December 3, 2012
DETROIT -- General Motors engineers are hurrying to complete a midcycle refresh of the Chevrolet Malibu for release by late next year, about 18 months after the redesigned sedan's launch, CEO Dan Akerson said.
The move comes amid soft early sales of the car and unflattering media reviews. Some dealers also have questioned whether the Malibu can stand out in the cutthroat mid-sized sedan market.
"We are going to do a midcycle enhancement, not dramatic, by this time next year," Akerson told Automotive News last week. He said the changes would include a new front fascia but declined to elaborate.
Such face-lifts typically come about three years after a car's launch. Akerson acknowledged the unflattering reviews and said that the refresh is taking place sooner than had been planned.
"I think it's a good car. It'll do OK," Akerson said. "It is a tough segment and it's one we need to be successful in. We'll see how it plays out."