Chevrolet Malibu 1964 to 1977
The Malibu started out as a high end Chevelle from 1964 until 1972. You had a choice of a multitude of different interior designs with a full range of body styles including a two seat wagon, two door coupe, four door sedan, convertible, and hardtop. The 1964 Malibu SS came as a sport coupe only and was equipped with the top engine offered at 350 horse power. In 1966 the power engine offer was kicked up a notch with the introduction of SS-396 series, the SS designation was now synonymous with a big block motor and power. The 396 cu in (6.5 L) V8 SS as the standard power plant or you could special order a smaller V8 or any six cylinder available at the time. Bucket seats with a console and floor shift were available as an option.
You could order a four door model in 1966 if you were a family man. The bodies on the Malibu became more rounded as with all cars in the Chevrolet line up. The two door coupe had sail panels and tunneled rear windows as a distinctive featured item. In 1967 the body styles remained the same with a few changes to the grill, tail section, and the tail lights which wrapped around the rear quarter panel. The 1967 cars offered front disc brakes and an 8 track tape player (what’s that?) as optional equipment. The power house engine was changed to a 327 cu in (5.4 L) that put out 325 horse power and went from o – 60 in 6.2 seconds.
The second generation Malibu as with the other Chevelles was completely restyled in 1968 with a semi-fastback on the coupe. The tail lights were moved into the bumper and only the Malibu sported a new grill. The wheelbases were split as well – the two door coupe had a 112” between the wheels and the other models had 116” wheel base. Chevy introduced a new engine, a 307 cu in (5.0 L) V8 rated at 200 horse power to replace the 283 which was the standard offering until then. The SS models could be had with a 454 to get away from the stop light a bit quicker all the engines including the six cylinder model and small block V8 could now be ordered with the three speed Turbo Hydra-Matic transmission. The interior had a new dash styling including round instruments surrounded by a wood grain dash, wood grain door panels with carpeted bottoms similar to the other models in the line-up. The ignition switch was moved from the dash to the steering column with cloth or vinyl seats as the base offer including head rests in front in order to conform to new safety regulations. Also to conform to new regulations all 1975 and newer, cars would run on unleaded fuel and be equipped with a catalytic converter.
In 1973 Malibu became a model in its own right; Chevelle deluxe was entry level, mid-range was Malibu, and top of the list became a Laguna with the S-3 replacing the SS designation in 1966. The Laguna had an eye catching four square head light arrangement in 1977 models.