This week we’re looking at the 2007 Chevrolet Impala SS Sedan which is the top of the lineup for Impala. And you know when you slide into the saddle, put the pedal to the metal you sense immediately these ponies want to run. Ever ridden a horse that sweats just standing there? That’s the feeling you get in this SS. It brings back memories of the muscle cars of yesteryear, and I’m sure that’s precisely what GM wants you to feel.
Dodge Charger and the New Mustang and of course the return of the Camaro all point to the perceived interest by the consumer for these kinds of cars. And the buzz in the air of auto enthusiasts says they are exactly right about that. When people talk about the driving experience of such performance cars there is excitement in their voice. I believe that is because we’ve had a streak of boring vehicles over the past couple of decades. Ho Hum just doesn’t get it and at the end of the day we really want some excitement in our driving needs. After all we spend a lot of time in our autos commuting, week ending, vacationing and just out for the proverbial Sunday drive. So they should be fun and interesting cars.
Parts – US/Canadian 90%
Assembly – Oshawa, Ontario, Canada.
Class: – Large
Cars: – Avalanche, Aveo, Aveo 5, Cobalt, Colorado, Corvette, Equinox, Express, Express Cargo Van, HHR, Impala, Malibu, Malibu Max, Monte Carlo, Silverado 15,25 & 3500, Silverado Classic, Silverado Hybrid, SSR, Suburban, Tahoe, Trail Blazer & Uplander.
The first thing you notice when accelerating is that you feel the steering wheel tug at your hands. Front wheel drive does that and I have to admit I prefer rear wheel drive with such a responsive 303 horsepower V8 (the first since 1996). The ride is smooth and solid and a nice feel. There are rumors GM is considering a rear wheel drive in this cars future.
The other noticeable difference from the muscle cars of old and this is that even with all the power and performance you get decent fuel economy if you avoid jack rabbit starts.
The company touts this SS small block V8 as the fastest Impala SS in its history since unveiling in 1958.
Fit and Finish:
Boy, these guys must stay up nights figuring how much their cars should cost. Computers make life boring in a lot of ways and take all the fun out of cost accounting. I have to say that pricing is truly a function of cost to put these things together. Then they add a badge to push the price up for no other reason than it is in demand. There you go, ‘supply and demand’ supply side economics at work. It is that simple. Or is it?
Conveniences and comfort:
Child safety stuff on a muscle car sounds like a contradiction, but even race drivers have kids. If you go GM be sure you consider OnStar and XM radio. Two great features. And the cost for ‘Turn by turn’ an OnStar add-on is a great way to get navigation help for much less money than other screen based systems and with OnStar you talk to a real person. Novel idea don’t you think?
If a muscle car isn’t necessarily your thing I suggest you look closely at the new Saturn Aura. I will be reporting on it in the next few weeks, but I drove it for a couple of days last week and also at a roll out in San Diego months ago. The Aura is a sleeper – and sure to gain favor with lots of folks especially with the enticing come out pricing.
Chevrolet Impala $21-28,000, Saturn Aura $20-24,000, Hyundai Sonata $17-23,000, Buick LaCrosse $22-27,000, Pontiac Grand Prix $22-29,000, Toyota Camry $18-28,000, Honda Accord $19-30,000, Mitsubishi Galant $19-27,000, Mazda 6 $19-27,000, Mercury Montego $24-29,000, Ford Five Hundred $23-28,000, Chrysler 300 $24-40,000, Dodge Charger $21-36,000, Subaru Legacy $20-34,000, Volkswagen Passat $23-32,000, Nissan Altima $18-28,000.
Improved fuel economy in a performance car, silky smooth ride to boot.
Curious 4-speed trans… I expected 5 or 6 speed.
Standard Equipment: 5.3 liter 303 hp V8 engine, 4-speed automatic transmission, performance suspension, stainless steel exhaust, OnStar 1 year safe and sound (turn-by-turn can be added), 4-wheel ABS disc brake system, traction control, tire pressure monitor, dual front air bags, head curtain side air bags front and rear, auto headlights, power windows and locks, rear child seat latch system with rear child door locks, lock out protection, 18” aluminum wheels, performance tires, power mirrors, fog lights and SS rear spoiler, tilt steering wheel with cruise and audio controls, lighted visor mirrors, 8-way driver power seat, remote vehicle start, dual zone air conditioning, stereo with CD/MP3 player, XM satellite radio (3 mos included) and rear flip and fold flat seat.
$3.30/ Gal avg. Apr. 16 ‘07
for more information.
18 City and 27 Highway MPG
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