2004 Chevrolet Malibu

midsize car / 4-door sedan

2004 Chevrolet Malibu 4-door sedan

Crashworthiness

Rating overview
Moderate overlap front
Side with optional side airbags
Side without optional side airbags
Head restraints & seats

Other available safety features

  • Standard daytime running lights

Key

  • G
    Good
  • A
    Acceptable
  • M
    Marginal
  • P
    Poor
  • Superior
  • Advanced
  • Basic

Some ratings use a scale of Poor to Good. Others range from Basic to Superior.

Moderate overlap front

Rating applies to 2004-07 models

Tested vehicle: 2004 Chevrolet Malibu LS 4-door

The Chevrolet Malibu was redesigned for the 2004 model year. The earlier design remained in production through the 2005 model year, but was called the Chevrolet Classic and was sold only to fleets.

Overall evaluation
Structure and safety cage
Injury measures
Head/neck
Chest
Leg/foot, left
Leg/foot, right
Restraints and dummy kinematics

Action shot taken during the frontal offset crash test.

The dummy's position in relation to the steering wheel and instrument panel after the crash test indicates that the driver's survival space was maintained very well.

A high head acceleration occurred when the dummy's head bottomed out the airbag and hit the steering wheel.

Forces on the right foot were just high enough to indicate the possibility of injury.

Side

Rating applies to 2004 models built after February 2004

Tested vehicle: 2004 Chevrolet Malibu LS 4-door with optional front and rear head curtain airbags

The Chevrolet Malibu was redesigned for the 2004 model year. The earlier design remained in production through the 2005 model year, but was called the Chevrolet Classic and was sold only to fleets.

All 2004 and later Malibu models manufactured after February 2004 include front door trim panel changes to improve occupant protection in side-impact crashes in cars equipped with optional side airbags (note: information about when a specific vehicle was manufactured is on the certification label typically affixed to the car on or near the driver door). A further change was made beginning with 2005 models -- side airbags designed to protect drivers' and front passengers' torsos were added to the optional side curtain airbags available in 2004.

Two tests of a 2004 Malibu were conducted, one with an optional side curtain airbag for the driver and rear passenger, and one without. A third test of a Malibu, a 2005 model, was conducted because of the side airbag change. These three Malibus are rated separately, except that the structural ratings for the three vehicles are based on all three tests, and the rear passenger injury and head protection ratings are based on the two tests with side airbags.

Overall evaluation
Structure and safety cage
Driver injury measures
Head/neck
Torso
Pelvis/leg
Head protection
Rear passenger injury measures
Head/neck
Torso
Pelvis/leg
Head protection

View of the vehicle and barrier just after the crash test.

View of the vehicle after the crash with doors removed, showing the side airbag and damage to the occupant compartment.

Action shot taken during the side impact crash test showing the driver dummy's head was protected from being hit by hard structures by the side curtain airbag.

Smeared greasepaint shows where the rear passenger dummy's head was protected by the side airbag.

Rating applies to 2004-06 models

Tested vehicle: 2004 Chevrolet Malibu LS 4-door without optional side airbags

The Chevrolet Malibu was redesigned for the 2004 model year. The earlier design remained in production through the 2005 model year, but was called the Chevrolet Classic and was sold only to fleets.

All 2004-06 Malibu models manufactured after February 2004 include front door trim panel changes to improve occupant protection in side-impact crashes. (Chevrolet reported that these door trim panel changes would not significantly affect side-impact performance in models without side airbags; therefore the overall side impact rating for all 2004 and later models without side airbags is the same.)

Two tests of a 2004 Malibu were conducted, one with an optional side airbag for the driver and rear passenger, and one without. A third test of a Malibu, a 2005 model, was conducted because the side airbags were changed beginning with 2005 models. These three Malibus are rated separately, except that the structural ratings for the three vehicles are based on all three tests.

Beginning with 2007 models, side curtain airbags designed to protect drivers' and front and rear passengers' heads became standard, but side airbags designed to protect drivers' and front passengers' torsos remained optional.

Overall evaluation
Structure and safety cage
Driver injury measures
Head/neck
Torso
Pelvis/leg
Head protection
Rear passenger injury measures
Head/neck
Torso
Pelvis/leg
Head protection

View of the vehicle and barrier just after the crash test.

View of the vehicle after the crash with doors removed, showing damage to the occupant compartment.

Action shot taken during the side impact crash test showing the driver dummy's head being hit by the intruding barrier.

Smeared greasepaint indicates where the driver dummy's head hit the barrier.

Head restraints & seats

Rating applies to 2004-07 models

Seat type: All seats

Overall evaluation
Dynamic rating
Seat/head restraint geometry