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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone,

I've been a long time econo-box driver (99 Ford Escort) and am considering upgrading to something a bit bigger now that my little car has bit the dust. I came across the Impala when reading consumer reviews on 2010-2015 sedans and they seem like a reliable vehicle overall. I do most of my own work on vehicles so ease of repair and reliability is a big concern to me. I was wondering if anyone could fill me in on any major known issues with the 8th generation Impala and if there is a certain model year, transmission, or engine to look for or avoid. I have noticed that some of these vehicles are being sold as fleet vehicles, so I would also like to know if there is a way to determine how long they've been idled for (do they have an hour meter like some other fleet vehicles)?

I apologize if my questions have been asked before, and please feel free to redirect me to another thread if that is the case.

Thanks in advance.
 

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2008 3.9
door actuators will break
conrtol moduals under glove box and or driver side
stabiltrac codes, reduce engine power codes, wheel sensors
wire harness on the front driver side of the car
MAF sensor, throttle body gets dirty (TPS sensor too)
cam shaft sensors.
the wiper socket wears out.
intake gasket oil pan and rear crank seal, tranny cooler lines
power steering pump
 

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I came across the Impala when reading consumer reviews on 2010-2015 sedans and they seem like a reliable vehicle overall.
If you get a 2013 or newer, you get the 6T70 transaxle and the 3.6L LFX engine. The older 4T65E transaxle had some issues early on. The direct injected 3.6L LFX is a wonderful engine, and much more powerful than the earlier 3.5 and 3.9 liter V6 engines.

[Edit]Make that 2012 or newer :)

My 2 cents.

Doug

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Hello everyone,

I've been a long time econo-box driver (99 Ford Escort) and am considering upgrading to something a bit bigger now that my little car has bit the dust. I came across the Impala when reading consumer reviews on 2010-2015 sedans and they seem like a reliable vehicle overall. I do most of my own work on vehicles so ease of repair and reliability is a big concern to me. I was wondering if anyone could fill me in on any major known issues with the 8th generation Impala and if there is a certain model year, transmission, or engine to look for or avoid. I have noticed that some of these vehicles are being sold as fleet vehicles, so I would also like to know if there is a way to determine how long they've been idled for (do they have an hour meter like some other fleet vehicles)?

I apologize if my questions have been asked before, and please feel free to redirect me to another thread if that is the case.

Thanks in advance.
When the latest generation Impala was introduced for the 2014 model year, the previous generation, which debuted in 2006, was built concurrently with the new Impala through the 2016 model year and renamed the Impala Limited. The Impala Limited was marketed exclusively to government, large companies, and rental agencies as a fleet vehicle, hence the moniker Impala Fleet. I'm not aware of any engine hour meter, but the police and taxi versions of the Limiteds are probably the only ones that have seen any excessive idling. I think those are all trim code 9C1. The others would likely all have driving histories similar to any privately owned vehicle.

It's my understanding that any newer Impala/Impala Limited - 2012 through 2016, I think - would be equipped with the far more reliable and superior 6-speed transmission. This would be a primary consideration for me if I were in the market. Also, the 3.6L LFX motor is the pick of the litter, IMO. More than enough power for a daily driver while still providing reasonable fuel economy in a full-sized sedan.

Overall, these cars are very solid. Most of their weak points are the same as those for any other newer vehicle. As mentioned above, the HVAC and door lock actuators are failure prone, but so are those on all the other newer offerings from every carmaker. Plastic sucks as a structural component. And seals eventually shrink and begin to leak, regardless of manufacturer. But aside from the 4-speed automatics and poorly engineered PCV barbs in earlier cars, the only weakness impacting reliability of which I'm aware is the propensity for early hub bearing failures. Fortunately, replacements are modular, easy to replace, and relatively cheap at just over $100 apiece from Rock Auto.
 

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I would definitely go with a 2012 up 3.6/6 speed automatic combo, whether it is a 2012, 2013, 2014-16 Limited or the the 2014 up new body style. I don't know much of anything about the 2014 and newer new body style, so my opinion is based on my 2014 Limited LTZ.

