Kemna Automotive Group Compares 2017 Chevrolet Malibu VS 2017 Toyota Avalon In IA

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2017 Chevrolet Malibu

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2017 Chevrolet Malibu

VS
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2017 Toyota Avalon

Safety Comparison

Both the Malibu and the Avalon 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.

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 Toyota Avalon:

 

Malibu

Avalon

OVERALL STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

 

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

173

177

Neck Injury Risk

23%

33%

Leg Forces (l/r)

186/153 lbs.

492/592 lbs.

 

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

Neck Injury Risk

38%

38%

Neck Stress

173 lbs.

188 lbs.

Neck Compression

62 lbs.

108 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

173/196 lbs.

467/455 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 Toyota Avalon:

 

Malibu

Avalon

 

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

13 inches

15 inches

HIC

235

365

Spine Acceleration

29 G’s

45 G’s

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

Warranty Comparison

The Malibu’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the Avalon’s (6 vs. 5 years).

There are over 2 times as many Chevrolet dealers as there are Toyota dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Malibu’s warranty.

Engine Comparison

The Malibu Premier’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 12 lbs.-ft. more torque (260 vs. 248) than the Avalon’s 3.5 DOHC V6.

As tested in Motor Trend the Malibu Premier 2.0 Turbo is faster than the Toyota Avalon:

 

Malibu

Avalon

Zero to 60 MPH

6.2 sec

6.3 sec

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the Malibu with its standard engine gets better fuel mileage than the Avalon V6 (27 city/36 hwy vs. 21 city/30 hwy).

On the EPA test cycle the Malibu Premier 2.0 Turbo gets better fuel mileage than the Avalon V6 (22 city/33 hwy vs. 21 city/30 hwy).

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

The Malibu stops much shorter than the Avalon:

 

Malibu

Avalon

 

70 to 0 MPH

167 feet

178 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

117 feet

122 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Malibu’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Avalon (245/45R18 vs. 225/45R18).

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 Avalon Touring/Limited’s 45 series tires.

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

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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

The Malibu Premier executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.3 seconds quicker than the Avalon Limited (26.4 seconds @ .68 average G’s vs. 27.7 seconds @ .64 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the Malibu’s turning circle is 3 feet tighter than the Avalon’s (37 feet vs. 40 feet).

Chassis Comparison

The Chevrolet Malibu may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 150 to 400 pounds less than the Toyota Avalon.

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 Avalon doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the Malibu LT is quieter than the Avalon XLE:

 

Malibu

Avalon

Full-Throttle

71 dB

76 dB

70 MPH Cruising

65 dB

69 dB

Passenger Space Comparison

The Malibu has .6 inches more front headroom, .3 inches more front shoulder room and .1 inches more rear shoulder room than the Avalon.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Malibu’s standard rear seats fold to accommodate long and bulky cargo. The Avalon doesn’t offer folding rear seats, only a ski pass-through.

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 Avalon does not have an oil pressure gauge.

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 Avalon’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

On extremely cold Winter days, the Malibu Premier’s standard heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The Avalon doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

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 Avalon 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 Avalon doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

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 Avalon is rated higher at a number “5” rate.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Malibu is less expensive to operate than the Avalon because it costs $153 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Malibu than the Avalon, including $125 less for a starter, $145 less for front struts, $1221 less for a timing belt/chain and $388 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations Comparison

The Chevrolet Malibu outsold the Toyota Avalon by over four to one during the 2016 model year.

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