Chevrolet has redesigned the full-size Impala sedan for 2014 _ marking the 10th
generation of a nameplate that General Motors introduced for 1958.
This generation has lots of improvements both in looks and technology. It's no vanilla fleet vehicle _ it is attractive and well-appointed, inside and out, with plenty of space for five adults and lots of cargo _ 105 cubic feet of cabin space and 18.8 cubic feet of trunk.
Trim levels include the base LS, midlevel LT, and the LTZ, with a choice of three wheel sizes and three engines, and all have six-speed automatic transmissions.
The base engine is a new 195-horsepower, 2.5-liter Ecotec four-cylinder; optional is a 305-horsepower, 3.6-liter V-6. A 182-horsepower Ecotec 2.4-liter engine with GM's eAssist, also offered in the new Malibu, will be available by the end of the year, and will have the best fuel economy _ up to 35 mpg on the highway.
I tested a beautiful 2LTZ with the V-6 engine and silver-painted split-spoke 19-inch aluminum wheels with a distinctive machined face. The exterior was dressed up with strategically placed chrome accents and badging, just enough to be elegant. Chrome accented the trunk lip, the body-color door handles, the upper mirror housing and body side molding along the lower front door to the middle of the rear door.
Windows and the lower front air vent were outlined in chrome, the "grinning" grille was chrome with a chrome Chevy bowtie, the Impala badge on the rearmost side pillars were chrome, and the exhaust openings were chrome-trimmed.
Also included on the test vehicle was a power sunroof with a second-row skylight, which opens up the interior feel. The interior feels even roomier, thanks to rear doors that bow slightly outward to increase shoulder room. Legroom has actually been increased a total of 5.7 inches _ now 45.8 inches in the front and 39.8 inches in the rear.
The outboard rear seats were comfortable enough for a road trip, but even the middle seat had enough space for an average-size adult, or a sturdy child safety seat. There was some toe room carved out under the center front console, probably helpful for a child in a safety seat.
Rear passengers had a few amenities, including adjustable AC/heat vents, a small cubby and a 120-volt power outlet on the back of the center console (part of a premium audio package), dual reading lights, small seatback pockets, two cupholders on the pulled-down center armrest, and small bottle pockets on the doors.
Visibility in the rear was fair, with the slope of the side window extending to behind the passengers' heads.
The front carved bucket seats were heated and cooled, part of an optional package, and had enough adjustments to fit any driver comfortably. The passenger seat also reclined. The package included memory settings for the driver's seat, outside mirrors and heated tilt/telescopic steering column; heated outside mirrors with ground illumination and jewel-like turn signal indicators; auto-dimming driver's side mirror and inside rearview mirror; a universal garage/gate remote; and premium carpeted floor and trunk mats.
The driver and front passenger had lots of options for storage, with larger bottle/map pockets on the doors, a rubber-lined cubby with a removable tray under the armrest, a covered cubby with a 12-volt outlet under the dash, and a
Most Popular Stories
- NSA Defends Global Cellphone Tracking Legality
- Top Websites for U.S. Hispanics
- Networks Vie for U.S. Hispanic TV Viewers
- Ad Counts Rise in 2013 for Hispanic Magazines
- Apple Wants Samsung to Pay $22M for Patent Dispute Legal Bills
- Starbucks Gets Grinchy; No Gingerbread Lattes for Tampa Customers
- Jobs Report Brings Cheer As Unemployment Drops to Five-year Low
- Apple Paid Its Lawyers More Than $60MM to Defeat Samsung in Court
- Economic Bright Spots Not a Sure Boost for President Obama
- US Consumer Borrowing Rose $18.2B in Oct.