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Boost Your 2024 Chevy Malibu’s Performance With These Air Intake Upgrades

Why a Cold Air Intake is Beneficial for Your Malibu

If you’re a proud owner of the sleek and stylish 2024 Chevy Malibu, you know this sedan delivers comfort, efficiency, and practicality. But like any automobile enthusiast, you may be looking for ways to enhance your ride’s performance. One of the easiest and most effective mods you can make is to upgrade the factory air intake with a cold air intake (CAI). Keep reading to understand why a CAI can give your Malibu a boost and which systems deliver the most horsepower and torque gains.

What Does the Air Intake Do?

The engine air intake is responsible for funneling outside air into the engine. This air is mixed with fuel for combustion. Engines need a robust supply of cool, dense air to create an optimal air/fuel ratio. The cooler and denser the intake air, the more oxygen molecules it contains. More oxygen allows for more fuel, resulting in a bigger combustion event in the cylinder and more horsepower.

The factory air intake on your 2024 Malibu was designed primarily for fuel efficiency, quietness, and emissions – not maximum performance. These restrictive stock air boxes force the engine to work harder to suck in air through all those baffles and sound-deadening materials.

Benefits of a Cold Air Intake

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Aftermarket cold air intakes are designed and engineered to allow smoother, cooler airflow to your Malibu’s engine. Here are some key benefits you’ll see after installing a CAI:

  • Increased horsepower – More airflow and denser air equals bigger combustion events.
  • Improved throttle response – Less restrictive intake path means quicker spool up.
  • Enhanced torque – More low end grunt makes your Malibu feel more muscular.
  • Better efficiency – Cooler air intake temperatures help optimize fuel mileage.
  • Awesome engine sound – Hear the power under your hood.

Choosing the Best Intake for Your Malibu

The most popular manufacturers of cold air intakes for the 2024 Chevy Malibu include:

The K&N 77-3082TT air intake system uses a large, washable cotton filter surrounded by a heat shield to pull in cool external air. This kit can add 19 horsepower while decreasing air intake temps by up to 30%.

The AEM 21-8182C air intake uses a roto-molded polyethylene airbox and polyurethane intake tube to smooth airflow. Dyno tests show gains of 14 hp and 15 ft-lbs of torque.

This universal cold air intake uses a conical filter in a custom heat shield assembly. The aluminum piping ensures smooth delivery of cooler air to the throttle body. Expect gains of 7-10 hp.

No matter which brand you choose, a cold air intake is one of the simplest ways to unleash some extra muscle from your Malibu’s turbo 2.0L engine. Just be sure to get a CARB-legal system to avoid any check engine lights or issues passing state emissions tests.

With a quality CAI kit installed, you’ll enjoy increased acceleration, more low-end power, and an aggressive intake growl. Your ride will feel quicker and more responsive across the RPM range. And you can check out your handiwork every time you pop the hood!

Top-Rated Cold Air Intakes for the 2024 Malibu

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The 2024 Chevy Malibu looks sharp rolling down the street, but many owners are searching for ways to make their sedan a little more special under the hood. One of the best bang-for-your-buck upgrades is installing a performance cold air intake system. A quality CAI can provide noticeable gains in horsepower and torque by reducing air restriction and feeding cooler, denser air to the turbo engine. Let’s take a look at some of the top-rated kits that Malibu enthusiasts are choosing to unlock more muscle from their rides.

K&N 77 Series Intake

When it comes to air intakes, K&N is one of the most trusted names in the business. Their 77-3082TT Typhoon intake kit is specially engineered to boost airflow in the Malibu’s 2.0L turbo motor. This system uses a large, free-flowing conical air filter surrounded by a custom heat shield. The goal is to pull in cooler outside air while isolating the filter from hot engine bay temperatures. Dyno testing showed gains of 19 hp and 22 lb-ft of torque with the K&N intake installed.

AEM Brute Force Intake

Another leader in the cold air intake market is AEM. Their 21-8182C air intake system utilizes an oval-shaped dry filter inside a rotomolded polyethylene airbox. This smooths airflow right into the engine, while giving the Malibu an awesome turbocharged sound. Independent testing revelead this CAI is good for 14 extra horsepower and 15 lb-ft more twist compared to stock. Plus, AEM intakes come with a lifetime warranty for peace of mind.

