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|03-17-2009, 09:37 PM||#1 (permalink)|
1st Year of the 5th Generation
History of the Chevrolet Impala 1958-2011
CHEVROLET IMPALA and IMPALA SS
History of the Impala - Introduction
In a country that worships its automobiles, being the favorite brand is a high honor. Since it was first introduced in 1958, Impala has become more than just a car... its unique combination of style, performance and value made it an off-the-charts favorite for millions of Americans. In fact, with sales in excess of 12 million from 1958 to 2002, more American households chose Impala as their car than any other full-size car in the history of the automobile. The Chevrolet Impala is often credited with starting the muscle car era. Born as Chevrolet's top of the line model, the Impala quickly became the symbol for performance in the early sixties and introduced Chevrolet's signature "SS" brand of performance. The Impala SS was available only from 1961-1969 and from 1995-1996. Although smaller, lighter automobiles would later eclipse it, the Impala still remains the performance car of choice for those that like big cars.
For many, just hearing the name Impala brings an emotional response. Whatever comes to mind probably depends on your perspective. For some, Impala meant vacations in the family station wagon, or sun-drenched rides in the back seat of a big convertible. To others, it meant the venerable Impala SS Coupes of the ‘60s, packing big-block V8s and "four on the floor." But for most owners, Impala was a roomy, four-door sedan that provided them with "something extra" compared with the competition
Ed Cole, Chevrolet’s chief engineer in the late ‘50s, said it best when he defined Impala as a "prestige car within the reach of the average American citizen." In essence, the Impala was built on a simple formula — provide a good-looking car with more performance, amenities and value than you might expect, all at a Chevrolet price, and the rest will follow.
The formula worked like magic and helped turn Impala into an American icon. Impala became the best-selling Chevrolet car in its first full year as a model line. The very next year, it became the best-selling car in America... a position it held for more than a decade. In 1965, Impala set an all-time industry annual sales record of more than 1 million units. Thus, this magic formula (one which Chevrolet had championed for decades) was perfected in the Impala.
History of the Impala - The 1950's
The public introduction of the Chevrolet Impala took place in 1956 when the one-of-a-kind Impala show car debuted at the General Motors Motorama. The sporty four-passenger coupe had a strong Corvette flavor and was referred to as the “Corvette Impala” in some of the motoring press. The Impala was originally conceived as a Bel Air executive coupe. The year was 1958. At Chevrolet and throughout the auto industry, change was in the air. GM's legendary styling chief Harley Earl had left an indelible mark on Chevrolet (Corvettes, tail fins and lots of chrome were but a few of his myriad contributions). At retirement, he left understudy Bill Mitchell in the driver's seat as vice president of the GM styling staff.
Meanwhile, the auto industry was booming. Americans were hitting the road in droves. According to government statistics, the number of passenger car miles traveled on America's roads grew 62 percent from 1950 to 1960. And since gasoline was cheap, consumer demand for power exceeded the need for efficiency. Buyers were clamoring for as much room, performance, amenities and quality as they could get for their hard-earned dollars. Chevy filled that need with the Impala.
The Original Impala
In 1958, Chevrolet introduced its new full-size passenger cars, redesigned from the ground up with a new frame and sheet metal. A new uplevel, sporty trim package was created for Bel Air coupes and convertibles, along with a new name - Impala. The Impala began as the top option level on Chevrolet's Bel Air line. Chevrolet's 1958 lineup featured one-year-only styling that sported "curves where before there were lines." The Impala option added special trim, deluxe interiors, and resulted in the steepest price in the Chevrolet lineup. Performance was important from the beginning as the first Impala could be optioned with up to a 348 V8 putting out 315 bhp. The public's positive response lead to Chevrolet making the Impala a separate option for the next year. Chevrolet produced 125,480 Bel Air Impala coupes and 55,989 convertibles in model-year 1958. Engine options were a 235-cubic-inch six-cylinder, a 283 V-8, or three new 348 V-8s; a 250hp Turbo-Thrust, a 280hp with 3-2bbl, or a 315hp Super Turbo-Thrust model with high-compression heads and solid lifters. Base price of a new Sport Coupe in 1958 ranged from $2,586 to $2,693; the convertibles ranged from $2,724 to $2,841. Weights were approximately 3,458-3,523 lbs. The Impala brand was born. To consumers, Impala offered an uplevel image that was still within an affordable price range. From the beginning, the Impala nameplate carried with it images of fun, youthfulness, spontaneity and pride.
The Impala became its own model in 1959 with both two and four-door versions. Chevy’s radically restyled 1959 passenger models were a big surprise, rendering the all-new 1958’s obsolete. The “stealthy” theme of the 1959 press kit only hinted at the wild changes in store. According to press materials of the day, mechanical advancements of improved brakes, new suspension and easier handling point to a luxury liner that is marked for top popularity. As with all 1959 Chevy's, the new Impalas were longer, lower, wider, and curvier. Chevy’s bold new face dropped the headlights seven inches from 1958 to the minimum height allowable. Interiors gained nearly five inches in width. They also had the wildest tailfins besides Cadillac. The rear end sported "bat wing" rear fenders, "cat's eye" taillamps, and a huge decklid. The drivetrain stayed the same, with some increases in horsepower and sales remained good. Of particular interest to enthusiasts were the availability of fuel injected 283 V8's, although these were rare. Starting prices were $2,592 for the I-6 sedan up to $2,967 for the convertible coupe. Weights were approximately 3,570-3,665 lbs. The theory worked, and Impala production reached 473,000 units in 1959 - Chevy's top-selling car nameplate. Impala became America's best seller just one year later.
History of the Impala - The 1960's
The Impala was toned down for 1960 and lost some of their distinct styling. Chevrolet changed almost every body panel on its 1960 cars except the roof. GM designers later admitted that they knew they’d gone too far, hence the more conservative approach for 1960. The “cat’s eye” taillamps were replaced by three round cone shaped taillamps per side and the gullwing fins were toned down. Prices ranged from $2,590-$2,954. Weights were approximately 3,575-3,635 lbs.
By 1961, tail fins were gone on Chevrolet models, chrome trim was subdued, and the outspoken designs of the '50s gave way to cleaner, crisper, faster-looking edges, and streamlined, rocket-like shapes. Bill Mitchell's styling vision was evident. The Impalas were finless for 1961 and the Impalas retained the three-lamp motif at the rear. 1961 would be the year that the first true muscle car was introduced, the Chevrolet Impala SS. A mid-year option on the 1961 Impala was the Super Sport which was available on all body styles. In subsequent years the SS is limited to only sport coupes and convertibles. The SS package in 1961 was truly a performance package. Nothing less than the high-performance 348 engines or the new 409 could be ordered. The 348 options were 305, 340 and 350 horsepower engines. It consisted of upgraded tires on station wagon wheels, springs, shocks and special sintered metallic brake linings. Power brakes and steering were also included. This would also be the year that Chevrolet introduced its 409 cubic inch V8, the engine that would launch the Big Three auto manufacturers into the horsepower race that would last well into the 1970s. The 409 was a bored and stroked version of the 348, rated at 360 hp on a single 4 barrel and was known as the Turbo-Fire 409. A true performance engine, the 409 came with an aluminum intake manifold, a Carter four-barrel carburetor, a solid lifter camshaft and an 11.25:1 compression ratio. A total of 142 cars got this engine in 1961. In the interior, the SS package consisted of a passenger’s-side grab bar with the Impala SS script, a 7000 rpm steering wheel mounted tachometer, a shifter plate for four-speed-manual equipped Impalas and a dash panel pad. The Impala SS could be identified by SS emblems on the rear fenders and trunk lid. Wheel covers were unique, featuring three-blade knock-off type spinners. The 409 was actually a response to Ford's new 390 cid engine, which was outperforming Chevy's on the dragstrip. Although it put out "only" 360 bhp compared to Ford's top 375 bhp, those extra 19 cid gave it respect on the street and immortalized in song ("She's really fine, my 409"). Chevrolet introduced the Super Sport (SS) option package, which was optional on the 348 and standard with the 409, which would define Chevrolet performance for many years to come. The Super Sport package, a bargain at just $53.80, consisted of special body and interior trim, power steering, power brakes with sintered metallic linings, full wheel covers with a three blade spinner, a passenger grab bar, a console for the floor shift, and a tachometer on the steering column. The 409 engine came only with the four-speed manual transmission and only one factory axle ratio. Lower axle ratios were available from the dealer and owners could see 1/4 mile times in the high 15s, which was pretty impressive in 1961. Prices ranged from $3,445-$3,605. Weights were approximately 3,445-3,600 lbs.
