The 2014 Chevy Malibu features a solid refresh over the previous model year. There were many things carried over, however, the eAssist system was not one of them. However – there’s some reasoning behind it.
Given that the base 2.5-liter I-4 motor is more efficient with its standard start/stop technology, it more or less eclipsed the fuel economy numbers of the 2.4L eAssist Malibu Eco, while being more cost effective and more affordable for consumers in the process.
Despite the Malibu Eco’s powertrain being phased out of the lineup, the “Eco” name will be brought over to the base 2.5 model. All changes considered, the fuel economy goes up from 22 mpg city and 34 highway, to 25 mpg city and 36 mpg highway. Those combined numbers are nearly on par with the eAssist 2013 Malibu Eco, which was EPA-rated for 25/37 mpg.
So when will the eAssist return to the lineup? Probably after a little off-season surgery. Chevy reps don’t exactly have a comment on a real date, but did state that eAssist technology still has a place in the GM family going forward. And to clarify, the eAssist-powered Buick LaCrosse and Regal models will continue as normal.