Spec-D Tuning Intake Kit

If you’re looking for an inexpensive way to free up some power, check out this universal cold air kit from Spec-D Tuning. It uses a cone-style oiled cotton filter housed in a custom heat shield and aluminum piping. The smooth tubing reduces turbulence on the way to the throttle body. Owners report gains of 7-10 hp, better throttle response, and an aggressive intake roar. At less than $100, it’s hard to beat the value this offers.

Injen Short Ram Intake

Injen is known for making intake systems that look as good as they perform. Their short ram setup for the Malibu ditches the heat shield in favor of polished aluminum piping and a cool blue filter element right in the engine bay. While performance filters, this system optimizes airflow and picks up every bit of turbo spool and blow-off sound. Plus, it just looks sick when you pop the hood!

No matter which one you choose, upgrading to a performance cold air intake is a great way to enhance your Malibu’s acceleration, responsiveness, and auditory excitement. Just be sure to get a CARB-approved system to avoid check engine lights or failed smog tests. With an intake upgrade, you’ll enjoy the increased power and turbo noises as you cruise the streets in style.

How an Air Intake Improves Throttle Response

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When you stomp on the accelerator, you want your engine to react immediately. That split second delay between pressing the gas and feeling the surge of torque is known as throttle response. Modifying the air intake system is one of the simplest ways to optimize throttle response in your 2024 Chevy Malibu.

Here’s a look at how upgrading to a cold air intake enhances throttle response:

Less Restrictive Airflow

The factory airbox and intake tubing are designed for quiet operation and fuel efficiency. Lots of twists, bends, and sound baffling materials make it harder for air to flow. An aftermarket cold air intake uses straight, mandrel-bent aluminum piping to smooth the path from filter to throttle body. This reduction in restrictions allows the engine to ingest air faster when the throttle plate opens.

Higher Airflow Volume

Performance air filters found in cold air intakes have more surface area and filtration capacity compared to the stock paper elements. More airflow volume traveling into the engine equals a faster response when you mash the gas pedal.

Cooler Inlet Air Temps

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Drawing in air from outside the engine bay, instead of hot air surrounding the motor, allows your Malibu’s turbocharger to produce boost more rapidly. The denser, cooler charge air gets pushed into the cylinders quicker for immediate power delivery.

Decreased Intake Vacuum

The factory airbox can create excessive vacuum pressure during operation. This results in turbo lag before torque builds. An optimized cold air intake system draws in air with less vacuum restriction for lightning-quick throttle response.

Freed Up Horsepower

The efficiency improvements of a cold air intake liberation additional horsepower throughout the RPM band. When the throttle plate opens, this extra power is readily available to be transferred to the tires.

Upgrading to an aftermarket performance air intake is one of the easiest ways to enjoy better throttle response in your Malibu. Whether commuting in traffic or jumping on the highway, you’ll notice crisper acceleration and turbo spool when you put your foot down.

Choosing the Right Air Filter for Your Driving Style

One of the keys to maximizing performance gains from a cold air intake on your 2024 Chevy Malibu is selecting the right air filter. The type of media, shape, and size of air filter you choose should match your particular driving style and needs.

Cotton Gauze Filters

Cotton gauze air filters, like those from K&N, work great for all-around driving. The layered cotton material flows high volumes of air, is cleanable and reusable, and provides excellent filtration. This is a great choice if you do a mix of city commuting and highway driving.

Oiled Foam Filters

Oiled foam filters from companies like Spectre and Green offer high airflow for the dollar. The lightweight foam is soaked in oil to catch fine particles. Ideal for budget builds, but not reusable or as durable as cotton filters.

Pleated Paper Filters

Pleated paper air filters use multiple layers of cotton-gauze shaped into pleats to increase surface area. Great for daily drivers who want added capacity and airflow over stock air filters. Not reusable but still affordable.

Conical vs Cylindrical Shape

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Conical air filters are cone or triangular shaped. They offer lots of surface area but can obstruct airflow at higher RPMs. Cylindrical filters maintain consistent airflow as revs climb. Choose based on your driving habits.

Bigger is Better

In general, opting for the largest filter size your engine bay can fit will provide the best gains. More surface area, less restriction. Just be sure to match the filter to the intake piping diameter.

