“Korea is the first country to produce and sell the all-new Malibu,” commented GM Korea President and CEO Mike Arcamone. “With expressive styling, a comfortable cabin, outstanding ride and handling, and top-notch safety, it will exceed the expectations of consumers.” The 4865mm-long 2012 Malibu is offered in South Korea with a choice of two four-cylinder Ecotec petrol engines, both linked to an automatic transmission (6 Speed I guess). The entry-level 2.0-liter unit is rated at 141hp and delivers a combined fuel economy of 12.4km/L, while the larger displacement 2.4-liter engine produces 178hp and returns a fuel economy of 11.8km/L. Personally, I would rather have the Astra’s 180hp, 1.6-litre turbo under its bonnet. The top-of-the range model could be equipped with the Insignia’s 220hp, 2.0-litre turbo. Hope this suggestion would come true one day.
Design-wise, it is not as adventurous as its Korean counterparts, namely the Hyundai Sonata and Kia Optima. In Korea, the Sonata is offered with the option of the company’s latest 2.0-litre 271hp GDI Turbo power plant. Fuel consumption is rated at 12.8km/L, which triumphs the figure of the less powerful Malibu. For the Malibu to be successful in South Korea, I guess it has to be aggressive on its pricing and offer a buffet of standard equipment to make up for its less impressive engines.