In 1962 the option of the Super Sport was available on only the two-door coupe and convertible. However, the SS models in 1962 could have any engine from the standard 235 ci six to the 409 big block V-8. (Impala SS engine options included the 235ci 135hp I-6, 283ci 170hp V-8, 327ci 250 V-8, 327ci 300 V-8, 409ci 380hp V-8 and the 409ci 409hp V-8.) Horsepower ratings on the 409 ci V-8’s were upped to 380 on the single four barrel and 409 on the 2 x 4 barrel. The heavy duty mechanical items of the 1961 Super Sport option (HD springs, shocks, brake linings, etc.) were deleted in 1962, though they were available optionally. Chevrolet increased production of the 409 and made it available in all full size Chevy's - Biscaynes, Bel Airs, and Impalas. The Impala Sport Coupe came with a ribbed rear roof line and a smaller back window to mimic the look of a cloth convertible top. The Impala's were a bit less aerodynamic this year, which made some racers turn to the lighter and slicker Bel Air coupe. The biggest change from 1961 was that the front bucket seats with a short console between became a part of the SS package in 1962. On the exterior, the most noticeable difference between the Super Sport Impala and the regular Impala was the use of aluminum body molding inserts; plain Impalas came with painted inserts. The rear fender SS emblems were redesigned. For 1962 the SS letters with red inlay were positioned over the circular Impala emblem. An Impala SS emblem was located on the right rear part of the trunk. The 409 was improved by adding new cylinder heads and a revised camshaft. With the standard 4 bbl carb, the 409 produced 380 bhp. But the real news was the improved top of the line 409 which added a pair of Carter AFB four barrel carbs and a lightweight valve train, and produced an astonishing 409 bhp, or a magical 1 bhp per cid. The 409 legend grew. Prices ranged from $2,961-$3,925. Weights were approximately 3,450-3,920 lbs.
1963 saw the Impala SS continue to increase in performance and popularity. With the elimination of the Bel Air coupe, buyers again switched back to Impala SS coupes and convertibles. (Impala SS engine options included the 230ci 140hp I-6, 283ci 195hp V-8, 327ci 250 V-8, 327ci 300 V-8, 409ci 4 bbl 340hp V-8, 409ci 4 bbl 400hp V-8, 409ci 2x4bbl 425hp V-8 and the 427ci 2x4bbl 430hp V-8.) The 409 was further improved for driveability and a detuned version with 340 bhp was made available with an optional Powerglide automatic transmission. For the serious enthusiasts, Chevrolet offered the 409 with solid lifters and a single four bbl carb good for 400 bhp and a solid lifter 409 with two four barrel carbs good for a whooping 425 bhp. As if that wasn't enough, Chevrolet introduced a new engine, the Z-11 in mid 1963. This was a 427 cid V8 loosely based on the existing 409 but featured a smaller bore and a longer stroke. It featured angled valves and was nicknamed the "porcupine head motor." Although it was officially rated at 430 bhp, it easily made close to 500 bhp and was an instant success at the drag strip. Unfortunately, it was only available to factory approved customers through Chevrolet's RPO (Regular Production Option). It was usually coupled with the optional factory fitted lightweight front end - aluminum panels and bumper. In addition, Chevrolet was preparing another 427 V8, the Daytona "Mystery Motor" to be used at the 1963 Daytona race. However, Chevrolet officially withdrew from racing competition, putting a stop to development of the "Mystery Motor" and after only 55 Z-11 Impalas were built. The 427 would not reappear for another three years, but it would be a direct descendent of the "Mystery Motor" that Chevrolet had killed in 1963. Prices ranged from $2,661-$3,170. Weights were approximately 3,265-3,870 lbs.
The Impala SS became its own series (separate model rather than an option package) for 1964 and continue to feature unique exterior trim and a lavish interior. A slight redesign distinguished the 1964 Impala, giving the car a more boxy, formal look. The Impala SS received different side moldings, which ran along the bodyside sculpturing. The usual red-filled SS letters on the rear fenders did not use the Impala emblem. The SS models got the aluminized taillight panel insert and additional SS identification on the right side of the trunk. The new wheel covers did not have the nonfunctional knock-off spinners. Available only as a convertible or Sport Coupe, the SS was offered with the same engines as 1963, including the top of the line 409, except the 427ci 2x4bbl 430hp V-8 was dropped. But the introduction of the Pontiac GTO would steal the Impala SS thunder as buyers began to shift over to smaller, lighter cars that could offer similar performance for less money than the full size car. Prices ranged from $2,671-$3,196. Weights were approximately 3,325-3,895 lbs.
The Impala was completely redesigned for 1965 and featured a more streamlined look, rather than the boxy look of previous years. The new Impala was advertised as having “foam-cushioned seats, deep twist carpeting, new engines and transmissions and Wide-stance handling”. The Sport Coupe had a new fastback roofline. (Impala SS engine options included the 230ci 140hp I-6, 283ci 195hp V-8, 327ci 250 V-8, 327ci 300 V-8, 396ci 4 bbl 325 V-8, 396ci 4 bbl 425 V-8, 409ci 4 bbl 340hp V-8 and the 409ci 4 bbl 400hp V-8.) In February, the mighty 409 was phased out and was replaced by the Mark IV 396 cid V8, which would power Chevrolets for the rest of the '60s. The new 396 could be mated to a new automatic transmission, the Turbo Hydra-matic 350. The 396 was a direct descendant of the "Daytona Mystery Engine" The 409s and 396s were available in all Impalas, including four door sedans and station wagons, but the Impala SS continued as a separate series. 1965 also saw the introduction of the Caprice option on the Impala and came standard with a V8. The '65 model also featured round triple taillights - a classic Impala styling cue. The frame was changed from the old X-member to a new “full-perimeter” type that supported the new larger bodies, provided superior strength and enhanced quietness and ride comfort. Full-size SS sales would never again be so high. Gasoline was still relatively cheap, and the rate of passenger car travel continued to grow, with statistics showing a 21 percent increase from 1960 to 1965. The boom of the '50s continued into the '60s, with the Chevrolet Impala leading the way. Prices ranged from $2,672-$3,212. Weights were approximately 3,385-4,005 lbs.
By 1966, the Impala SS was beginning to lose its luster. The Caprice became the new top of the line Chevrolet, stealing the Impala's luxury image while the SS was becoming more of an appearance package rather than a performance one. (Impala SS engine options included the 250ci 155hp I-6, 283ci 195hp V-8, 283ci 4 bbl 220hp V-8, 327ci 4 bbl 275hp V-8, 396ci 4 bbl 325 V-8, 427ci 4 bbl 390hp V-8 and the 427ci 4 bbl 425hp V-8.) The Impala also lost its signature six round taillights, which had been an Impala trademark since 1958. New large rectangular ones replaced them along with a more massively styled front end. The Mark IV 396 continued, but a larger 427 version was introduced. It was rated at 390 bhp, while the "special performance" version was rated at 425 bhp due to solid lifters, four-barrel carb with aluminum manifold and heavy duty four bolt main block. The 427 was available with a special performance, extra rugged, extra noisy, four speed manual transmission, called the "rock-crusher." The Impala SS sales were down by more than 50% to 119,312 due to lost sales to the Caprice and smaller midsize performance muscle cars. Prices ranged from $2,684-$3,199. Weights were approximately 3,430-4,005 lbs.
The 1967 Impala was again restyled, looking longer and heavier, with the fastback roof design being even more pronounced. (Impala SS engine options included the 250ci 155hp I-6, 283ci 195hp V-8, 327ci 4 bbl 275hp V-8, 396ci 4 bbl 325 V-8 and the 427ci 4 bbl 385hp V-8.) On the SS models, the new front grille featured blacked-out horizontal strips, and on the rear was a black panel insert between the taillights. The SS identification could be found on the grille, trunk lid and each front fender. In the interior the SS identification was limited to an SS emblem on the glovebox door. The Impala SS sales continued to fall as buyers increasingly turned away from full-size performance. The SS began to look more and more like the standard Impala, with only a black accented lower body sill and bright fender moldings on the SS. The SS 427 came with a unique domed hood with three simulated air ducts, large SS 427 emblems in the center of the grille and on the rear panel between the taillights, HD suspension components and Red Line 8.25 x 14 tires on 14” x 6” rims. The Impala also had a host of new safety and convenience features, including a dual master cylinder brake system, an energy absorbing steering column, and an ignition switch illuminated by the first use of fiber optics technology to appear in a Chevrolet. Prices ranged from $2,723-$3,234. Weights were approximately 3,455-3,990 lbs.
In 1968 due to the increased emphasis on luxury, the Impala SS reverted back to an option package (RPO Z03 at $179), and was ordered on only 38,210 out of 710,900 Impalas. (Impala SS engine options included the 250ci 155hp I-6, 307ci 200hp V-8, 327ci 4 bbl 250hp V-8, 327ci 4 bbl 275hp V-8, 396ci 4 bbl 325 V-8, 427ci 4 bbl 385hp V-8 and the 427ci 4 bbl 425hp V-8.) The SS option was now available on three models, the convertible, the Sport Coupe (hardtop coupe), and the Custom Coupe. Both the 396 and 427 engines continued, despite continued falling sales. The SS 427 package continued as RPO Z24, with the 385hp 427ci engine, but a 425hp 427ci was optionally available. This was the L72 427 with the big port heads, aluminum intake and Holley 780 cfm combination, 11.0:1 compression and a solid-lifter camshaft. In addition to the minor facelift on the 1968 Impala, new styling features included hideaway windshield wipers and front and rear side-mounted marker lights, which were federally mandated. On the rear, the Impala returned to the three-per-side taillight motif, but these were mounted within the new bumper. Prices ranged from $2,846-$3,197. Weights were approximately 3,250-3,940 lbs.
The year 1969 marked the end of the Super Sport Impala. Due to poor sales, Chevrolet eliminated the SS option on all full size cars except one, the Impala SS 427. (Impala SS included only the 427ci 4 bbl 390hp V-8 or the 427ci 4 bbl 425hp V-8.) The 1969 Impala SS option ($422) featured new pontoon-bulge fender lines and new "full door glass" which eliminated the vent windows. The SS identification was limited to an SS emblem on the steering wheel in the interior. Exterior identification was limited to a blacked-out grille with the SS lettering in the center, and fender and trunk lid emblems. Only 2,455 copies of the Impala SS 427 were sold, which ensured that this would be the last year of the famed Impala SS. The Impala line would continue, sporting the new 454 cid V8 engine for 1970 and surviving well into the late 1970s. But the Impala would never recapture its performance image and became just a luxury full-size car. But in retrospect, an impressive 918,000 Impala SS were manufactured, a true testament to its significance. Prices ranged from $2,927-$3,465. Weights were approximately 3,640-4,285 lbs.
Impala ruled America's roads during the '60s. Impala embodied the Chevrolet "magic formula" at its very best, and customers gobbled them up, with 7.8 million sold from '60 to '69. The Chevrolet Impala was America's favorite car at the beginning of the '60s, at the end, and during every year in between. "Never in recent history has the demand for our top models equipped with a maximum of options been as strong," said then-Chevrolet general manager Semon "Bunkie" Knudsen.
To keep up with demand, Impala evolved at a frenetic rate, introducing all-new designs in '61 and '65, and styling changes every year of the '60s. Impala’s landmark year was 1965 when Chevrolet sold more than one million Impalas in that year alone. A record no other nameplate has ever topped. Suddenly, the Impala name almost seemed prophetic - the car named for an animal capable of extraordinary leaps had bounded from nonexistence to history's top seller in just six years.
History of the Impala - The 1970's
'The Impala has played an important role in Chevrolet's success,' said Robert Lund, then-Chevrolet's general sales manager, 'by pioneering and consistently leading the industry trend to high styling and greater luxury in popular priced cars.'
In 1970 the Impala received the usual facelift which resulted in minor changes to the front, rear and sides. The front bumper was replaced with a split grille theme. The leading edge of the front fenders was squared off so they no longer played a dominant role in the front end design. The three distinctive taillights were on each side and once again recessed within the bumper. A new big block was introduced in 1970- the 454. Two variants were available: one rated at 345hp and the other at 390hp. Next in line was the 300hp 350ci and the 265hp 400ci. The 307 was the basic mill. If you ordered the Impala custom coupe, it was outfitted with front disc brakes, but other Impalas received drum brakes on all four wheels. Prices ranged from $3,021-$3,377. Weights were approximately 3,641-3,871 lbs.
The 1971 Impala received small changes in outward appearance. The emphasis continued to be on luxury and the resemblance to the Cadillac remained a fundamental connection for the Impala image. The Impala became as big as they’d ever be with a 1971 redesign introducing round-sided “fuselage” styling on a new 121.5” wheelbase. Engines included the standard 250 ci 145 bhp I-6 as well as the optional engines: 350 ci 270 bhp V8, 400 ci 255 bhp V8, 402 ci 300 bhp V8 and the 454 ci 365 bhp V8. Prices ranged from $3,391-$4,021. Weights were approximately 3,391-4,021 lbs.
