If we asked you to name a track-worthy sport sedan, chances are good you’d pick the BMW M5, the Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG or possibly even the Cadillac CTS-V. Further down the list, we suppose even a Volvo S60 or Ford Taurus SHO could make the cut-off, but one car we’d never expect to see picked is the 2013 Chevrolet Malibu.
It’s not that the Malibu is a bad choice of sedan, it’s just that it never fit our criteria for sporty, let alone track-ready. Its prowess as a affordable and relatively fuel-efficient family sedan, however, remains beyond reproach.
Now Chevy is hoping that driving enthusiasts will give the Malibu a second glance with the pending launch of the 259-horsepower Malibu Turbo sedan. According to Mark Meyers, GM global vehicle performance manager, the Malibu Turbo will sprint from 0-60 mph in only 6.3 seconds, on the way to a (potential) top speed of 155 mph.
We say potential, because the raised speed limit requires the optional 19-inch wheels and performance tires. Stick with the standard 18-inch wheels, and we’ll bet the top speed is limited to 135 miles per hour. In either case, we doubt the Malibu Turbo will be the weapon of choice for adding to your autocross trophy collection.
While the Malibu Turbo may not meet our expectations as a sport sedan, we’re sure it will deliver more entertainment value and better fuel economy than the outgoing Malibu V-6, which is an important consideration when shopping for a budget-minded family sedan.
Look for the 2013 Chevrolet Malibu Turbo to hit dealerships this fall, at prices starting (just) under $28,000.