Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Associate Editor
12/10/13 12:00 a.m.
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The Malibu, a staple of Chevy's lineup for generations, is receiving a total redo for the 2013 model year. The first one to come our way is powered by their Eco powertain.

The Malibu Eco is what's called a mild hybrid, meaning it has a small electric motor to assist the larger gasoline motor during demanding driving, or at very low speeds where very little power is required. This Malibu's electric motor takes the place of a traditional car's alternator, and is mated to a 2.4 liter gasoline engine. At full throttle, the little electric motor provides an additional 15 horsepower and 79 foot-pounds of torque. Unlike a full hybrid, the Malibu cannot run solely on its electric motor.

Interestingly, the Eco package brings with it a few upgrades that would be at home on the racetrack- an aluminum hood, an aluminum rear bumper beam, and lighter interior materials. These measures combine to save 130 pounds.

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