2014 Chevy Impala0
2014 Chevrolet Impala – Frumpy to Fabulous
Over the last few years, or shall we say the last decade or two, the Chevrolet Impala had lost its flair. There it stood, silently at the back of the full-size sedan crowd and while offering reliability and simplicity, it was missing that “It” factor that buyers long for.
Long gone are the days when “getting the job done” was a strong selling point. Today shoppers have even higher demands, gravitating towards the prettiest most fashionable set of wheels loaded with the latest in tech features. These are two categories that the Impala consistently fell short on year after year. It offered everything you needed but nothing that you wanted. In fact, roughly 70 percent of all Impala sales have been fleet vehicles, leaving the remaining 30 percent to retail customers. Clearly it hasn’t been on top, average at best when compared to its competition.
This year brings welcome change. The all-new and much improved Chevrolet Impala has the “It” factor that will certainly please many of today’s consumers. Or at least we think it does. It has bold assertive looks that exudes confidence and makes a statement rather than fading away into its surroundings.
Its new interior, inspired by the classic Chevrolet dual cockpit, surrounds passengers with rich surfaces and materials that flow together seamlessly. The center stack remains uncomplicated and its intuitive technology is easy to navigate through. Owners will also have plenty to talk about in terms of legroom and overall passenger space. Its long list of tech goodies includes an 8-inch color touch screen with fully customizable icons and features, Chevrolet’s improved MyLink system, Bluetooth wireless technology, navigation and a hidden USB port.
When compared to the outgoing model, handling is better balanced and more buttoned down- we give it two thumbs up. Offering one of the most powerful engines in its segment, a 305 HP 3.6L V6, the Impala makes merging into busy freeway traffic seam effortless. Fuel economy is estimated at 19city/29highway- respectable for an engine of this caliber and car of this size. Our tests returned roughly the same, averaging between 18 and 19mpg. Chevy’s new ECOTEC 2.5L engine offers a small increase in fuel economy but it goes without saying that it’s not as spry as the V6. A mild Hybrid is also optional (late availability) which will offer even greater fuel savings.
With a choice of three trim levels and a price tag starting at just $26,725 there’s little room for complaint. Given its new design and additional features the Impala is sure to give its closest competitors, the Hyundai Azera, Toyota Avalon and all-new Kia Cadenza, a good run for their money. It’s sure to please and appears destined to reclaim its glory as top choice among the full size segment.
Dashing good looks; spacious & comfortable interior; agile & composed ride; long list of desirable features
Indecisive transmission on windy roads; uninspiring 4-cylinder engine doesn’t offer much of a boost in fuel economy
edited by: Christine Butt