In '72, Impala all-time sales topped the 10 million mark, extending its lead as the best-selling full-size car in automotive history . . . more than double the sales of the next nearest competitor at the time, the Ford Galaxie. Design changes for 1972 were minimal. Impala's length was stretched to 219.9 inches, making it the longest Impala yet and still the best-selling full-size car in the U.S. to date. Impala offered enhanced comfort, roominess, safety, improved ride and handling, and a list of options that buyers a decade earlier may never have dreamed of . . . such as air conditioning with automatic temperature control, electric door locks and an AM/FM stereo with tape player. It should be noted when making performance comparisons between the 1972 and newer Impalas to the 1971 and older Impalas that there were new methods to determine horsepower ratings. The 1972 and newer cars were rated on net horsepower rather than gross horsepower, which resulted in lower numbers. However, the 365hp 454ci engine from 1971 delivered the same real world performance as the 270hp 454ci from 1972. Engines included the standard 250 ci 110 bhp I-6 as well as the optional engines: 350 ci 200 bhp V8, 400 ci 170 bhp V8, 402 ci 210 bhp V8 and the 454 ci 270 bhp V8. The Impala convertible (6,456 built in 1972) was history after 1972. Prices ranged from $3,720-$3,979. Weights were approximately 3,720-4,150 lbs.
In 1973, Impala's success continued, again outselling every other car in the country. Tightening government regulations and a fuel crisis, however, would change the automobile industry - and the Impala - forever. The impact of the 1973 oil embargo on the industry was dramatic. Gasoline prices doubled between 1973 and 1979. Industry car sales plummeted 20 percent between '73 and '74, and for the first time in recent history, annual passenger car travel in the U.S. actually went down. The turmoil left Americans groping for more fuel-efficient transportation, and the trend in popularity toward lighter, smaller cars was here to stay. Changes to the Impala from 1972 to 1976 were minimal. Performance orientation was sidetracked while issues such as pollution control and safety took center stage. And as the popularity of small cars and fuel economy increased, the Impala looked increasingly out of place and out of touch with what most people wanted. Engines included the standard 350 ci 145 bhp V8 as well as the optional engines: 350 ci 200 bhp V8, 400 ci 170 bhp V8, 402 ci 210 bhp V8 and the 454 ci 270 bhp V8. Prices ranged from $3,752-$3,836. Weights were approximately 4,087-4,162 lbs.
The 1974 Impala got a more squarish grille and a rear end reprofiled to accept the newly required 5-mph bumper. In 1974 Chevrolet introduced a limited-edition “Spirit of America” Impala painted red and white with blue accent stripes and special wheels. It was a failed attempt to create an exclusive Impala for the upcoming bicentennial. Engines included the standard 350 ci 145 bhp V8 as well as the optional engines: 350 ci 160 bhp V8, 400 ci 150 bhp V8, 400 ci 180 bhp V8 and the 454 ci 235 bhp V8. Prices ranged from $4,135-$4,229. Weights were approximately 4,167-4,256 lbs.
The 1975 Impala four-door Sport Sedan got the same new roofline as its Caprice counterpart, but had a different grille insert, no rear fender skirts, and a somewhat less opulent interior. In 1975 a landau coupe was introduced with a thick padded roof over the rear portion of the passenger compartment. In its first season less than 2500 landau coupes were sold. After several unsuccessful years this model was dropped. Engines included the standard 350 ci 145 bhp V8 as well as the optional engines: 350 ci 155 bhp V8, 400 ci 175 bhp V8 and the 454 ci 235 bhp V8. Prices ranged from $4,631-$5,121. Weights were approximately 4,190-4,959 lbs.
The 1976 kept the 1975 “hand–me-down” front end and finished out the last year of the large size Impala before the complete redesign in 1977. New front end styling and engine/brake refinements were included. The Sport Coupe was also dropped for 1976 and the Impala Sedan was added. The Impala refined its “swept back” front end look with new round quad headlights (as on the 1975 Caprice). At the rear were triple-unit wraparound taillights. Engines included the standard 305 ci 145 bhp V8 as well as the optional engines: 350 ci 165 bhp V8, 400 ci 175 bhp V8 and the 454 ci 225 bhp V8. Prices ranged from $4,507-$5,283. Weights were approximately 4,175-4,972 lbs.
The 1977 downsizing of the popular full-size Impala was a risky gamble for Chevrolet. Chevrolet offered an assortment of smaller, more fuel-efficient cars, and redesigned the Impala once again in 1977 to meet changing demands. Wheelbase was cut by 5.5”, overall length cut 10.6”, they were 4” narrower and curb weight was cut by more than 700 pounds. Engines were downsized, too. The 454 big block was history. There hadn’t been such a radical difference in two consecutive model years since 1959. Production increased in '77 versus a year prior, and Impala was named Motor Trend Car of the Year. Compared to the 1977 Impalas, the Impalas of the late 1960’s and mid-1970’s might as well have been from an episode of the Flintstones. The Impala “S” model and Sport Sedans were dropped. All models had pillars. Impalas had an 8 x 3 hole eggcrate grille pattern with center Bowtie emblem, plus quad rectangular headlamps over quad park/signal lamps. The new Impalas were shorter in length, taller in stature and narrower. Impala embodied the new image of the full-size American car - smaller, lighter, more efficient. (For example, even with its trim dimensions, the new Impala featured increased headroom, legroom and trunk space.) The formula seemed to work. All-time sales passed the 12-million mark. The Impala had adapted once again. The 1977 Impala/Caprice was a style leader. It wasn’t sexy like the 1962 Impala Super Sport with a four speed and a 409, but this was the age of practicality. The big 400 and 454 ci engines were gone, but with the most powerful engine and the F-41 suspension (HD springs and shock absorbers and larger sway bars) the car handled like no other full size sedan. With 700 pounds less weight to carry from the previous Impala, the improvement in handling didn’t go unnoticed. A new diagnostic connector under the hood allowed up to 35 engine tests. The new Impala/Caprice sedans were an immediate hit. Impala put more than a quarter million cars on the road each year for three consecutive years: 1977, 1978 and 1979. These “B-body” Impalas would continue in use, with a minor 1980 facelift, through 1990 (only as a Caprice from 1986-1990). Each year the Impala received moderate face-lifts. Engines included the standard 250 ci 110 bhp I-6 as well as the optional engines: 305 ci 145 bhp V8 and the 350 ci 170 bhp V8. For 1977 prices ranged from $4,876-$5,406. Weights were approximately 3,533-4,072 lbs.
1978 brought about few changes except for front and rear styling treatments. The Impala carried a new horizontal-bar grille with a Bowtie above rather than on the grille itself. Reduced axle ratios were added for greater fuel economy. The two door Impala Coupe was a rather rare version, while the Impala Landau coupe was even rarer. Engines included the standard 250 ci (4.1L) 110 bhp I-6 as well as the optional engines: 305 ci 145 bhp V8 and the 350 ci 170 bhp V8. For 1978 prices ranged from $5,208-$5,904. Weights were approximately 3,511-4,071 lbs.
Chevy’s Impala with its sharply creased design entered its third season for 1979 with few changes except for front and rear styling refinements and subtle differences in side view. The Impala grille had a new “ladder style” with wide squat holes. Engines included the standard 250 ci 115 bhp I-6 as well as the optional engines: 305 ci 130 bhp V8 and the 350 ci 170 bhp V8. Prices ranged from $5828-$6,636. Weights were approximately 3,495-4,045 lbs.