Good, reliable car overall. Maintenance is really nothing in my opinion and since you can spin your own wrenches, you should have no trouble. Use a good synthetic oil and good filter, use top tier fuel, and do a drain and fill on the trans every 30-40,000 miles with Dex 6 only and you will be fine. I have not experienced any HVAC actuator failures yet, but I did replace the front hub bearings and I am going to do the rear hubs soon. My rotors are warped again but I am still on the factory brakes with 115k miles on it, all highway. I have an LTZ which is decently loaded up and I made it better with a touch screen DVD, nav and bluetooth upgrade, along with the speakers and sub additions.

Parts are readily available locally, online and in junkyards. I am 6'2 and 233 lbs and at times I wish I had more space. The reality is that it is a great commuter, has been dead reliable for me, and has very reasonable horsepower and torque with respect to MPG. I have about 20 months of payments left and I am going to hold onto it for a little bit after it is paid off. In fact, if I get something else, I may just keep it as a back up. I rack up a lot of miles commuting back and forth to work so I probably won't get much for it anyway... my guess is it will have about 160,000 on it when paid off on schedule.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for all the information. I just bought a 2013 LTZ with 102k miles. I'll be doing the basic tune up maintenance on it shortly. I'm wondering if there is any sense in replacing the water pump and doing a coolant change at that mileage? Every vehicle I previously owned had timing belt driven water pumps that I changed with the belt every 100k miles.
 

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Imo, no need to touch the h2o pump unless it's failed. Your car has a timing chain. I'd drain/refill the coolant with 50/50 Dexcool. Petcock is on the pass. side of the radiator.
 

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Hello everyone,

I've been a long time econo-box driver (99 Ford Escort) and am considering upgrading to something a bit bigger now that my little car has bit the dust. I came across the Impala when reading consumer reviews on 2010-2015 sedans and they seem like a reliable vehicle overall. I do most of my own work on vehicles so ease of repair and reliability is a big concern to me. I was wondering if anyone could fill me in on any major known issues with the 8th generation Impala and if there is a certain model year, transmission, or engine to look for or avoid. I have noticed that some of these vehicles are being sold as fleet vehicles, so I would also like to know if there is a way to determine how long they've been idled for (do they have an hour meter like some other fleet vehicles)?

I apologize if my questions have been asked before, and please feel free to redirect me to another thread if that is the case.

Thanks in advance.
Bought a 2014 ltz with 10k. Now has 58k. I average 23mpg and get 28-34 gpm highway depending on speed etc. (65-80). At 54k 1 cam shaft sensor wend bad and a month later the other one went bad. Easy affordable diy. Other than that been a great car for the money.
But that being said all direct injection engines will have issues with coking on top end of motor as no detergent from gas helps to clean top end of engine.
 

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Thanks for all the information. I just bought a 2013 LTZ with 102k miles. I'll be doing the basic tune up maintenance on it shortly. I'm wondering if there is any sense in replacing the water pump and doing a coolant change at that mileage? Every vehicle I previously owned had timing belt driven water pumps that I changed with the belt every 100k miles.
Like @sheila said, no need for water pump replacement unless there is an actual problem with it. At 100,000 miles, spark plugs, coolant, trans fluid, power steering and brake fluid are all that should be needed. I would look at the struts and hub bearings, as well as the rest of the steering, suspension and brake parts to see what else may be worn out or close. You can do the spark plugs without removing the intake manifold and I would buy the factory AC Delco plugs, very cheap on Ebay. You can get the car up to snuff pretty easily and cheaply if DIY.
 

