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2016 Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid Overview
Up till now, when folks talked about Chevy’s Malibu Hybrid, they meant a version of GM’s Eco gasoline-fired 4-cylinder engine slightly modified with the addition of a small electric motor. Chevrolet’s 2016 Malibu Hybrid, however, is a whole new animal that boasts for-real hybrid technology, not to mention a whole new look. Furthermore, this new 5-seat gas-electric midsize sedan gets all the upgrades slated for its next-gen normally powered Malibu sibling, including a new high-strength-steel chassis boasting 300 fewer pounds and a longer wheelbase, as well as upgraded smartphone apps and infotainment systems, and a restyled profile featuring a coupe-like roofline, totally remodeled front and rear fascia, and some major reshaping of the sheet metal.
Although there’s no official word yet regarding the 2016 Malibu Hybrid’s trim lineup, expect Chevy to stick with tradition and to offer the Hybrid edition mirroring the bells and whistles scheduled to adorn the newly branded Premier flagship version of its non-hybrid Malibu sedan.
As for this new hybrid’s powertrain, look for a 1.8-liter direct-injected (DI) inline 4-cylinder (I4) gasoline engine to be mated with a pair of electric motors, with one motor dedicated to boost the I4’s power and the other directed to powering the multitude of accessories expected to be stashed aboard. A brand new Exhaust Heat Recovery System also allows quicker and more efficient cabin heating. Of course, regenerative braking will assist the gas engine in juicing up the 1.5-kilowatt-per-hour (kWh) lithium-ion battery pack, with the whole system touted by Chevy to put out a total of 182 hp under the expected management of a new 6-speed shiftable automatic transmission.
The folks at Chevy are already crowing that the 2016 Malibu Hybrid will boast mileage numbers estimated at 48 city/45 highway/47 combined, though some in the media caution that these figures might be tough to duplicate in real-world driving. Additionally, the upcoming Malibu Hybrid is ballyhooed to scoot along at up to 55 mph on electric power alone for short distances, with a 0-60 time estimated at under 8 seconds.
Much of the new Malibu Hybrid’s powerplant technology, by the way, is borrowed from its second-generation 2016 Volt cousin.
Look for the 2016 Malibu Hybrid to offer all the expected advantages of its normally powered Malibu kinsman, including a marginally lower stance, a smidgen more passenger room, and, perhaps, a small bump in trunk room. Also slated to adorn the revamped exterior are such niceties as 18-inch alloy wheels, a power sunroof, and heated power-adjustable mirrors. Inside, this new 4-door hybrid will doubtless come equipped with upgraded upholstery, power-adjustable front seats, full power accessories, cruise control, and telescoping tilt-wheel steering. Additionally, expect standard automatic dual-zone climate control to adorn the next-gen Malibu Hybrid, along with a rear-view camera, an auto-dimming rear-view mirror, upgraded infotainment technology, and the recently added 4G LTE WiFi boasting improved smartphone apps.
Of course, Bluetooth-interfaced OnStar Directions and Connections services are slated for the new Malibu Hybrid, as is a standard CD player with 6 speakers, satellite radio, and auxiliary audio input.
Finally, look for such perks as GPS navigation and a premium audio system to be among the optional equipment offerings available to the 2016 Malibu Hybrid.
Among the expected safety features of the 2016 Malibu Hybrid are the usual 4-wheel antilock braking system (ABS), traction and stability control, front side-mounted airbags, and front and rear head airbags. Further standard safety stuff is scheduled to include daytime running lights, front fog/driving lights, OnStar emergency telematics, and a remote antitheft alarm. Additionally, Chevy is expected to introduce a number of new safety technology systems, including front collision warnings, rear cross-traffic alerts, and lane-keeping assistance, as well as its debuting Teen Driver programmable speed- and audio-limiting system, which is similar to Ford’s touted MyKey teen-oriented safety technology.
Have Laptop. Will Travel. I'm retired and travelling the country in a 34' motor home. I'm really digging meeting people . . and sometimes their cars . . . getting a sense of what makes this nation tick. The plan is to visit all the national parks in the continental US, then cruise to Alaska to visit Denali, and to Hawaii to check out Haleakala and the Hawaii Volcano's national parks. Anyhow, when I'm not horsing the motor home around the roadways, I'm tooting around in the 2012 Ford Focus that we tow behind, or making runs to Home Depot and various malls with the 2004 F-150 that just won't die.
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