History of the Impala - The 1980's
With the U.S. economy sucking wind in 1980, every car manufacturer struggled to sell cars. Impala took a big hit in sales from 1980 to 1985. Chevrolet full-size cars in the 1980s became increasingly more sophisticated as new technologies became available. Impala’s restyled grille had vertical bars over smaller segments. The Impala got a smoother, lower nose and rear-end revisions that slightly reduced aerodynamic drag and a 100-pound weight loss as an aid to fuel economy. EPA ratings of 18 MPG city, 26 highway, were the highest ever for a full-size Chevrolet. A thriftier 229 ci V6 replaced the old 250 inline six as the base power unit. Engines included the new standard 229 ci (3.8L) 115 bhp V6 as well as the optional engines: 267 ci 120 bhp V8 and the 305 ci 155 bhp V8.The revised roofline provided a slightly more formal look. For 1980 prices ranged from $6,615-$11,203. Weights were approximately 3,344-7,186 lbs.
In 1981, Chevrolet introduced Computer Command Control on its full-size cars for improved driveability, and a new four-speed automatic was available with the 350 V8, along with a 26 mpg EPA highway mileage figure. Impala received a three-section argent finished grille with strong horizontal bars and recessed vertical divider bars, forming large holes in an 8 x 3 pattern. An Impala nameplate stood on the pillar behind the rear door. Mileage-boosting mechanical changes were the main news for 1981. Chevy still courted law enforcement agencies in 1981 with a special Police Package for the big Impala sedan. Engines included the standard 229 ci 110 bhp V6 as well as the optional engines: 267 ci 115 bhp V8 and the 305 ci 150 bhp V8. For 1981 prices ranged from $7,129-$7,765. Weights were approximately 3,354-3,897 lbs.
In 1982 the only models wearing the Impala nameplate were a four-door sedan and a station wagon and looked about the same as last year. Engines included the standard 229 ci 110 bhp V6 as well as the optional engines: 267 ci 115 bhp V8, 305 ci 145 bhp V8 and the 350 ci 105 bhp V8. For 1982 prices ranged from $7,918-$8,670. Weights were approximately 3,361-4,050 lbs.
In 1983, a four door sedan was all that was left of Impala. The popularity of sport sedans, or sport anything for that matter was not advancing during tough economic times. Engines included the standard 229 ci (3.8L) 110 bhp V6 as well as the optional engines: 305 ci 150 bhp V8 and the 350 ci 105 bhp V8. For 1983 prices ranged from $8,331-$8,556. Weights were approximately 3,490-3,594 lbs.
1984 marked the return of the two-door coupe to the Caprice, but not to the Impala which kept only the four-door model. External appearance was unchanged. Engines included the standard 229 ci 110 bhp V6 as well as the optional engines: 305 ci 150 bhp V8 and the 350 ci 105 bhp V8. For 1984 prices ranged from $8,895-$9,270. Weights were approximately 3,489-3,628lbs
1985 changes were limited to improvements such as a more controlled ride and a new base engine (4.3L 140 bhp V6). The Caprice name took over the uplevel position in Chevrolet's full-size passenger car lineup. In 1986, the Impala name was dropped effective with the 1985 model year. While the “B-body” car would continue on as a Caprice, the Impala would not be seen again until 1994. Engines included the new standard 262 ci (4.3L) 140 bhp V6 as well as the optional engines: 305 ci 165 bhp V8 and the 350 ci 105 bhp V8. For 1985 prices ranged from $9,519-$9,759. Weights were approximately 3,508-3,634 lbs.
History of the Impala - The 1990's
Jump ahead to 1992, as the rebodied Caprice is being perceived as a cross between an upside-down bathtub and a beached whale. Chevy Studio Chief John Albert noticed his neighbor had lowered and customized a late-model Caprice wagon with big wheels and dark paint. He liked it so much that he showed it to Chevrolet General Manager Jim Perkins. Perkins instructed John Moss to work up a similar car for the 1992 Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association (SEMA) Show. Because it was such a hit at the show, it was rolling off the production lines 14 months later for the '94 model year. It was named the Impala SS, in honor of the early musclecar. This is the first time since 1969 that the Impala had an SS model in the lineup. It included 17" aluminum wheels, the all-mighty LT1, monochromatic black paint, and a leather interior. It also sported a familiar badge from the past — Impala SS. It captured the carefree, sporty spirit of the Impala name, with unique C-pillars reminiscent of earlier Impalas. It had an aggressive monochromatic black exterior, "retro" Impala logos and 17-inch five-spoke aluminum wheels.
If radiusing the rear wheel openings was the most significant styling change, the next best change was to the C-Pillar on Impala SS models. Chevrolet still used the same sheetmetal as the 91-93 cars for both the Caprice & Impala, but needed a place to put the oval leaping impala emblem. They came up with a small plastic piece that filled in the trailing triangle edge of the C-Pillar windows which significantly changed the styling by giving the rear quarter window a more rounded look. Also new for Impala SS cars was a much better looking grill that replaced the chrome Caprice grill was a body colored piece, split top to bottom with a single horizontal bar and a bow tie in the middle. Only Impala SS cars got the revised C-Pillar treatment and grill, but all 1994 cars had the instrument console and dash board updated. The new instrument console was digital and much more compact. The portion of the dash in front of the driver raised over the instrument cluster is much smaller and nicely rounded. Please note the mirrors on the 94 SS were mounted on the door as opposed to in the window of the later years.
While not really a styling change, 1994 was the first year for the LT1 engine in B-Body cars. All LT1 B-Body cars came equipped with dual exhausts, so if you see dual tips in the back, it is a 94 or later LT1 car. The "Baby LT-1" featured in most Caprices looks very similar, but featured a single exhaust.
It was the first four-door to wear the "SS" designation, and the first Impala SS in 25 years. It was a shot of adrenaline for American auto buyers who were nostalgic about the days when real musclecars roamed the roads and the original Impala SS of 409 fame ruled the planet. The Impala SS debuted in 1994 as a high performance model based on the full-size Caprice platform. It was the first four-door sedan to carry the fabled "Impala SS" name (except for 1961, all previous SS models were coupes or convertibles), but Chevrolet made sure that it lived up to its heritage. As such, it sported rear wheel drive, a 115.9 inch wheelbase, and a commanding presence on the road. The Impala SS was only available in black and featured a body-colored grille, body-color front and rear fascias, rocker moldings, door handles and key locks, taillamp moldings, body-colored raised Impala SS logos along the rear fenders, a unique rear deck-lid spoiler, and Impala emblems on the sail panels and rear deck lid. The interior featured a gray leather interior with deeply contoured front bucket seats and black satin finish on the instrument panel and door trim panels. But the heart of a muscle car is the engine, and Chevrolet didn't disappoint there. Replacing the Caprice's rather weak 180 bhp V8 was a new Corvette-derived 5.7 liter LT1 V8 with Sequential Fuel Injection, recalibrated to deliver 260 bhp at 5,000 rpm and 330 lb-ft. of torque at 2,400 rpm. The engine was hooked up to the standard GM electronically controlled 4L60-E four speed automatic transmission with a 3.08:1 final-drive ratio and a limited slip differential. Chevrolet also added a special ride and handling suspension derived from the Chevrolet law enforcement package for its Caprices and threw in a quick-ratio power steering unit (12.7:1 vs. the standard 15.3:1 ratio). Tuned front and rear stabilizer bars and de Carbon gas-pressure shocks helped the Impala keep its composure in the twisties while massive 17" x 8.5" five-spoke cast-alloy wheels fitted with huge P255/50ZR17 tires kept the Impala SS connected to the road. Standard four-wheel, 12" diameter ventilated disc brakes and a 4-wheel anti-lock braking system brought the car to a stop if things got out of hand. For 1994 the SS price was $21,920. Weight was approximately 4,218 lbs.
