Next time you hit Google, Chevrolet would appreciate it if you looked up the 2013 Malibu instead of your ex. Last week, the automaker said that it lowered the Malibu’s price in hopes of cultivating a better presence on the Internet.
“We did it in order to try to generate more potential traffic on the car both on the websites as well as dealers but I can’t tell you that January itself was a big change just because of that,” says Russ Clark, director of Chevrolet marketing in an interview with Bloomberg. “It recognizes the competitiveness of the segment and ensures that we remain on the shopping list.”
Chevrolet slashed $345 off the price of the base Malibu LS, which now starts at $21,995 before an $810 destination charge. Malibu 2LT and 3LT trims see a price reduction of $300 each, while the Malibu LTZ and 1LT shave $415 and $770 off their base prices, respectively.
The Detroit Free Press reports that affordable midsize cars like the Ford Fusion, Honda Accord, Hyundai Sonata, Nissan Altima and Toyota Camry have been tough competitors for the Malibu, despite an increase of 3.3 percent in Malibu sales last year. In an email, Chevrolet Spokesman Michael Albano tells the Detroit Free Press that the automaker believes “a change like this will bring additional potential buyers into Chevrolet showrooms and increase consideration levels for the car.”
A quick look at our compare tool confirms that the Malibu’s base price now undercuts the Camry by $240, while the higher-ranking Ford Fusion is cheaper still with a starting price of $21,700. However, the move might still give the Malibu a sales advantage on the Internet when car shoppers search by price. Automobile Magazine writes, “On the off chance consumers tell a car-buying site they want something that starts at less than $22,000, they’ll see photos of the Malibu and none of the Camry.”
Shopping for a Chevrolet Malibu or another affordable midsize car? Check out the U.S. News rankings of this year's best cars. Then, look for a great deal on a new car by checking out this month’s best car deals. Also, be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook.