1997 Chevrolet Malibu from North America


Full of problems


New water pump, serpentine belt, brake system at 65k.

A/C controls do not work properly.

Intermittent noises in the dash.

ABS brake light on and off, skips at 5 mph.

New compressor at 70k - clutch being worn due to electrical problem in the console that causes the A/C to come on and shut off over and over if on level 3 or higher.

4 sets of brake pads - 3 sets of rotors.

Electrical system in the console is problematic.

Anti-theft comes on without warning and you have to wait ten minutes to start the car.

General Comments:

I was very happy with the Malibu for all of two weeks, which is when the water pump failed. Within the first year of ownership I paid more than 4k for repairs.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 2nd December, 2002

1997 Chevrolet Malibu sedan V6 3.1 from North America




Everything, I am so tired of buying the shittiest cars ever.

I never replaced anything because I didn't feel like putting out that kind of money, but the brakes were bad when I got it, the engine was bad had something to do with the intake and exhaust manifolds. There was something to do with the coolant that didn't help the intake situation.

3.1 engines are known for blowing head gaskets and valves. Bad idea very expensive to fix.

General Comments:

I am glad I got out of that car while I still could it was a constant headache, I was stressed out on whether I was going to make it to school and work or not. I drive over 60 miles a day, I need something that I can rely on that gets good gas mileage, this car got very bad gas mileage for the engine. Approximately 10-15 mpg, probably due to the engine failure.

I would say get out now, its just going to cost you more money than it is worth, I suggest that you find another car, maybe an Oldsmobile, Honda, or Toyota. They are great cars and Subaru, some Fords, most Chevy's. A car is as good as its driver, and maintenance unless it's a Malibu, no matter how much maintenance you do on the car something still goes wrong.

For all of you who own Chevrolet Malibu's Good Luck!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 28th October, 2002

20th Mar 2003, 15:21

I have to say, you are absolutely right about the Malibu, This car has given me nothing but problems. The brakes are failing, the exhaust system is bad. I have to repeatedly replace the coolant. I am so sorry I bought this vehicle. I will not buy another one. I hate the gas mileage. The paint is even peeling. My vehicle is a 1998. What a mess I got myself in.

1997 Chevrolet Malibu 3.1 V6 from North America


Great car, I love it wouldn't trade it for anything, but maybe a newer Olds


The dome light does not work.

The low coolant light comes on when it wants to no reason.

The brakes squeal.

The engine light is on all the time.

General Comments:

This is all normal, and I disagree that this car is so bad. You never see a Malibu stuck along side the road, its always Nissan's, or Plymouths, Fords, etc... I enjoy this car beyond nothing else.

My 1st car was a 1987 Cutlass Cierra Oldsmobile. If you want to hear bad then I will tell you.

-No Stereo

-no ash tray/lighter

-no speedometer

-bad tranny

-engine has almost 400,000 miles on it

-The catalytic converter is bad

-needs electrical work

-the gas gage is wrong

-steering sucks

-shakes violently when going 45+mph

-Front axle grinds when turning corners

-Spongy Brakes (but that is almost fixed we had to redo the brakes completely)

-The shocks no longer work

-driver side seat is broken

-gets bad gas mileage

-the glove box won't close.

I would like to happily say that this car is being retired soon. Surprisingly it still runs and it will be my back up car (if I ever need one). So whenever you think your Malibu is in bad shape, just remember my Oldsmobile.

By the way I used to race the Olds, that could be why it is in such bad shape, I'd take it mudding.

Overall I think that Malibu's are good cars you just need to learn how to maintain them. That would have to be the reason why the Olds is still alive.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st October, 2002

28th Oct 2002, 22:40

Wow! You mean to say that your Oldsmobile is still running. And no it is not normal for the engine or coolant light to be on you should get that checked by a professional.

6th Jun 2005, 20:38

Malibu's are great cars. I have close to 200,000 km on my 97 with the 2.4L four cylinder and is running strong. No major repairs, other than regular maintenance. (water pump, and cracked rear spring... two very common problems.) This car can go for 275,000 km easily and reliably.