Changes were minor for 1995. Whereas the previous year had a small plastic insert in the window just forward of the C-pillar, in 1995 this curve was stamped into the body panels. Impalas could now be ordered in two more colors: Dark Cherry metallic (a dark purple), and Dark Green-Gray Metallic. Also, the mirrors moved from being door mounted to being mounted on the window frame and could now foldaway. Changes were minor for 1996, the last year of the Impala SS. The shifter was now mounted on the console and the dash sported an analog gauge cluster. The fuel pressure and voltage gauges were dropped, but a tachometer and analog speedometer was added. In 1995, the sheet metal at the revised, so there was no longer a need for the plastic filler in rear quarter window. Also new for '95 were more aerodynamic outside mirrors. The old mirrors were pods mounted on stalks; a design that was unchanged since the mid-70's. The new mirrors flow out from the leading edge of the front windows and made rear visibility much better. That's it for 1995. The engine stayed the same with the 5.7 liter (350 ci) LT1 V8 with 260 bhp. Both caprices and Impalas got these changes. For 1995 the SS price was $22,910. Weight was approximately 4,036 lbs.
1996 was the last year and arguably the best for Impala SS's. There were no changes to the Caprice, and no external changes to the Impala SS, but inside the Impala got its shifter moved off the steering column and into the center console. It also received a new instrument cluster with analog gauges and a large tachometer, very similar to the instrument cluster in Z-28 Camaros. Like Impalas before it, the SS offered excellent handling, thanks to a lowered sport suspension with DeCarbon gas-pressurized shocks and four-wheel disc brakes. With these final changes, the Impala SS was just about perfect! Production of the Impala SS actually lasted until December 13, 1996 (well into the 1997 model year), but all Impala SS's built were labeled as 1996 models. The engine stayed the same with the 5.7 liter (350 ci) LT1 V8 with 260 bhp. For 1996 the SS price was $24,405. Weight was approximately 4,036 lbs.
Unfortunately, Chevy decided to end the Caprice model after the '96 season, forcing the Impala to be discontinued as well. Since its brief run, '94 to '96 SS models have taken on a "collectible" quality. But at its heart, Impala SS once again followed the same "magic formula" that Impalas had perfected over decades of popular success.
History of the Impala - 2000
During its long ride, touching five decades of tumultuous change in the automotive industry and in society as a whole, Impala evolved with the times.
It's only fitting that the Impala should adapt again to meet the unique customer demands of the 21st century. The 2000 Impala recreates the same magic formula that brought success to generations of Impalas before it: A good-looking car, with more performance, amenities and value than you might expect, at a Chevrolet price. Despite these changes, however, the four-door sedan continues to be America's top-selling body style, bar none. According to statistics, four doors made up 77 percent of all cars sold in America in the first half of 1998 - a number that has increased steadily for seven straight years.
As history's best-selling full-size nameplate, Impala was designed to succeed from the beginning. From its birth in the late '50s, Impala has stayed true to then-chief engineer Ed Cole's original vision of it as a "prestige car within the reach of the average American citizen." Although it evolved through the years, Impala always followed a simple, time-tested "magic formula" - provide a good-looking car with more performance, amenities and value than you might expect, all at a Chevrolet price.
General Motors reintroduced the Impala in mid-1999 as a 2000 model. Five and one-half years had slipped by since the last Impala received its badges. The latest Impala, like its predecessor, was introduced in a single body style: four door sedan. The engines available are the 3.4 liter (205 ci) V-6 180hp and the 3.8liter (231 ci) V-6 200hp. While the newest Impala has lots to offer, it may not be enough considering the Impala history. Its styling will blend subtle hints of Impala's proud heritage among its contemporary lines. Its smooth, quiet ride, its ample power and its confidence-inspiring handling and braking will make Impala a pleasure to drive. It makes no bold statements and easily blends into a parking lot of imports and domestic sedans. Though technically a midsize on its shared (cousin to the Monte Carlo) 110.5” wheelbase, it was more space-efficient than the previous rear wheel drive Impalas. The latest in the Impala lineage is a completely different breed. The new version follows the industry-wide trend of powering the front wheels….and with only a V-6. There is a bit of Impala retrospective with the round headlights and taillights (however, there were only two instead of the traditional three Impala taillights). The design team borrowed from the 1965 Impala. The wheels, while smaller in size at 16” than the 1994-1996 Impala 17” wheels, resemble the previous Impala SS wheels. It also includes those little "extras" that you might not have expected from an everyday passenger car: radio/data-system stereo, 17 item message center, passlock theft deterrent, daytime running lights and optional items such as dual zone climate control, leather upholstery and an air filtration system. The Impala was available in two trim levels from 2000 to 2001. The base model came equipped with cloth bench seats, the 180 horsepower (130 kW) 3.4 liter (204 cu in) LA1 V6, and a 3-gauge instrument cluster. The LS came factory-equipped with cloth bucket seats upgradeable to leather with center console and floor shift, color-keyed "Impala" door scripts and trunk badge, anti-lock brakes, traction control system, keyless remote entry, integrated foglamps, 4-gauge instrument cluster, and the 200 horsepower (150 kW) 3.8 liter (231 cu in) L36 V6. Options available on all models included a sunroof, OnStar system, rear decklid spoiler, Driver Information Center with built-in HomeLink system, heated power front seats, and 16 inch 1990s SS-inspired wheels. All options found or available on the LS were available on the base model. All models came equipped with power windows, door locks and mirrors.
For 2000 the Impala price ranged from $18,890-$22,790. Weights ranged from approximately 3,389-3,466 lbs.
2001 revealed no major changes. The Impala LS received the OnStar communications system as standard equipment. The engines remained the 3.4 liter (205 ci) V-6 180hp and the 3.8liter (231 ci) V-6 200hp. For 2001 the Impala price ranged from $19,269-$23,345. Weight was approximately 3,466 lbs.
2002, Chevrolet introduced the LS Sport appearance package. Added to the LS model, it offered a 6-gauge cluster, front bumper extension, color-keyed tail light panels and a chrome exhaust pipe tip.
2003, the "Impala" badges that adorned the front doors were dropped on the base model , like on all GM W-body cars (except for the Chevrolet Monte Carlo and Pontiac Grand Prix).
2004 to 2005 Impala SS came equipped with the 3.8 liter (231 cu in) supercharged L67 V6 engine. It was rated at 240 horsepower (180 kW) and had been previously used in the Pontiac Grand Prix GTP, Buick Regal GS and Pontiac Bonneville SSEI. The lightweight front wheel drive sedan was actually quicker than the vaunted 1990s Impala SS, with 0–60-mile-per-hour (0–97 km/h) times pushing 6.5 seconds compared to the earlier models' 7.1. Also released with this version were the Police Package and Undercover Police Package, named 9C1 and 9C3, respectively. Available only to law enforcement agencies, fire departments, and EMS agencies, it has had more success than its predecessor, the Lumina 9C3. The 9C1 was basically a base model with a stronger suspension and the 3.8 liter (231 cu in) V6 engine. It was only available in a few basic colors. Another addition was the "SURV MODE" switch which replaced the fog light switch found on the LS. This enabled the driver to turn off all lights in the vehicle and "hide"; something not allowed with the civilian models as automatic headlights were standard. The 9C3 was comparably equipped to the 9C1, but the ability to add other convenience options and more paint and interior choices set the 9C3 apart.
