When the Chevrolet Malibu nameplate first made its debut, gas was around 30 cents a gallon in 1964, versus being around 10 times that, 50 years later. Cars were mostly RWD, the Beatles came to the U.S. from Liverpool, and Astroturf wouldn’t be around for another year.
In short, the Chevy Malibu has seen a lot. Back in the early 60’s, the Malibu was one of the early midsize sedans available in the U.S. market, and Chevy’s first intermediate one. Surely it looked a bit more nostalgic, but we’ll take the better mileage, refinement, and safety in lieu.
And chew on this little factoid: the 2014 Malibu’s standard 2.5L four-cylinder engine puts out 65 percent more horsepower than the original Malibu’s standard 3.2L six-cylinder. My, how things change over 8 generations of delicious, vehicular evolution.
1964 Malibu vs 2014 Malibu
|1964 Malibu||2014 Malibu|
|Drivetrain layout:||rear-wheel drive||front-wheel drive|
|Wheelbase:||115 in.||107.8 in.|
|Overall length:||193.9 in.||191.5 in.|
|Overall width:||74.6 in.||73 in.|
|Curb weight:||2870 lbs.||3393 lbs.|
|Standard engine:||3.2L inline-six||2.5L inline-four|
|Valvetrain:||cam-in-block with pushrods||DOHC with variable valve timing and variable valve lift control|
|Fuel delivery:||one single-barrel carburetor||direct fuel injection|
|Transmission:||3-speed manual (std.); 2-speed automatic (opt.)||6-speed automatic|
|Brakes:||four-wheel drum||four-wheel disc with ABS|
|Steering:||recirculating ball (non-assisted); power-assist (opt.)||electric power-assisted rack-and-pinion|
|Wheel size:||14 x 6.5-in. (std.)||16 x 7.5-in. (std.)|
|Infotainment:||AM radio||Chevrolet MyLink|
|Safety:||optional safety belts||10 standard air bags|
|StabiliTrak stability control:||unavailable||Standard|