The other subject, an Opel Vectra, can be referenced here by scrolling to "Vectra C (2002–2009)." Both cars were among those sharing the General Motors Epsilon platform. As it happened, their styling is almost identical, unlike some other contemporaneous platform-mates such as the Saab 9-3, Pontiac G6, and Fiat Croma.
I rented a Malibu about ten years ago in Las Vegas and was surprised by its peppy performance. On the other hand, I was not impressed by its styling. Let's take a look at those Malibus and Vectras.