2006-09 Impala SS
The 2006 Impala was introduced at the 2005 Los Angeles Auto Show. Like the Buick LaCrosse, this model uses the updated GM W platform. The base engine is a 3.5 liter (214 cu in) V6 producing 211 horsepower (157 kW). The new Impala features new taillights, different from the four-circle style of the previous generation. The most notable news about the model, though, is the SS model's use of the Generation IV small-block V8 in a front-wheel drive Chevrolet for the first time, and the first V8 in a Chevrolet sedan since the 1996 Caprice: the new 5.3 liter (325 cu in) V8 (with Displacement on Demand, now called Active Fuel Management or AFM) produces 303 horsepower (226 kW). With the use of the 5.3 liter LS4 V8, the Impala SS is capable of a 5.6 second 0–60-mile-per-hour (0–97 km/h) time and a quarter-mile time of 14.2 seconds traveling at 101 miles per hour (163 km/h). The car is 200.4 inches (5,091 mm) long, 58.7 inches (1,491 mm) high, and 72.9 inches (1,851 mm) wide. Available trim levels are LS, LT, LTZ and the aforementioned SS. The interior has been completely redesigned. The 2006 Impala featured a wood trim center console with chrome accents on all major control buttons. The dashboard featured a chrome Impala logo embedded in the wood grain trim that runs across the front of the vehicle and onto the doors. The new control knobs found throughout the vehicle's cockpit are similar to those found in the new Buick models as well as the Cadillac DTS, all of which feature a similar center console. Another interior revision is the location of the cup holders, which are now concealed beneath the mid-section of the vehicle's center console.
The Impala was redesigned in 2006 and receives only minor changes for 2007. First, a new 3.9-liter V-6 gets Active Fuel Management. The 3.5-liter V-6 E85 sedans received Flex Fuel badge. A tire-pressure-monitoring system is standard. The LT gets standard 16-inch, 5-spoke alloy wheels, while the SS gets standard leather-appointed seats and XM Satellite Radio, with XM being optional on LS, LT, and LTZ trims. The generation-7 OnStar system with Turn-by-Turn navigation is standard when the available Directions & Connections service is selected. Also, there are four new exterior shades—Precisions Red, Imperial Blue Metallic, Bordeaux Red, and Red Jewel Tintcoat. The Impala receives several new colors, and an AFM-equipped 3.9 liter (237 cu in) V6 for 2007, as well as a Regency-outfitted "Impala RSS". The RSS will include more aggressive rims, front/rear bumper and rocker panel extensions, a BMW M-inspired spoiler and various interior upgrades. The 9C1 and 9C3 models receive an aluminized interior trim instead of the standard wood grain.
2009 Chevrolet Impala LT E85 Flex Fuel
The Impala receives the Flex Fuel feature seen in other GM vehicles on the LS, LT, LTZ, 9C1 and 9C3 models. The SS retains the same drivetrain and does not receive the FlexFuel feature due to the high performance nature of the powertrain. The Police Sedans receive the FlexFuel feature to compete against the Ford Crown Victoria Police 454 cu in (7.4 L) 345 bhp (257 kW; 350 PS) to 390 bhp (291 kW; 395 PS) Turbo-Jet, 1970-1976
Interceptor, which also received a similar feature allowing it to utilize E85. Also, the 9C1 and 9C3 are, at this point, equipped with an external trunk lock tumbler. Neither feature is available to the civilian version of the car.
2006-09 Chevrolet Impala Police Cruiser
Also updated are the 9C1 & 9C3 trim levels for Police Package models, which do not have the civilian SS's 303 horsepower (226 kW) V8 engine available, but instead use the 3.9 liter (237 cu in) V6. The reason for this is that the Police Sedans utilize the SS radiator and cooling system as an upgrade from the standard 3.9 liter engine (used in the Impala LTZ). GM did not wish to design a specific radiator and cooling system to equip a low-production V8 police vehicle. Also, the heavy-duty steel wheels were not redesigned, and as such, the Police Sedan uses the original center caps or the older style wheel covers. A factory spoiler is an available option, and cruise control and a CD player are standard.
Impala SS Performance
• 0-60 mph: 5.6
• 0-100 mph: 13.9
• 0-130 mph: 28.5
• 1/4 mile: 14.2 @ 101 mph
• Top Speed: 154 mph (Drag limited)
50th Anniversary Edition
To commemorate the 50th year of Chevrolet Impala, a special 50th Anniversary Edition went on sale in Spring 2008. Based on the Impala LT, it adds the following:
• FE3 Sport Suspension (replaces the FE1 Touring Suspension)
• Four-wheel ABS
• Eighteen-inch SS style alloy wheels (replaces 16-inch wheels)
• Rear spoiler (SS style)
• "50th Anniversary" Impala badge on the C-pillar
• Two-tone, leather-trimmed seats and "50th" logo embroidered on the front headrests
• Eight-way power-adjustable driver seat (replaces six-way adjustability)
• Leather-wrapped steering wheel with accent-color thread (includes audio controls)
• Ebony carpet
• Ebony floor mats with accent threading
• "50th" Anniversary emblem on the sill plates
• Two premium exterior colors: Black Granite Metallic or Red Jewel Tintcoat
2009 Impala Olympic Edition
For the 2009 model year, the Impala receives three new exterior colors: Victory Red, Silver Ice Metallic, and Aqua Blue Metallic. The brushed aluminum dash applique is no longer available, and 9C1 and 9C3 police models switch to the techno metallic silver trim from the SS models. All models now use the previous SS style spoiler (actually phased in for the late 2008 model year). Leather seating is no longer available in combination with the 40/20/40 split bench front seat. The Active Fuel Management feature remains on the 5.3L V8 for the SS model, but is no longer available on 3.9L V6 for the LT and LTZ models. A sun and wheel package available on 1LT models includes power sunroof, overhead console with Homelink and 17" aluminum wheels. Thorax side-impact air bags were been added and are standard.
For the 2010 model year, the Impala will be the only W-body car that GM will have in production. Three new exterior colors will be available: Summit White, Cyber Gray Metallic, and Aqua Blue Metallic (this color was briefly available for the 2009 model year, and exclusive to the sun and wheel package on 1LT models). LT models now include fog lights. There will be many deletions for the 2010 model year. Four exterior colors will no longer be available: White, Dark Silver Metallic, Mocha Bronze Metallic (this color was only available until December 2008) and Slate Metallic. The AM/FM stereo with 6-disc in-dash CD changer will no longer be available. The Trunk cargo net and (PDG) Convenience Package will not be available. The 2LT 3.9L model, as well as the SS model will no longer be available. Finally, the Impala emblems on rear sail panels as well as the LS badge on rear decklid have been deleted.
For the 2011 model year, the GM badges near the doors will be eliminated, like on most GM vehicles.