Think about how you truly drive your Malibu before selecting an air filter. Optimize for your needs with cotton, foam, shape, and size rather than going with what came in the kit. Your engine will thank you!

Getting More Horsepower from Your Malibu’s Engine

The 2024 Chevy Malibu comes equipped with a peppy 2.0-liter turbocharged engine putting out 250 horsepower. But like any gearhead, you’re probably looking for ways to give your ride even more muscle. Installing a cold air intake is one of the easiest bolt-on mods to add noticeable horsepower gains to your Malibu.

What is Horsepower?

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Horsepower is a measurement of an engine’s power output. More horsepower equals more acceleration. The easiest way to think about it is horsepower gets your Malibu moving faster. Specifically, 1 hp equals the power needed to lift 550 pounds 1 foot in 1 second.

How Does a Cold Air Intake Add HP?

Swapping the factory airbox for a free-flowing cold air intake reduces air restriction into the turbo engine. This allows more air molecules to enter the cylinders during each intake stroke. More air + more fuel = bigger combustion events = higher horsepower output.

Testing for Real Gains

The dyno is the best way to accurately measure horsepower changes from bolt-on parts like a cold air intake. Various manufactures have seen 10-20 hp increases at the wheels after installing a CAI on the Malibu 2.0L turbo.

Feeling the Extra Power

You’ll really notice these horsepower improvements when accelerating onto the highway or passing on a two-lane road. Even just tooling around town, the added power makes the Malibu feel much more responsive.

Supporting Mods Add Up

Adding a cold air intake is just one part of an overall tuning process. Combining a CAI with a cat-back exhaust, ECU tune, downpipe, etc. allows you to maximize the potential horsepower output of your Malibu’s engine.

Unlocking extra horses from your engine is addicting. A cold air intake is the gateway mod to enjoying increased acceleration in your 2024 Chevy Malibu.

Improving Fuel Efficiency with an Air Intake

Most drivers upgrade their intake system expecting big horsepower gains. But a quality cold air intake can also improve fuel mileage in your 2024 Chevy Malibu. Here’s a look at how a CAI helps enhance MPG:

Colder Inlet Air Temps

Drawing in cooler external air, instead of hot engine bay air, increases air density for optimal fuel burn. The ECU can pull timing since the air/fuel mixture is less susceptible to detonation. This also reduces fuel enrichment.

Smoother Airflow

Restrictive bends and poor inlet geometry in the stock airbox causes turbulence. Smoothing the path into the engine reduces airflow resistance, putting less load on the motor so it doesn’t have to work as hard.

Increased Volumetric Efficiency

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More air flowing into each cylinder per intake stroke means better cylinder filling for complete combustion. This improves volumetric efficiency for better fuel mileage.

Calibrating the ECU

To take full advantage of intake upgrades, getting an ECU tune optimized for the increased airflow is key. This allows the engine computer to maximize MPG given the modifications.

Less Restriction at High RPMs

Stock airboxes often obstruct airflow at higher RPMs, forcing the engine to consume more fuel to make power. A free-flowing CAI maintains efficient airflow as engine speed climbs.

A cold air intake optimizes intake air characteristics for the most efficient burn. When combined with proper ECU tuning, drivers commonly report 1-3 MPG fuel economy improvements with an upgraded intake system.

Easy DIY Installation of a Malibu Air Intake

Looking to enhance your 2024 Chevy Malibu’s performance? One of the easiest and most effective mods you can make is installing a new cold air intake. A cold air intake allows your Malibu to breathe in cooler, denser air compared to the hot engine air it gets from the factory airbox. This denser air helps boost horsepower and torque for improved acceleration. A cold air intake also gives your Malibu a nice aggressive sound under hard acceleration.

Installing an aftermarket cold air intake on your 2024 Malibu is a relatively easy DIY job you can tackle in your garage in under an hour. Here’s a look at some of the top intake options along with steps for installation.

K&N Cold Air Intake

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The most popular cold air intake for the new 2024 Malibu is from K&N. K&N is known for its iconic red filters and is one of the biggest names in the cold air intake market. The K&N 77-3082TS air intake kit for the Malibu includes a large high-flow conical air filter, durable aluminum tubing, and all necessary hardware for installation. It’s engineered to pull in cooler outside air from behind the headlight for maximum power gains.

