As The World Shrinks: 2013 Chevy Malibu Debuts In Korea

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer
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Like the Chevrolet Cruze before it, the new Malibu was supposed to debut in Korea (probably as a Daewoo) a good year before it arrived in the US. But a few things have changed in GM’s relationship with its Korean unit, no longer called Daewoo but GM Korea. The Daewoo brand is gone, for one, replaced by the Chevrolet bowtie. And with Bob Lutz’s blessing, GM CEO Dan Akerson pulled forward the US Malibu launch by some six months, which means we should be getting it in the first quarter next year.

And though the possibility of a simultaneous global launch is still out of reach (video of the Korean launch can be found here), this model is a key element in GM’s globalizing effort, replacing not only the US Malibu, but also the Daewoo Tosca (a.k.a Chevy/Holden Epica). We knew GM has way too many architectures across its global lineup, but were you aware that the Tosca/Epica had optional Porsche-designed transverse straight-six engines, in 2.0 and 2.5-liter configurations? Neither did I. But with the new Malibu, it’s straight-up-and-down GM: the Epsilon II platform, with 2.0 or 2.4 Ecotec engines (in Korea, anyway… an all-new 2.5-liter engine is on tap fro the US). We may be quick with the Daewoo jokes, but this new Malibu is doubtless making the automotive world a much smaller, more homogenous place. Welcome to the future… [Hat Tip to our man in Korea, Walter Foreman}

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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11 of 93 comments
  • Almost Jake Almost Jake on Oct 05, 2011

    They super-sized a Cruz. I'm not impressed. What next, a Buick version with more body cladding?

    • Steven02 Steven02 on Oct 05, 2011

      If you only knew that this was an Opel Insignia under the skin... which makes it a Buick Regal. Although there are several changes from the Regal to the Malibu.

  • RRocket RRocket on Oct 05, 2011

    As with most current GMs, I bet this one will be heavier than the competition. And with only a 4 banger to move it?? Yikes....

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    • 86er 86er on Oct 05, 2011

      @krhodes1 Certainly, but who is going to rev their Malibu, or any other grocery getter, up to 65 or 7k rpm? There's torque, and then there's usable torque. Needless to say, peak torque on a diesel is going to be realized at a far lower rpm than a 4 cylinder gas motor pulling along a 3500-4000 lb car.

  • TriShield TriShield on Oct 05, 2011

    The new Malibu is the Chevrolet version of the new Buick Regal, which is a rebadged Opel Insignia. The Malibu has the same dimensions inside and out as the Buick and Opel and will have the same ride and handling balance. If you've driven the new Regal, you've driven this car.

    • See 1 previous
    • Steven02 Steven02 on Oct 05, 2011

      Inside it doesn't have the same dimensions of the Regal. I have read reviews and comments from GM that the Malibu is a bit larger inside than the Regal.