April 22, 2024


Like the Ford Fusion, the Chevrolet Impala seems to reflect the current American trend to make sedans be big, voluminous vehicles. Both seem to have an extra high front end and relatively horizontal lines over the flanks, resulting in quite big vehicles.

It is not really clear what necessitates these high fron ends. It certainly can not be the new European Pedestrian Impact regulations, since they are not sold in Europe and many companies that do sell in Europe don’t need by far so much volume there. The only other logic then must be that either their power trains are taller than they ever used to be, which defies logic, since we’re always aiming for a low center of gravity, aren’t we? Or that the pack so much stuff underneath that front end that they just needed the volume.

Either way, in having such big volume, it automatically requires quite substantial sculpting of the flanks to overcome this sense of a brick moving down the road. Personally, I think that Ford seems to have done a lesser job at it, with the effect of just dents in the metal running along and broken up by the wheel arches. You can clearly see how the sheet metal was pressed, and not in a sophisticated way.

This Impala tries to be a bit more clever about it, but with a similar treatment as the Toyota Avalon and the Hyundai Equus, with the difference that the Equus has been on the market with that theme since 2011, and is due for an upgrade soon, and the Toyota has by far not as massive volume as this Impala, is more modern and elegant, and offers modern, up to date technology to boot.

The Impala is certainly not bad, if you’re a loyal GM customer, but it certainly is not as new as the competition, and certainly does not have the same quality in execution nor fit and finish, which makes this a car primarily aimed for the loyal American Brand customers in the Mid-West and the South of this country. I would think that is a bit risky to limit yourself to such a small market, but I am sure the decision makers within GM have thought hard about it.


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