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Up until last December, I had a 2011 Impala LT (3500 V6) and it was absolutely, hands down the most reliable car I've ever owned. In five years of ownership, I never had a major repair—not one. The power steering pump had developed a small leak and the fluid needed topping up every five months or so. Also, I had to replace the blend door actuator to the right of the glove box, which directs the air flow to come in from the outside or to recirculate. I replaced it myself in about an hour. It was fairly economical to drive, generally doing about 21 in town and 28-30 on the highway, depending on traffic conditions. The best thing I ever did for that car was put a set of Michelin Premier tires on it. The original Goodyears were garbage but it was like an entirely different car with the Michelins. Sadly, I got rear-ended by a drunk driver in December and the car was totaled. No one was hurt, so that's a testament to the quality of its construction. It had almost 79k on the odometer. It went far too soon.

I replaced it with a 2013 Buick LaCrosse, which is essentially the same as a 2014-16 Impala. It's got the EcoAssist hybrid power plant. Performance is a little anemic but the fuel economy is phenomenal. It gets about 27 in town, which is close to what my Impala got on the highway. And highway mileage is around 36 or 37. My only gripes are the ridiculously small trunk—especially compared to my Impala—and the lack of a spare tire. The thing actually came with an air compressor that would also dispense fix-a-flat. Ridiculous. Needless to say, I remedied that problem post-haste.
 

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Like @sheila said, no need for water pump replacement unless there is an actual problem with it. At 100,000 miles, spark plugs, coolant, trans fluid, power steering and brake fluid are all that should be needed. I would look at the struts and hub bearings, as well as the rest of the steering, suspension and brake parts to see what else may be worn out or close. You can do the spark plugs without removing the intake manifold and I would buy the factory AC Delco plugs, very cheap on Ebay. You can get the car up to snuff pretty easily and cheaply if DIY.
I've seen several YouTube vids about the abundance of fake car parts from ebay and Amazon so be aware.
 

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Normally, Rock Auto is my go to. Every once in a while I will find it cheaper with free shipping on eBay or Amazon. So far I have never had an issue with anything from either of them. I try to plan my maintenance out so I can order parts online and not pay the jacked up counter price. I guess you do need to be careful, especially when the price is too good to be true.
 

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Hello everyone,

I've been a long time econo-box driver (99 Ford Escort) and am considering upgrading to something a bit bigger now that my little car has bit the dust. I came across the Impala when reading consumer reviews on 2010-2015 sedans and they seem like a reliable vehicle overall. I do most of my own work on vehicles so ease of repair and reliability is a big concern to me. I was wondering if anyone could fill me in on any major known issues with the 8th generation Impala and if there is a certain model year, transmission, or engine to look for or avoid. I have noticed that some of these vehicles are being sold as fleet vehicles, so I would also like to know if there is a way to determine how long they've been idled for (do they have an hour meter like some other fleet vehicles)?

I apologize if my questions have been asked before, and please feel free to redirect me to another thread if that is the case.

Thanks in advance.
I have a 2008 9C3 and have had very few issues. I purchased mine at 69,000 miles and now have 107,000 miles. So far, I've had to repair the following:
1. Replaced 2 of the HVAC actuators behind the glove box (not too difficult to do).
2. Had the diodes replaced in the alternator.
3. Replaced the coolant crossover pipe gaskets with the new design. (GM paid for this since it was a TSB).
4. Replaced the left front and left rear door window regulators (Relatively easy to do).
5. Replaced the rear valve cover gasket (actually it's the right side of the engine, which is the side next to the firewall). Because the coolant crossover pipe also had to be removed, this was a PITA.
6. Replaced the spark plugs at 100,000 miles, but only for preventive maintenance and as recommended in the OM. I was not having any issues with the originals.
I have not found that the parts are as expensive as many other cars. So far, I've not had any transmission issues. For an overall experience with this car and the 3.9L, I can't say it's been that bad...no more than many other cars out there. It gets good fuel mileage and runs great! I use only AC Delco Professional filters and use Pennzoil Ultra Platinum 5w-30 oil. So far, so good!
 

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Gratz on getting a 2013 LTZ.

As others have said, the HVAC actuators definitely go out in these. I'd almost suggest ordering a couple before it happens because the clicking sound will drive you batty.
 
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