just drive for the sake of driving. So, suffice to say, I have built an idea in my head of my ideal car: smooth, quiet, fuel efficient and not a minivan. When I was contacted by Chevy to test drive the new 2013 Chevy Malibu Eco… I said hmm, could this be it? Read on and find out…
The 2013 Chevy Malibu was beautiful. Sleek and smooth, comparable to the latest Toyota Camry model in size, I almost didn’t want to muck it up by sitting in it. But of course, I was out driving off in less than an hour after it’s arrival.
Here is some of the pre-test info I received before my week with the Malibu.
The car itself- the 2013 Malibu Eco is Chevrolet’s most fuel-efficient Malibu ever, delivering an EPA-estimated 25 mpg in city driving and 37 mpg on the highway. Perfect for a long road trip or adventure with your family! The Eco is the first model of the all-new Malibu lineup to launch in the United States. It went on sale earlier this year and starts at $25,995, less than competitor full-hybrid vehicles making it a great value for families. The Eco is also the first and only all-new 2013 midsize car to receive double honors for safety including a 5-Star Overall Vehicle Score from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and a 2012 Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
The very first thing I noticed was how incredibly quite the car was. Driving it on the freeway was like gliding. I could barely hear an engine running. When I was stopped at lights, the car was just seemingly “go to sleep” only to be reactivated when I hit the gas again. That’s where the fuel economy set in. The other nice thing I noticed was the dash. Armed with typical features included in many 2013 models such as satellite radio and bluetooth capibility, it also came armed with OnStar, which served as a substitute for the navigation that most cars come with. OnStar provides hands free called and turn by turn navigation. While I didn’t get to use it much, I have heard it is a great safety feature as it can be used to track stolen vehicles and to call emergency in the event of an accident.
Other neat features included the non handle trunk- it just took pressing a button and it would open up. Trunk space was about average and the leather interior was really nice (even though I freaked out anytime Sofia had juice in the car).
Here are some low points. While this model calls itself the an “eco” car, I didn’t see much fuel economy. When I received the car it was at about 1396 miles and a full tank of gas. By the end of the week, I had gone about 200-225 miles and the gas was at 1/8th. My current vehicle, which is not a fuel economy car (also older- 2007) can go 350 on a full tank. So that was a little disappointing. Next was the roominess… basically there is none. I’m about 5’2 and my husband is about 6’3. When we had our daughter in the car with us, there was no room for her legs, so he basically had to scrunch up a bit. Also, I found myself hitting my head practically every time I got out of the car because it was all around narrow. While it looks spacy, we both agreed that was only an outside look as the inside is a bit crampy.
The 2013 Chevy Malibu is quiet and sleek, but more for a business person using it for work rather than for a family, in my opinion. Although I enjoyed driving it, I think it needs some improvement.
Disclosure: I received a vehicle to drive for a week in order to write this review. No compensation was received. All thoughts and opinions are my own.