General Motors has announced that there will be no retail production of the Chevrolet Malibu hybrid for model year (MY) 2010 due to “elevated inventory levels of the 2009 model.” A limited amount of 2010 Malibu hybrids may be produced to fulfill fleet sales requests.
|2008 Malibu hybrid. Click to enlarge.|
Service and warranty of existing Malibu hybrids will be unaffected by the decision, as the company has an adequate supply of replacement components, including the 36/42V battery packs.
The Malibu hybrid shares components with two other GM mild hybrids: the Saturn Aura and Vue hybrids. Although GM is committed to delivering MY 2010 Saturn Aura and Vue vehicles as part of its Memorandum of Understanding with Saturn buyer Penske Automotive Group, no decision has been made as to whether or not hybrid variants of those two vehicles will be offered for that year.
GM’s next-generation mild hybrid system, which was announced in 2008 (earlier post), is scheduled to debut in MY 2011, powered by a lithium-ion battery from Hitachi Vehicle Energy Ltd (HVE). Hitachi Automotive Products produced the integrated starter-generators and the power electronics for GM’s 2007-2009 mild hybrids.