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Some similarities. Not THAT similar though. When I read your post I was thinking I would see the exact same dash or something. Actually that Malibu is a good looking car...I like the classic-corvette style dash.
 

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oops.............................
 

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Hey, they are built on the same "platform". Ditto the Saturn Aura.

I drove an Aura for the first time last week. It couldn't have driven more different than the 9-3. It had a very heavy, damped, German feel to it (not surprising, it is basically an Opel). Totally different than the light, well oiled feel of the 9-3.

I think it had the 3.5L pushrod V6. So it had similar power to the 2.0T, but of course a completely different powerband. It didn't have the turbo midrange.

So there you have it. Despite being built off the same platform, you have 2 cars that are completely different.
 

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That car looks damn good. The interior is very nice also, but I know it will feel way too plastic when you're actually in it. I love how they highlight tight body panels and reduced gaps. That's how cars are supposed to be made anyways.
 

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You know what? When the 9-5 came out and people found out it was based on the Saturn Large Sedan (L200/300) people said all the same things. As you said above, if you go drive the cars you will find that the similarities are few. Little things like window switches, etc may be shared, but overall design features are quite different.
 

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The exterior looks too much like a Buick, not particularily a fan of... but the Interior is rather striking! I LOVE the luminescent gauges and how all the leather just flows with the theme of the car...
 

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The thing is that the parts that look familiar to a Saab owner aren't Saab parts to begin with. It's just that the current 9-3's and 9-5's have more obvious GM parts. It is not a case of GM using Saab doodads on the new Malibu, it's that more GM doodads are showing up on Saab.

That stereo is used in a whole bunch of GM cars, including the 9-3, 9-5, Pontiac Solstice/Saturn Sky, the Aura, G6, etc, etc, etc. At least in 'premium' guise, it's not a bad stereo. I test drove a Saturn Sky RedLine a few months back with the 'premium' version and it was great. Really fun car in general and it's too bad Saab doesn't make a 9-1 based off of it. That steering wheel is pretty much common GM stock too, it's the similar to the one in the 9-3, and nearly identical to the one in the Corvette, Aura, etc, etc. The window & door switches look familiar too. It just goes on and on.

All in all, I think the new Malibu looks great for what it is - a mainstream, common family sedan to compete with the Camry and Accord. It looks much better than the bland-o-matic current Malibu. Honestly I think it's a pretty good looking car. I've never even thought that about a Malibu before. :lol: GM needs winners, and it looks like they put a lot more effort into the Malibu than they have in the past.

As much as it's fun to laugh and point at the Malibu, I hope they sell like hotcakes. A healthy GM means more money for Saab. Personally, I'm looking forward to the Holden/Pontiac G8. Now *that* looks like a pretty sweet car.
 

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Yup, very nice car for the price and in general. The 2 things that would prevent me from buying one would be the grill (still 100% Detroit lameness) and the name.

However for $20K - nice car...
 

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Chevrolet had the new Malibu ad in the latest Car and Driver. I thought- wow, that's a really nice looking car for 20 thousand- after reading the fine print, the "as shown" car was around 27,000- d-oh!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
True.. 27K might be a bit rich for a Malibu... but how many of us paid sticker for our Saabs?

All in all I am encouraged to see something from GM that I would give a second look.
 

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john97900S said:
True.. 27K might be a bit rich for a Malibu... but how many of us paid sticker for our Saabs?

All in all I am encouraged to see something from GM that I would give a second look.
Hard to find a great car for $27K, the Malibu comes fully loaded for that price with a 250+Hp engine, 6spd automatic, full leather, climate control, 18" wheels, and various other luxury features. I'd drive this or a Aura over the Camry or Accord anyday. Looking at the Malibu and Saturn, I think it tells me how good the all new 2011 9-3 will be as GM continues to do things right!

I'd expect a nice $4K discount on these cars after 4-months of steady production though.
 

