2019 Mercedes A-Class vs. 2019 Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The A-Class offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The A-Class offers an optional Surround View System to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Malibu Hybrid only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

The A-Class’ driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the A-Class and the Malibu Hybrid have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front and rear side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available lane departure warning systems and blind spot warning systems.

Warranty

The A-Class comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Malibu Hybrid’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

The A-Class’ corrosion warranty is unlimited miles longer than the Malibu Hybrid’s (unlimited vs. 100,000 miles).

Reliability

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Mercedes vehicles are more reliable than Chevrolet vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Mercedes 6 places higher in reliability than Chevrolet.

Engine

The A-Class’ 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 6 more horsepower (188 vs. 182) than the Malibu Hybrid’s 1.8 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid.

As tested in Car and Driver the A 220 is faster than the Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid:

 

A-Class

Malibu

Zero to 60 MPH

6.1 sec

7.4 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

16.9 sec

20.4 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

6.8 sec

7.4 sec

Quarter Mile

14.7 sec

15.7 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

94 MPH

90 MPH

Top Speed

132 MPH

100 MPH

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the A-Class’ brake rotors are larger than those on the Malibu Hybrid:

 

A-Class

Malibu

Front Rotors

12.6 inches

11.8 inches

Rear Rotors

11.6 inches

11.3 inches

The A-Class stops much shorter than the Malibu Hybrid:

 

A-Class

Malibu

 

70 to 0 MPH

153 feet

181 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the A-Class offers optional 19-inch wheels. The Malibu Hybrid’s largest wheels are only 17-inches.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires available on the A-Class can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

The A-Class offers an optional driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads. The Malibu Hybrid’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

The A-Class has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

The A-Class’ drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

The A 220 4MATIC handles at .95 G’s, while the Malibu Hybrid pulls only .84 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

For better maneuverability, the A-Class’ turning circle is .9 feet tighter than the Malibu Hybrid’s (36.1 feet vs. 37 feet).

Chassis

The A-Class is 1 foot, 3.1 inches shorter than the Malibu Hybrid, making the A-Class easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

The A-Class has 1.2 inches more front headroom and .3 inches more front legroom than the Malibu Hybrid.

Cargo Capacity

To allow full utilization of available cargo room, the A-Class’ trunk lid uses concealed beam hinges that don’t intrude into the trunk. Its intrusive beam hinge reduces the Malibu Hybrid’s useful trunk space.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the A-Class’ available trunk can be opened just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Servicing Ease

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Mercedes service is better than Chevrolet. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 6th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 19% lower rating, Chevrolet is ranked 10th.

Ergonomics

When three different drivers share the A-Class, the memory seats and mirrors make it convenient for all three. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver and front passenger’s seat positions and outside mirror angle. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer a memory system.

The A-Class offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and navigation instruction readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The A-Class’ rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Malibu Hybrid’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the A-Class offers optional cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer cornering lights. The A-Class also offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle.

The A-Class offers optional automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Malibu Hybrid offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the A-Class keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the A-Class’ optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the A-Class offers an optional Distronic, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

The A-Class’ optional Active Parking Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Malibu Hybrid doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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