Installing this K&N intake takes minimal mechanical ability. Just pop the hood and locate the factory airbox. Unclip the airbox lid and remove the factory air filter. Detach the air ducts leading into the airbox. Install the new red K&N filter onto the intake tube using the provided hose clamps. Then attach the new intake tubing using the factory airbox mounting points. You’ll notice a sizeable exposed filter that pulls in air from the front rather than hot engine bay air. The final step is plugging in the provided temperature sensor so your engine computer can monitor incoming air temp.

With an easy bolt-on install taking less than 30 minutes, this K&N intake nets you an average 12-15hp gain on a naturally aspirated 2.0L Malibu. And you’ll really hear the turbo spool up on Malibu RS models. The K&N intake runs around $300-$350 but dramatically livens up your Malibu’s performance.

AEM Brute Force Intake

Another leader in the cold air intake market is AEM. Their Brute Force intake for the Malibu features a rugged synthetic air filter along with polished aluminum intake piping for smooth airflow. The filter is contained in a heat-shielding composite housing that isolates it from hot engine air, allowing for a denser cool air charge.

Installation follows similar steps to the K&N intake. Unclip and remove the factory airbox lid and air filter. Then loosen the clamp securing the air duct to the OEM airbox. Detach the duct and remove the airbox. Install the new AEM air filter into the provided housing and secure it to the vehicle frame. Connect the intake piping to the factory air duct using the provided couplers and clamps. Like the K&N, this AEM intake also draws in cool outside air from behind the headlight for optimum performance.

The AEM Brute Force Air Intake can also be installed in well under an hour with basic hand tools. It nets similar gains to the K&N, providing an average of 12-15 additional horsepower. The AEM intake costs a little more than the K&N at around $375 but is another great option for enhanced acceleration in your new Malibu.

Injen Cold Air Intake

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The Injen intake is a third popular choice for the Malibu. This system includes a hydro-shielded air filter encased in a molded housing that shields it from engine heat. The intake tubing is made from wrinkle-red silicone for durability. As with other intakes, it draws outside air from the front rather than hot engine bay air.

For installation, start by unclipping the factory airbox lid and removing the air filter and airbox. Install the new Injen filter into the provided housing, securing it with the supplied hardware. Then attach the intake tube to the factory air duct using the included silicone couplers. Like other intakes, this is designed as a simple bolt-on application taking less than an hour.

The Injen intake comes in around the same $300-$350 range as the K&N unit. You can expect a nice boost of 12-15 horsepower along with enhanced throttle response and turbo spool up. It’s another great option for a quick DIY cold air intake upgrade on your new Malibu.

Choosing the Best Intake for Your Malibu

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When selecting a cold air intake for your 2024 Chevy Malibu, go with a proven brand name like K&N, AEM or Injen. While you can find cheaper no-name intakes online, these major manufacturers have extensive R&D behind their intake designs. This ensures you get the full performance benefits from a cold air intake system.

Consider factors like filter type, housing design, and ease of installation. The most important thing is that the intake isolates the filter from hot engine bay air. intakes like the K&N, AEM, and Injen all draw in fresh outside air from behind the headlight for optimal cooling. The installation process is straightforward for all these major brands, making it a great weekend DIY garage project.

A cold air intake is one of the simplest ways to unleash some extra horsepower and torque from the new turbocharged 2.0L engine in the 2024 Malibu. Models like the Malibu RS will really come alive with an aggressive cold air intake installed. And you’ll love hearing the turbo spool up when you slam the accelerator. The K&N, AEM and Injen intakes profiled here are all great options that will give your Malibu a nice boost for less than $400.

Maintaining Your Malibu’s Air Intake System

Installing an aftermarket cold air intake is one of the best ways to enhance performance on the new 2024 Chevy Malibu. Brands like K&N, AEM, and Injen make bolt-on intakes that boost horsepower while giving your Malibu an aggressive intake growl. But it’s important to properly maintain your Malibu’s air intake system post-install. With the right maintenance, your cold air intake will provide years of boosted acceleration.

