2019 Chevrolet Malibu RS: Sportier Looks and Drive

Published: Monday, November 11, 2019 | 8:13 PM

When I was a kid the first new car my dad ever bought was a Chevy Malibu. He loved that car and took wonderful care of it. Unfortunately I was the first one to give it a door ding, I’ll never forget the look on my dad’s face. So whenever I get a chance to drive a Malibu it is with much nostalgia for that long ago blue-gray car that was a part of my life for many years.

Jumping to 2019, the Chevrolet Malibu has kept up with the times. It has a refreshed look and an upgraded infotainment system. It comes in five trim levels: L, LS, LT, RS and Premier. This review will focus on the sporty RS trim.

With unique appearance accents and a sportier look the RS trim adds dual exhaust tips, black 18-inch alloy wheels, a spoiler, blacked-out exterior trim pieces, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, and an eight-way power-adjustable driver’s seat with power lumbar.

2019chevroletmalibuintPowering the Malibu RS is a 1.5 liter turbocharged engine providing 160 horses and 184 pound-feet of torque. The engine is mated to a continuously variable automatic transmission, which bumps the fuel economy a bit. Expect to get 29/city, 36/highway, and 32/combined mpg.

Inside the cabin is a simply designed dash with lots of controls for ease of use. Front seat passengers will be plenty comfy with an eight-way power seat. Back seat passengers are not as fortunate as the space is somewhat cramped and that sporty sloped roof makes it feel more confining.

With 15.8 cubic feet of trunk space, there’s plenty of room for all the stuff we have to carry on a daily basis. The back seat has a 60/40 split that allows access for longer cargo.

A quiet cabin is one of the Malibu’s strong points, the road and engine noise is dampened nicely which is especially nice for longer trips. Bumps and road imperfections are smoothed out under the car’s suspension. When accelerating the Malibu responds well and steering is adequate. It’s turning radius is pretty good for a family sedan, so winding roads are no problem.

The 2019 Chevrolet Malibu makes its mark in the family sedan segment.