There is a lot that I really like about the 2022 Chevy Malibu. There’s also a lot that I don’t like. It’s basically the kind of car that I love to hate.
- On one hand, it’s the perfect highway cruiser. It’s fairly quick in a straight line, it tracks dead straight, and the ride quality is good enough to satisfy grandpas everywhere (even the ones who complain about everything).
- On the other hand, it’s easily the most soulless (and boring) car that I’ve driven in a very long time. I had no idea he was possible to make a car this bland – but Chevy succeeded magnificently.
My full review of the 2022 Chevrolet Malibu
Don’t give me wrong. The 2022 Malibu is a darn good car. As you read through this review, keep in mind that the only real criticism that I have about it is how stinkin’ bland it is. That’s it. It does everything that a somewhat affordable midsize sedan should do (and it does it fairly well).
Exterior styling and design
I might as well start with the worst thing first. It’s not that the Malibu is ugly. Hardly. The issue I have with the exterior styling is the fact that it’s very clear that the designers didn’t dare take any chances. It’s as if they were told to pen the most sterile car possible. They nailed it.
I actually like the sloping roofline. The hard creases in the lower (and upper) body sections or nice. The tapered rear end results in an unfortunately narrow trunk opening, but it looks good IMHO.
Remember when General Motors used to produce the worst looking cars on the planet? My old 1983 Pontiac 6000 was essentially the 1980s version of the 2022 Malibu. It’s nice to see that they’ve learned from past mistakes – and are actually making an effort to build decent looking cars these days.
Interior styling and design
“Swoopy” was the word that came to mind as I opened the door and sat down inside of the 2022 Malibu for the first time. From the door cards to the dashboard, I’m talking aggressively swoopy. There’s not a straight line anywhere in the interior (which I find peculiar considering the Malibu is targeted towards an older demographic).
I also quite like how durable the seat materials are. The car you see in these pictures had nearly 40,000 miles on it, and all interior surfaces (including the seats) had held up well.
The 2022 Malibu that I drove featured the 160 hp turbocharged four-cylinder engine. 160 hp may seem like not enough for a car this size, but I can assure you that it’s enough for normal driving. Spirited driving though? Yeah, you’ll want the bigger engine for that.
The Malibu is a deceiving vehicle. Just by looking at it, it’s hard not to assume that the ride will be soft and squishy. Not only that, you might even assume that it won’t inspire a lot of confidence going around tight corners. And you’d be mostly right!
I say “mostly” because it goes around corners a lot better than most people expect. In my opinion, it’s the small-diameter steering wheel which helps to create the illusion of snappy and precise handling. I didn’t even notice how small it was until I drove it out of the parking lot for the first time, but it really helps to make the 2022 Malibu seem far more nimble than it really is.
I put 157 miles on this car over the span of three days. I drove it on the freeway at high(ish)-speed, and I tinkered around town in bumper-to-bumper traffic. Through all of that, I managed a very respectable 22.5 MPG. That’s nothing short of impressive considering how much of a lead foot that I have.
Should you buy one?
Yeah, I guess it’s a pretty decent car if all you need is something reliable and basic. You’re not going make any statements with it. Heck – it’s very likely that no one will even notice you. It’s that inconspicuous.
Perhaps the best way to figure out if this car is for you or not to read my list of all the Chevy Malibu pros and cons. It’s brutally honest – and straight to the point.