Here are key tips for keeping your Malibu’s air intake in top shape:

Check Intake Connections

Over time, the clamps and silicone couplings connecting your aftermarket intake piping can loosen. This allows unmetered air into the system, potentially causing a check engine light. Every few months, inspect all the connections in your Malibu’s intake tract. Make sure the silicone couplers are tight and not cracked. Snug up any loose clamps to prevent air leaks.

Clean the Air Filter

The large conical or rectangular air filter in your cold air intake will get dirty over time. Many aftermarket intakes use cotton gauze filters that need cleaning every 15,000-20,000 miles. K&N air filters are washable and reusable. Check the filter manufacturer’s instructions to determine the recommended cleaning interval for your specific intake.

Use the provided cleaning spray and gently wipe down the filter to remove built-up dirt. Avoid applying too much pressure. Let the filter fully air dry before reinstalling. An excessively dirty air filter can collapse under heavy airflow, reducing engine power.

Change the Air Filter

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For intakes with standard paper air filters, you’ll need to change the filter periodically. This is typically needed every 30,000 to 50,000 miles depending on driving conditions. AEM’s lifetime air filters are one exception that never needs replacement. Just gently clean the AEM filter when it gets dirty. For other intake brands, swap in a new OEM air filter based on the recommended interval to maintain peak intake flow.

Check the Mass Air Flow Sensor

Many cold air intakes incorporate the factory mass airflow sensor or MAF. This measures the intake volume so your ECU can optimize fueling. Over time, MAF sensors can get covered in dirt and debris which impairs their readings. Use electronics cleaner or MAF cleaner spray to gently wipe down the sensor if it looks dirty. Avoid bending or touching the sensor element itself.

Replace Intake Seals

Your Malibu’s air intake system relies on rubber gaskets and O-rings to seal connections. These seals dry out and crack over time. Check intake components like the MAF housing, throttle body coupler, and intake tube joints. Replace any cracked or damaged seals to prevent air leaks.

Inspect the Intake Tubing

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The intake tubes that route filtered air into your Malibu’s intake manifold can suffer damage. Inspect the full length of the tubes for cracks or holes where unmetered air could enter. Also check for loose fasteners or broken mounting brackets. Damaged intake tubes should be replaced to maintain proper air delivery.

Check for Engine Codes

A deteriorating component in your Malibu’s air intake will often trigger a check engine light. Use an OBD2 scanner to pull any intake-related trouble codes. A faulty MAF sensor, vacuum leak, or intake gasket issue can set codes like P0101, P0171, or P0174. Address the underlying problem right away to restore proper engine operation.

Keep Your Malibu’s Intake in Peak Condition

A cold air intake is a great way to enhance horsepower and acceleration on the new 2024 Malibu. Brands like K&N, Injen, and AEM all offer quality intake kits that are easy to install oneself. But it’s important to stay on top of maintenance to ensure your Malibu’s intake keeps delivering peak performance.

Regularly inspect your intake piping for leaks while cleaning the reusable air filter. Swap in a new filter based on the manufacturer’s recommendation. Also watch for check engine lights indicating intake issues. With proper care and maintenance, your aftermarket air intake will provide years of boosted power in your Malibu.

Best Places to Buy Quality Malibu Air Intakes Online

Installing an aftermarket cold air intake is one of the best DIY upgrades you can make to your 2024 Chevy Malibu. A cold air intake gives you increased horsepower and torque for quicker acceleration. It also provides aggressive induction noise when you step on the gas. But where are the best places online to buy a top-quality air intake for your new Malibu?

K&N Website

One of the top manufacturers of performance air intakes is K&N. When you buy directly from the K&N website, you know you’re getting an intake engineered specifically for your Malibu. K&N intakes include a washable cotton gauze filter, aluminum intake tubing, and all necessary mounting hardware.

The K&N site makes it easy to lookup intake kits by year, make, and model. For the 2024 Malibu, they offer part number 77-3082TS. You can choose free shipping or expedited delivery. K&N also provides excellent customer service and support in case you have any questions on fitment or installation.

AEM Direct

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Like K&N, AEM is one of the major cold air intake brands. Their Direct website allows you to buy AEM intakes direct from the manufacturer. Simply enter your 2024 Malibu’s info to see available intake kits. AEM intakes feature a synthetic filter that never needs replacement, polished aluminum piping, and a heat-shielding composite housing.

