Kemna Cadillac Compares 2017 Chevrolet Malibu VS 2017 Buick Verano Near Spirit Lake, IA

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2017 Chevrolet Malibu

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2017 Chevrolet Malibu

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2017 Buick Verano

Safety Comparison

The Malibu LT/Premier offers optional Front Automatic Braking, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Verano offers an available collision warning system without the automated brake feature that would prevent or reduce the collision if the driver fails to react.

The Malibu LT/Premier offers optional Front and Rear Park Assist to help warn the driver about vehicles, pedestrians or other obstacles behind or in front of their vehicle. The Verano doesn’t offer a front parking aid.

Both the Malibu and the Verano 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, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, available lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Chevrolet Malibu is safer than the Buick Verano:







5 Stars

5 Stars

Neck Injury Risk






5 Stars

5 Stars




Neck Compression

62 lbs.

93 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Chevrolet Malibu is safer than the Buick Verano:





Into Pole


5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

13 inches

13 inches




Spine Acceleration

29 G’s

45 G’s

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

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 Verano 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.

Engine Comparison

The Malibu’s standard 1.5 turbo 4 cyl. produces 13 lbs.-ft. more torque (184 vs. 171) than the Verano’s 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl. The Malibu Premier’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 70 more horsepower (250 vs. 180) and 89 lbs.-ft. more torque (260 vs. 171) than the Verano’s 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

As tested in Car and Driver the Chevrolet Malibu is faster than the Buick Verano:


Malibu 1.5

Malibu Premier


Zero to 60 MPH

8 sec

6.1 sec

8.2 sec

Top Speed

130 MPH

156 MPH

118 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

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

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Malibu 1.5 Turbo’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Verano doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Malibu’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Verano:




Front Rotors

11.8 inches

10.8 inches

Rear Rotors

11.3 inches

10.5 inches

The Malibu stops much shorter than the Verano:





70 to 0 MPH

167 feet

178 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

117 feet

124 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Malibu’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Verano (245/45R18 vs. 235/45R18).

The Malibu Premier’s optional tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Verano’s optional 45 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Malibu Premier offers optional 19-inch wheels. The Verano’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

For superior ride and handling, the Chevrolet Malibu has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Buick Verano has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.

The Malibu has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the Malibu flat and controlled during cornering. The Verano’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Malibu’s wheelbase is 5.7 inches longer than on the Verano (111.4 inches vs. 105.7 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Malibu is 2.3 inches wider in the front and 1.8 inches wider in the rear than on the Verano.

The Malibu Premier handles at .88 G’s, while the Verano pulls only .81 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Malibu Premier executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1 seconds quicker than the Verano (26.4 seconds @ .68 average G’s vs. 27.4 seconds @ .61 average G’s).

Chassis Comparison

The Chevrolet Malibu may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs up to about 200 pounds less than the Buick Verano.

The front grille of the Malibu (except 2.0 Turbo) uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Verano doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space Comparison

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the Malibu is rated a Mid-size car by the EPA, while the Verano is rated a Compact.

The Malibu has 7.9 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Verano (102.9 vs. 95).

The Malibu has .8 inches more front headroom, .4 inches more front hip room, 3.4 inches more front shoulder room, 3.4 inches more rear legroom, 1.5 inches more rear hip room and 4.2 inches more rear shoulder room than the Verano.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Malibu has a much larger trunk than the Verano (15.8 vs. 14.3 cubic feet).

Ergonomics Comparison

When two different drivers share the Malibu Premier, the memory seats and mirrors make it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position and outside mirror angle. The Verano doesn’t offer a memory system.

The Malibu Premier’s standard easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Verano doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

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 Verano does not have an oil pressure gauge.

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 Verano doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

When the Malibu Premier is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Verano’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the Malibu Premier keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Verano doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

Both the Malibu and the Verano offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Malibu LT/Premier has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Verano doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

A built-in pollen filter removes pollen, exhaust fumes and other pollutants from the Malibu’s passenger compartment. This helps prevent lung and/or sinus irritation, which can trigger allergies or asthma. The Verano doesn’t offer a filtration system.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Malibu Premier offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Verano doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

The Malibu (except L/LS) offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The Verano doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

The Malibu Premier’s optional Semi-Automatic Parking Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Verano doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Economic Advantages Comparison

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Malibu is less expensive to operate than the Verano because it costs $9 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Malibu than the Verano, including $11 less for front brake pads and $503 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations Comparison

The Chevrolet Malibu outsold the Buick Verano by almost seven to one during the 2016 model year.

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