New Holden Malibu revealed in Chevrolet form

Holden’s new medium-sized sedan, the Malibu, has made its international debut at the Shanghai Auto Show amid much anticipation.

The reveal, conducted by Chevrolet, saw the veil lifted on the new-generation model that will be sold in up to 100 countries including Australia next year. A decision has not yet been made on whether the Malibu will be sold here in New Zealand. If it is, the Malibu will replace the unpopular Epica in Holden’s lineup and will compete against segment heavyweights like the Ford Mondeo and Mazda6.

The Mailbu will be powered by a range of 4-cylinder engines, with more details to be released shortly. Over in the States the Malibu will be offered with a new direct-injected 2.5 litre four-cylinder Ecotec petrol engine producing 141kW and 245Nm of torque.

The exterior design has taken inspiration from Chevrolet’s iconic Camaro muscle car and also some styling cues from the Cruze. The wide stance, twin exhaust tips and integrated spoiler give it strong road presence.

Inside, a dual cockpit interior includes a touchscreen and Camaro-styled instrumentation. There’s blue illumination and light blue stitching and woodgrain trim also featured on the show vehicle.

Standard safety specificationl includes dual-stage front airbags for the driver and front passenger, along with pelvic/thorax side-impact and knee airbags up front. Roof rail airbags with rollover protection will also be a hidden feature.

Holden New Zealand Managing Director, Simon Carr said Malibu can’t help but reflect the same focus on quality and advanced technology as seen in the globally successful Cruze.

“We think this car will be a big hit no matter where it lands. From the Camaro-inspired exterior design and sleek interior to the dynamic performance capabilities, it’s clearly another great example of the sophistication we’re building into our new-generation global vehicles.

“The Malibu offers high-performing fuel-efficient engines, a high level of safety and a range of features and technologies that will appeal to customers in the competitive mid-size segment.”

Expect to hear more details about the Malibu soon, including the decision on weather it will be made available to the NZ market in 2012.

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