Chevrolet will be refreshing its car lineup for the 2019 model year, with Malibu, Cruze, and Spark models receiving new styling and a handful of upgrades.
For the first time ever, the Malibu gets the sporty RS trim, which adds a rear spoiler, 18-inch machined wheels, exhaust system with dual outlets, and blacked-out exterior bits such as a black sport grille and bowtie emblems, while the interior features black cloth seats, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob.
All 2019 Malibu sedans receive a slight refresh consisting of a redesigned front end with new bumper, grille and headlights, as well as a new rear end design with upgraded taillights. The 2019 Malibu is offered in L, LS, RS, LT, Hybrid and Premier trims, all of which feature a newly integrated 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system.
For L, LS, and LT trims, a newly developed continuously variable transmission (CVT) replaces the 6-speed automatic found in previous models. Other changes to the 2019 Malibu include a standard rearview camera, available LED taillights, and heated rear outboard seats for the top-of-the-line Malibu Premier trim.
A handful of updates are made to the 2019 Chevrolet Cruze, which is available in either sedan or hatchback body styles. The new Cruze benefits from updated front end styling and a standard 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system, as well as expanded availability for remote start and automatic climate control – which are now both standard features on LT and Premier trims.
Unfortunately, some bad news is served alongside the upgrades to the 2019 Cruze – Chevrolet has confirmed that going forward, the compact vehicle will no longer be offered with a manual transmission, because according to the automaker, a measly 2% of Cruze buyers opted to row their own gears.
Though this news is disappointing, it serves as proof that if the general public isn’t buying a given configuration, it provides very little incentive for the automaker to keep offering it.
Other changes to Chevy’s lineup are rounded out with a refresh of the affordable and adorable 2019 Chevrolet Spark. The 2019 Spark gets revised wheel designs, three new exterior paint colors, as well as options for a forward automatic emergency braking system and LED daytime running lights with projector beam headlights.
As crossovers continue to be all the rage in today’s automotive market, midsize sedans and other more traditional vehicles have been taking a hit; evidenced by recent reports indicating Chevrolet will be phasing out it’s Sonic subcompact vehicle, as well as the Impala sedan, which are noticeably absent from Chevrolet’s release regarding these updates to its car lineup.
Though it seems all but confirmed Chevrolet is consolidating its car lineup, the manufacturer provides each of the remaining models with subtle upgrades in order to gain some new potential customers.
Did you find this article helpful? If so, please share it using the “Join the Conversation” buttons below, and thank you for visiting Daily News Autos.