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Thank you for posting the link. I would have otherwise just passed up looking at the new Malibu. I too found it stunning and I too hope they sell like crazy. The horse power on the 4cylinders is still lacking, at 167 HP it won't be a slouch but it could use some help.

I was also told that the Pontiac G6 shares the Saab chasis. My cousin had two recent Saabs, the latest a 2005 convert Aero, and he just traded it in for a G6 hardtop convert. He said it compares closley to his 93 convert, but has more HP and likes the overall feel of the G6. It is a very heavy vehicle and he probably won't be able to toss the G6 into the corners, but he is in his seventies and no longer worries about that.

All in all I am happy I made the dicision to get the 9-3, I love this car style wise, performance wise and overall feel.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Yeah, the Malibu is a little lite on HP, but once you get on the highway I am sure it will cruise with traffic. OR, Maybe I have low expectations. I came from a 97 900S, normally aspirated, 150HP, so to me 167 HP sounds OK. I also noticed that the grille on the Malibu looked like mesh. I wonder if we could lobby GM/Saab for one :D

I have a 2007 9-3 2.0T now... I love this car. I'm not in love with the automatic climate control, but other than that no complaints. The car is incredibly fast, sure footed, and it doesn't look like everything else on the road.

When I was shopping my final choice was between an Acura TL or the Saab. What finally did it was my experience with Saab and the price difference. A decided benefit is exclusivity. I must see 10 or more Acuras for every Saab. Who knew that you could get exclusivity for less than 30K?
 

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LaserRed9-3Aero said:
The thing is that the parts that look familiar to a Saab owner aren't Saab parts to begin with. It's just that the current 9-3's and 9-5's have more obvious GM parts. It is not a case of GM using Saab doodads on the new Malibu, it's that more GM doodads are showing up on Saab.

That stereo is used in a whole bunch of GM cars, including the 9-3, 9-5, Pontiac Solstice/Saturn Sky, the Aura, G6, etc, etc, etc. At least in 'premium' guise, it's not a bad stereo. I test drove a Saturn Sky RedLine a few months back with the 'premium' version and it was great. Really fun car in general and it's too bad Saab doesn't make a 9-1 based off of it. That steering wheel is pretty much common GM stock too, it's the similar to the one in the 9-3, and nearly identical to the one in the Corvette, Aura, etc, etc. The window & door switches look familiar too. It just goes on and on.

All in all, I think the new Malibu looks great for what it is - a mainstream, common family sedan to compete with the Camry and Accord. It looks much better than the bland-o-matic current Malibu. Honestly I think it's a pretty good looking car. I've never even thought that about a Malibu before. :lol: GM needs winners, and it looks like they put a lot more effort into the Malibu than they have in the past.

As much as it's fun to laugh and point at the Malibu, I hope they sell like hotcakes. A healthy GM means more money for Saab. Personally, I'm looking forward to the Holden/Pontiac G8. Now *that* looks like a pretty sweet car.
Well said, and I agree! :D
 

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Fmr12B said:
Looking at the Malibu and Saturn, I think it tells me how good the all new 2011 9-3 will be as GM continues to do things right!
That is precisely what I am thinking too. GM seems to have found a bit of momentum in the past year or so. I hope they keep it up, and some of that energy and excitement filters its way across the pond to Trollhatten. The 9-3 Black Aero is an indication that maybe it has...
 

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Wife has a Malibu Maxx V6 which is based on the epsilon platform (Saab 9-3). Other than some basic suspension components the cars are complete opposites.

I guess you could say a Yugo is the same as a Mercedes because both have glass, metal, iron, plastic and rubber.

Anyone who thinks cars are the same because they are based on the same platform is sorely mistaken. The Maxx's brakes, shocks, struts, welds, interior components, engine parts are all lower grade. You really do get what you pay for. Do you think they are giving away Malibu's for charity? No...its because the profit margin is high on cheapo parts.
 
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