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The Exact Bolt Pattern Of All Chevy Malibu

We’ve written extensively about the Chevy Malibu and numerous questions you can have about this car. Today, we’re going to talk about the information you need to have in order to select the correct new tires or rims for your Malibu. Specifically, we’ll take a look at the bolt pattern for each generation. Let’s start with a quick answer:

Chevy Malibu manufactured between 2000 – 2003 and 2016 – Present-day have a bolt pattern of 5 x 4.53″ (5x115mm). Between 2004 – 2012 the Malibu had a bolt pattern of 5 x 4.33″ (5x110mm) and between 2013 – 2015 Malibu had a bolt pattern of 5 x 4.72″ (5x120mm).

However, that certainly doesn’t tell the whole story. Below we’ve outlined the bolt pattern in more detail for each generation. We also discuss what lugs/bolts are used precisely, the exact diameter of the center bore hub, and the torque specifications of the bolts. Finally, we also have information about the exact tire size and rim size used for each engine type. This way, you should know precisely what you can and cannot buy. Read on!

Also read: How Many Miles Can A Chevy Malibu Last? (Answered)

Wheel Fitment Specifications Per Generation

To fit a wheel properly on your Malibu, you’ll need to know more aspects than just the bolt pattern. Below we’ve outlined all the factors you should be aware of for each generation of the Malibu. These include: center bore diameter, wheel tightening torque, whether lug nuts or bolts are used, and the thread size of the bolts.

We also want to clarify that the below-listed specifications are the same for all models within that generation. The Malibu, of course, comes in different trim levels and engine options. However, these bolt patterns, lugs used, and torque specifications do not change for other models within a generation.

Furthermore, we also listed the exact tire and rim size used with each engine option to give you a precise idea of what tires you can and cannot buy.

2016 – Present-day

Chevy Malibu, manufactured between 2016 – present-day, have a bolt pattern of 5 x 4.53″ (5x115mm). Furthermore, the wheel should have a center bore of 70.3mm, and five lug nuts are used with a thread size of M12 x 1.5. These lug nuts should be tightened with 140Nm of torque.

  • 1.5 L Turbo Malibu from this generation have a standard tire size of 205/65R16 and a rim size of 6.5Jx16 ET40 or 7Jx16 ET40 (2019 onwards).
  • 1.8 L Malibu have a standard tire size of 225/55R17 and a rim size of 7.5Jx17 ET45.
  • 2.0 L Turbo Malibu have a standard tire size of 245/40ZR19 and a rim size of 8.5Jx19 ET49 or 8.5Jx19 ET41.

2013 – 2015

Chevy Malibu, manufactured between 2013 – 2015, have a bolt pattern of 5 x 4.72″ (5x120mm). Furthermore, the wheel should have a center bore of 67.1mm, and five lug nuts are used with a thread size of M14 x 1.5. These lug nuts should be tightened with 150Nm of force.

  • 2.0 L Turbo Malibu from this generation have a standard tire size of 235/50R18 with a rim size of 8Jx18 and a positive offset of 42mm.
  • 2.4 L Malibu have a standard tire size of 225/55R17 with a rim size of 8Jx17 and a positive offset of 41mm. 2.5 L Malibu have a standard tire size of 215/60R16 with a rim size of 7.5Jx16 and a positive offset of 41mm

2004 – 2012

Chevy Malibu, manufactured between 2004 – 2012, have a bolt pattern of 5 x 4.33″ (5x110mm). Furthermore, the wheel should have a center bore of 65.1mm, and five lug nuts are used with a thread size of M12 x 1.5. These lug nuts should be tightened with 140Nm of force.

  • 2.2L Malibu have a standard tire size of 205/65R15 with a rim size of 6.5Jx15 ET41.
  • 2.4L Malibu from this generation have a standard tire size of 215/60R16, 215/55R17, 225/50R17, or 225/50R18 with a rim size of 6.5Jx16 ET41, 7Jx17 ET38, 7Jx17 ET38, or 7Jx18 ET41.
  • 3.5 L Malibu have a standard tire size of 205/65R15 or 215/60R16 with a rim size of 6.5Jx15 ET41 for both of them.
  • 3.6 L Malibu have a standard tire size of 225/50R17 or 225/50R18 with a rim size of 7Jx17 ET38 or 7Jx18 ET41

Also read: Types Of Gas A Chevy Malibu Uses (All Generations)

2000 – 2003

Chevy Malibu manufactured between 2000 – 2003 have a bolt pattern of 5 x 4.53″ (5x115mm). Furthermore, the wheel should have a center bore of 70.3mm and five lug nuts are used that have a thread size of M12 x 1.5. These lug nuts should be tightened with 140Nm of force.

  • 3.1 L Malibu from this generation have standard tire size of 215/60R15 with a rim size of 6Jx15 ET42.

Retightening The Bolts

As you saw above all generations of Malibu have a total of five lug nuts that need to be secured. Once your wheel has been replaced it’s important to tighten these lugs in the proper way. In the owner’s manual of the Malibu, it’s stated that these lug nuts should be tightened in a crisscross sequence as shown in the image below.

You do this by tightening all the nuts with a wheel wrench first. I like this wrench on Amazon in particular because it fits all bolt sizes for cars and trucks and is quite affordable. Please make sure only to tighten them halfway; otherwise, you’ll run into problems.

In the second round, you tighten them all fully. This will make sure that all lug nuts are put on evenly. You should tighten the wheel lugs to the exact Nm that has been stated earlier.

Furthermore, it’s very likely that your wheel has a cover or center cap. After tightening all the bolts this should be tightened as well. Tighten all five plastic caps hand snug, then, tighten them with the wheel wrench an additional one-quarter turn.

Finally, you should carry out one more safety check after 30 miles (48 kilometers). Make sure that all the lug nuts are still secured in place and that the right pressure is still applied to them. If not, tighten the bolts again and recheck them again after the same number of miles.

When Or Why To Rotate/Change Tires

If you’re looking to replace your tires it’s also important to know exactly when to rotate and when to change tires. Changing a tire should happen every time the thread wear indicators become visible as indicated in the image below. This happens when the tires have only 1.6 mm (1/16 in) or less of thread remaining. With most tires of the Chevy Malibu this means they will need to be replaced every 60,000 – 75,000 miles or 4-5 years

Also read: How Well Does A Chevy Malibu Drive In The Snow? (Answered).

Another moment when you’ll need to take off the lug nuts of the wheels or when you need to replace tires is when you’re rotating them. In the owner’s manual of the Chevy Malibu, it’s stated that tires should be rotated every 7,500 miles (12,000 kilometers). Furthermore, it’s advised that you rotate the tires in the exact way that’s shown in the image below. You move the front tires to the rear and the back tires to the front while also switching sides.

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