GM Media/Corporate Archives- Larry Kinsel & Julie Fiegal
GM Public Relations- Virginia Beaty (File #1-63524074)
NAISSO World Headquarters-“History of the Impala”
Impala 1958-2000 by Dan Burger & Robert Genat
Chevrolet SS Muscle Car Red Book by Peter Sessler
Chevrolet SS by Robert Genat
Impala & SS: 1958-1972 a Musclecar Portfolio by R.M. Clarke
Standard Catalog of American Cars 1976-1999 by James Flammang & Ron Kowalke
Chevrolet Chronicle –The Complete & Colorful Story of Chevrolet from 1904 by the Auto Editors of Consumer Guide
• 235 cu in (3.9 L) Blue Flame, 1958-1962
• 230 cu in (3.8 L) 140 bhp (104 kW; 142 PS) Turbo Thrift, 1963-1965
• 250 cu in (4.1 L) 155 bhp (116 kW; 157 PS) Turbo Thrift, 1966-1969
• 283 cu in (4.6 L) 195 bhp (145 kW; 198 PS) to 220 bhp (164 kW; 223 PS) Turbo Fire, 1957-1967
• 307 cu in (5 L) 200 bhp (149 kW; 203 PS) Turbo Fire, 1968
• 327 cu in (5.4 L) 235 bhp (175 kW; 238 PS) to 375 bhp (280 kW; 380 PS) Turbo Fire, 1961-1969
• 350 cu in (5.7 L) 250 bhp (186 kW; 253 PS) to 350 bhp (261 kW; 355 PS) Turbo Fire, 1969-1980
• 400 cu in (6.6 L) 255 bhp (190 kW; 259 PS) to 265 bhp (198 kW; 269 PS) Turbo Fire, 1970-1976
• 348 cu in (5.7 L) 250 bhp (186 kW; 253 PS) to 350 bhp (261 kW; 355 PS) W-series Turbo Thrust, 1958-1961
• 409 cu in (6.7 L) 340 bhp (254 kW; 345 PS) to 425 bhp (317 kW; 431 PS) W-series Turbo Thrust, mid-1961 to early 1965 (This engine was featured in the Beach Boys song "409".)
• 396 cu in (6.5 L) 265 bhp (198 kW; 269 PS) to 425 bhp (317 kW; 431 PS) Turbo-Jet, mid-1965 to 1969
• 427 cu in (7 L) 335 bhp (250 kW; 340 PS) to 425 bhp (317 kW; 431 PS) Turbo-Jet, 1966-1969
History of the Impala - Production Figures
Year Black Dark Cherry Dark Gray Green Total Impalas
By Year* Total SS’s
1958 (No SS models) 181,469 0
1959 (No SS models) 473,000 0
1960 (No SS models) 511,925 0
1961 (SS available) 491,000 453
1962 (SS available) 704,900 99,311
1963 (SS available) 832,600 153,271
1964 (SS available) 889,600 185,523
1965 (SS available) 803,400 243,114
1966 (SS available) 654,900 119,314
1967 (SS available) 575,600 76,055
1968 (SS available) 710,900 38,210
1969 (SS available) 777,000 2,455
1970 (No SS models) 495,909 0
1971 (No SS models) 475,144 0
1972 (No SS models) 597,541 0
1973 (No SS models) 640,086 0
1974 (No SS models) 404,468 0
1975 (No SS models) 249,151 0
1976 (No SS models) 239,217 0
1977 (No SS models) 320,279 0
1978 (No SS models) 290,744 0
1979 (No SS models) 270,907 0
1980 (No SS models) 99,527 0
1981 (No SS models) 85,964 0
1982 (No SS models) 64,679 0
1983 (No SS models) 45,154 0
1984 (No SS models) 55,296 0
1985 (No SS models) 53,438 0
1994 (Only SS avail.) 6,303 0 0 0 6,303
1995 (Only SS avail.) 9,858 7,134 4,442 0 21,434
1996 (Only SS avail.) 19,085 12,180 10,676 0 41,941
2000 (no SS models) 221,173 0
2001 (no SS models) 150,599 0
2002 (no SS models) 143,695 0
Total 35,246 19,314 15,118 12,509,265 987,384
*Some Impala totals rounded to nearest 100 due to data available from GM
Last edited by 77Impala; 11-21-2009 at 08:48 AM..
|03-17-2009, 09:39 PM||#2 (permalink)|
1st Year of the 5th Generation
If anyone has more information regarding the 2002 to current Impalas please send me a PM.
1977 Impala Sedan, 5.0L, TH200, 2.56:1, 103K miles, 37 Lifetime Warranty Parts.
1997 Dodge Ram B2500, 5.2L, 36RH, 3.21:1, 375K miles, 32 Lifetime Warranty Parts.
|03-28-2009, 05:28 PM||#4 (permalink)|
Join Date: Dec 2008
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Wow!! Talk about good reading. Normally when I read a blog or post on a forum I get bored & get to the end. I couldn't stop reading the info on the Impala.
|11-21-2009, 08:50 AM||#5 (permalink)|
1st Year of the 5th Generation
I found some useful information on Wikipedia and updated the article.
More updates to follow latter.
1977 Impala Sedan, 5.0L, TH200, 2.56:1, 103K miles, 37 Lifetime Warranty Parts.
1997 Dodge Ram B2500, 5.2L, 36RH, 3.21:1, 375K miles, 32 Lifetime Warranty Parts.
|11-27-2009, 08:24 PM||#6 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Las Vegas, NV
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1996 Impala SS DCM, Powerdyne Supercharger 6 psi, 3.73s, Snow Performance Water/Meth injection, Borla catback system, Grotyohann long tube headers, Magnaflow high flow cats, Hotchkis springs, front and rear sway bars, Bilstein shocks, Vigilante 3000 stall TC.
|12-26-2009, 09:13 PM||#7 (permalink)|
Join Date: Dec 2009
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good website for all the 2000 to current impala specs every trim listed
|11-17-2010, 11:13 AM||#8 (permalink)|
Join Date: Sep 2010
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
The GM badges near the doors were actually eliminated during the 2010 model year. My early production 2010 Impala has them, but the new 2010 model year Impalas currently on the lot at the local Chevy dealer do not have them.
|11-17-2010, 12:54 PM||#9 (permalink)|
Join Date: Mar 2010
Thanked 561 Times in 306 Posts
In 2009, door sills got revised and bluetooth available on some models.
2009 Impala SS (sold 3/2012);
2010 Buick Enclave CXL;
2010 Lincoln MKS AWD Twin Turbo, Livernois Motor Sports tuned, K&N Typhoon CAI, 0-60 in 4.31 seconds
"Trying Times Are Not a Good Time To Quit Trying"
|11-18-2010, 08:44 AM||#11 (permalink)|
Join Date: Mar 2010
Thanked 561 Times in 306 Posts
Lots of discussion here:
2011 Chevy Impala / Caprice Discussion - Chevy Impala SS Forums
2009 Impala SS (sold 3/2012);
2010 Buick Enclave CXL;
2010 Lincoln MKS AWD Twin Turbo, Livernois Motor Sports tuned, K&N Typhoon CAI, 0-60 in 4.31 seconds
"Trying Times Are Not a Good Time To Quit Trying"
LinkBack to this Thread: http://www.impalaforums.com/resource-center/238822-history-of-the-chevrolet-impala-1958-2011-a.html
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