Buying from AEM Direct, you know you’re getting an intake engineered and tested specifically for the Malibu. AEM also offers free shipping on orders over $100 along with a satisfaction guarantee. Their site makes it easy to purchase a quality intake kit for your Chevy.


In addition to the manufacturer websites, aftermarket retailers like AutoAnything are a great place to buy air intakes online. They carry all the major brands like K&N, AEM, Injen, and more. You can select a specific intake kit using the vehicle year/make/model tool.

AutoAnything offers free shipping, discounted pricing, and a wide selection of intake options. Their site also has customer product reviews, comparison tools, and installation videos. Purchasing from a specialty retailer gives you plenty of brand selection for your Malibu.


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Another large online retailer of aftermarket parts is CARiD. Like AutoAnything, they feature air intakes from all the top manufacturers. Use their vehicle selector to find specific intake kits for the 2024 Chevy Malibu, then read customer reviews to help choose the best one.

In addition to low prices and free shipping, CARiD offers live customer service to help with product selection and fitment questions. Their site makes it really easy to dial in the perfect cold air intake to boost your Malibu’s performance.

Do Your Research to Find the Best Intake

The K&N, AEM, Injen and other brand websites make it easy to find a direct-fit air intake for your 2024 Malibu. Purchasing from the manufacturer, you know you’re getting a quality part engineered for your exact vehicle. Larger retailers provide more brand selection along with customer reviews that help you choose.

Make sure to verify any cold air intake you install is specifically designed for the 2024 Malibu’s 2.0L turbo engine. Carefully follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installation and maintenance. With a high-flowing cold air intake kit from a reputable brand, you can unlock more horsepower and torque for improved acceleration in your new Chevy.

Reviews of the Best 2024 Chevy Malibu Air Intakes

A cold air intake is one of the best bang-for-your buck upgrades you can make to a 2024 Chevy Malibu. Cooler denser air equals more horsepower and torque. Aftermarket intakes also give your Malibu a throatier growl. But which ones are the best for your new Chevy? Here are reviews of top air intakes for the 2024 Malibu.

K&N 77-3082TS Intake

The K&N 77-3082TS is one of the most popular intake choices for Malibu owners. This kit includes K&N’s signature red conical air filter, wrinkle-finish aluminum intake tubing, and all hardware needed for installation. The filter housing isolating it from hot engine bay air. This allows the filter to draw in cooler outside air for better performance.

K&N intakes are known for adding 12-15hp on average. Users report excellent throttle response and acceleration from the 77-3082TS model. It really wakes up the Malibu’s 2.0L turbo engine. We noticed quicker spool up and a nice aggressive intake growl. The K&N filter is also washable and reusable for maintenance-free operation.

AEM 21-8127DC Intake

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Another leading cold air intake brand is AEM. Their 21-8127DC intake is specifically designed for the Malibu’s 2.0L turbo engine. It uses a synthetic filter that never needs replacement housed in a heat-shielded box. The intake piping is polished aluminum for smooth airflow.

This AEM intake installs just as easily as the K&N with all direct factory fitments. It provides similar horsepower and acceleration improvements thanks to the cold air isolated box. The AEM filter is maintenance-free and gives the Malibu an excellent induction sound. Overall one of the best plug-and-play intakes out there.

Injen SP2101P Intake

Injen is another respected name in cold air intakes. Their SP2101P kit for the Malibu features a hydro-shielded air filter and wrinkle-red silicone intake tubes. The heat-reflecting housing ensures filtered air stays cool for max density and power.

Just like other brands, Injen designed this intake as an easy bolt-on replacement for the factory airbox. Users compliment the quality components and report meaningful acceleration gains. It really enhances the engine’s turbo response. The Injen intake also gives your Malibu an aggressive growl that turns heads.

Our Top Intake Picks for the Malibu

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K&N, AEM, and Injen make the best cold air intakes currently available for the 2024 Chevy Malibu. All three feature isolated air boxes that pull in cooler outside air compared to the stock airbox. This denser air equals better throttle response, quicker turbo spool up, and 12-15hp gains.

For under $400, you can really wake up your Malibu’s performance with one of these intakes. We recommend buying directly from the manufacturer if possible to ensure the correct vehicle-specific kit. With a quality cold air intake installed, your Malibu will have livelier acceleration and an aggressive intake note.