Kemna Automotive Group Compares 2017 Chevrolet Malibu VS 2017 Buick LaCrosse In IA

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2017 Chevrolet Malibu

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2017 Chevrolet Malibu

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2017 Buick LaCrosse

Safety Comparison

Both the Malibu and the LaCrosse have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front and rear side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, available crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras and rear cross-path warning.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Malibu the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 103 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The LaCrosse has not been fully tested, yet, but doesn’t qualify for 2017 “Top Pick.”

Warranty Comparison

There are over 47 percent more Chevrolet dealers than there are Buick dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Malibu’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2016 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are better in initial quality than Buick vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet 6th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 1 more problems per 100 vehicles, Buick is ranked 7th.

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the Malibu with its standard engine gets better fuel mileage than the LaCrosse FWD (27 city/36 hwy vs. 21 city/31 hwy).

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

The Malibu stops shorter than the LaCrosse:





70 to 0 MPH

167 feet

173 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

117 feet

123 feet

Motor Trend

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Malibu Premier handles at .87 G’s, while the LaCrosse Essence pulls only .83 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The Malibu Premier executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the LaCrosse Premium (26.4 seconds @ .68 average G’s vs. 26.8 seconds @ .66 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the Malibu’s turning circle is 1 foot tighter than the LaCrosse’s (37 feet vs. 38 feet).

Chassis Comparison

The Chevrolet Malibu may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 450 to 500 pounds less than the Buick LaCrosse.

The Malibu is 3.7 inches shorter than the LaCrosse, making the Malibu easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space Comparison

The Malibu has .7 inches more front headroom, .8 inches more front shoulder room, .3 inches more rear headroom and .5 inches more rear shoulder room than the LaCrosse.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Malibu has a larger trunk than the LaCrosse (15.8 vs. 15 cubic feet).

Ergonomics Comparison

The Malibu’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The LaCrosse does not have an oil pressure gauge.

The Keyless Access System standard on the Malibu allows you to unlock the doors, trunk and start the engine all without removing a key from pocket or purse. This eliminates searching for keys before loading groceries, getting in the vehicle in bad weather or making a hurried start to your trip. The Buick LaCrosse’s Keyless Access doesn’t unlock the trunk.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors available for the Malibu LT/Premier detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The LaCrosse doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

Economic Advantages Comparison

Insurance will cost less for the Malibu owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the Malibu with a number “3” insurance rate while the LaCrosse is rated higher at a number “5” rate.

Recommendations Comparison

The Chevrolet Malibu outsold the Buick LaCrosse by over seven to one during the 2016 model year.

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