The Malibu comes with free roadside assistance for 5 years 100,000 miles. Chevrolet will send help if you run out of gas, need a jump start, lock your keys in or need any assistance on the road. Honda doesn't give free roadside assistance for the Accord Sedan.
Chevrolet's powertrain warranty covers the Malibu 40,000 miles longer than Honda covers the Accord Sedan. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the Accord Sedan ends after only 5 years or 60,000 miles.
The Malibu's corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the Accord Sedan's (6 vs. 5 years).
There are over 4 times as many Chevrolet dealers as there are Honda dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Malibu's warranty.
For enhanced safety, the front shoulder belts of the Chevrolet Malibu are height-adjustable, and the rear seat shoulder belts have child comfort guides to move the belt to properly fit children. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages children to buckle up. The Honda Accord Sedan has only front height-adjustable seat belts.
Both the Malibu and Accord Sedan have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Malibu has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Accord Sedan's child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can't know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.
The Malibu has standard OnStar®, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to get turn-by-turn driving directions, remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in, help track down your vehicle if it's stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Accord Sedan doesn't offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you're involved in an accident and you're incapacitated help may not come as quickly.
Both the Malibu and the Accord Sedan have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control and electronic stability systems to prevent skidding.
For its top level performance in frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rates the Malibu as a "Top Pick" for 2012, a rating only granted to 137 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Accord Sedan has not been tested, yet.
For better stopping power the Malibu's brake rotors are larger than those on the Accord Sedan:
The Malibu stops much shorter than the Accord Sedan:
For better traction, the Malibu has larger standard tires than the Accord Sedan (215/60R16 vs. 205/65R16).
The Malibu's standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Accord Sedan LX's standard 65 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Malibu LTZ offers optional 19-inch wheels. The Accord Sedan's largest wheels are only 18-inches.
The Malibu 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 Accord Sedan doesn't offer variable-assist power steering.
The Malibu's front to rear weight distribution is more even (59.2% to 40.8%) than the Accord Sedan's (60.9% to 39.1%). This gives the Malibu more stable handling and braking.
For better maneuverability, the Malibu's turning circle is .7 feet tighter than the Accord Sedan's (37.4 feet vs. 38.1 feet). The Malibu's turning circle is 2.2 feet tighter than the Accord Sedan Sport's (37.4 feet vs. 39.6 feet).
The front grille of the Malibu ECO/LS/3LT uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Accord Sedan doesn't offer active grille shutters.
As tested by Car and Driver while under full throttle, the interior of the Malibu Eco is quieter than the Accord Sedan EX (73 vs. 75 dB).
The Malibu has a larger trunk than the Accord Sedan (16.3 vs. 15.8 cubic feet).
To allow full utilization of available cargo room, the Malibu's trunk lid uses concealed beam hinges that don't intrude into the trunk. The Accord Sedan's useful trunk space is reduced by its intrusive beam hinge.
The Malibu's standard folding rear seats are split to accommodate bulky cargo. The Accord Sedan's standard single piece folding rear seat is not as flexible; long cargo and a passenger can't share the rear seat.
The Malibu Eco/LTZ's optional easy entry system glides the driver's seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Accord Sedan doesn't offer an easy entry system.
The power windows standard on both the Malibu and the Accord Sedan have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Malibu is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Accord Sedan prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.
The Malibu's standard front and rear power windows all lower with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Accord Sedan's power windows' passenger windows don't open automatically. The Accord Sedan EX/EX-L/Touring's rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to lower them fully.
The Malibu LT/LTZ offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet in the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters, which can break or get misplaced. The Accord Sedan doesn't offer a house-current electrical outlet.
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Based on 2012/2013 EPA mileage estimates, reflecting new EPA fuel economy methods beginning with 2008 models. Use for comparison purposes only. Do not compare to models before 2008. Your actual mileage will vary depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle.
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