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Hello everyone,,
Due to the Honda's accolades, I feel like people will shame me for even asking, but let me try to explain a little. I have been driving a 2005 Toyota Corolla for the last few years (just about to pass 150,000 miles). Want to update to a new sedan, mid sized (will have two car seats in the back for infants), my wife has an SUV so I also see this as a nicer car for us to go out in. Started looking at Malibu. They have a crazy deal right now (20% off MSRP) of the LT model. I had some down time, though, and I took a look at the Accord, and now I am torn. To keep things easy, the cars pretty much have the same features (all the lane assist type safety features on both, remote start, keyless ignition, bigger infotainment screens). However, the Accord will come out to be about $1000 more but it also has heated front seats, moonroof, led headlights. Now the real dilemma is that I like the exterior of the Malibu better. Definitely has a very high end look for an affordable price. Not really digging the Accord front. But the Accord felt a little better to drive and seemed to have a ton of room in the back for passengers (and maneuvering child seats). I can summarize this: my heart is saying Malibu, but my head is saying Accord. Honestly, I don't know much about cars. I do know that people talk about the resale value of Hondas, but I find it hard to base my choice for buying a car for what I might sell it for 5-10 years down the road. Plus I saw an article online listing the Malibu as having the best resale value of the 2018 midsize sedans. Sorry for long post, just looking for a push in the right direction, especially if anybody out there looked at or owns either car.
 

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I just purchased a 2021 Malibu Premier last week after test driving an Accord. Like you, I was torn between the two until I test drove both. My knee was rubbing right against the console on the Accord and the Malibu's smooth luxury type of ride is what sold me on the Malibu. I had a 2008 Malibu that I sold two days after buying the Premier. I’m 64 and I’m not sure if this will be my last car. I plan on doing a lot of over the road vacation travel so comfort was very important for me. The Accord IMO lacked the comfort of the Premier. I also prefer the looks of the Malibu.
 

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I have a loaded 2018 LT. Sticker was over $30000 (can't recall the exact price). A comparably equipped Accord stickered for a similar amount - I think it was around $1000 or so more then the Malibu. However, I was able to purchase the Malibu at a steep discount. I paid under $24000. Would have been lucky to manage perhaps 2 or $3000 off an Accord at the time. Ultimately, what was an almost identically equipped Malibu ended up being approximately $5,000 less than that Accord. No brainer for me. Also, have you seen the Car and Driver comparison of these cars. They gave the win to the Accord but spoke highly of the Malibu. In fact, the negatives they listed we very minor things (like the tiny gas tank which got corrected the following model year). In fact, if Car and Driver had actually looked into and used actual prices the cars could be purchased for instead of MSRP, the Malibu would have won that comparison test IMO.

Maybe things are different three years later but it seems strange to me that Honda would be discounting the Accord to nearly the degree Chevy does for the Malibu. If that's true though and you really can get a comparably equipped Accord for only $1,000 more, that's what I would do now and it's what I would have done three years ago as well.

With that said. I have 70,000 miles on the Malibu now and it's been pretty much flawless and is an outstanding road trip/work car. I drive a lot of highway miles for work and could not be happier with the car.
 

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$1000 for heated seats, moon roof, and LED headlights? Plus it's an Accord? I would go for it. I test drove an Accord and thought it drove amazing.

I ended up buying a Malibu because it also drove amazing, and was about $5000-$8000 less for the same features (I have the Premier with all available options).

If you are looking at the 1.5L, not the 2.0 Turbo, then I would even more lean towards the Accord. I have not driven the Malibu 1.5 but from what I gather it's not too exciting. The Accord 1.5 on the other hand - to me it felt like a much larger engine. They've really done a great job tuning it and the transmission.

I agree the Malibu exterior looks better. But for me at least, after owning the car for a while you get used to it and it doesn't really matter.
 

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When I swapped out of my 2017 to a 2018 I considered both the Camry and Accord. I thought the Camry and Accord both felt like heavier more planted cars. More substantial. But the media of the Malibu and general ergonomics are better. The Accords I found all had the CVT which I didn't want. The Camry 2.5 seemed loud and rough sounding but the 3.5 V6 was quiet. I was really close to buying the Camry with the 3.5 and 8 speed because of the simplicity. The 2.0 Malibu has less throttle lag and more punch between 30-70 than the 3.5 in the Camry. Still it came down to comfort and ease of controlling the car and Mali wins.
 
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