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2006 Chevrolet Impala

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  • any drivetrain (rwd,fwd or awd) all have attributes and drawbacks...if you think torque steer is a big deal then try oversteer on a wet surface in a rwd platform...the key to driving ANY vehicle is the dirty harry edict: know your limitations (in this case, the car's limits). the biggest advantage with fwd aside from the space utilization factor is the drivetrain: much more power is applied to the road, in a straight line, with fwd than with rwd: the drivetrain never makes a 90 degree turn with fwd (if it's transverse as in impala). you must learn how to drive the car: it takes time and alot of practice especially with learning the shift points on the automatic, both upshifts and downshifts...in fact, learning to get the most out of an auto takes more homework than a standard, imo..assuming you're leaving the tranny in drive and not shifting it manually...i was never a fan of that...too much danger for transmission damge.

    the bottom line, don't be put off by t/steer...i've driven my fwd caddy for ten years and never had an issue with t/steer. it's simply a matter of knowing how much throttle input you can use at what time and where...it takes experience to get the most out of your car.
  • if the dod will work in around town driving or is it just on the highway? if the engine is at oeprating temp and i'm at a stop light, will the dod kick in?
  • You make a lot of good points. Right now I must say I am young and i want to smash the gas a bit. I test drove another one today and i know how much can I can press on the pedal before it gets hay wire.

    If any one has the new impala, any one bothered by that emergency brake? I think its in a bad spot
  • I didn't have to worry about a deal as I am eligible for GM employee pricing. It's true that you might get a better deal by buying one "off the lot" if it has been around for a while but the 06's haven't been around that long. With sales being slow, you can probably get the same deal whether you buy an in-stock unit or order one. Of course, making a sale today rather than 5 or 6 weeks down the road can make a difference too. Depends on your negotiating skills.
  • Side curtain airbags are standard equipment, located in the headliner on each side.
  • and the more you drive the car the greater your appreciation will be for the car's potential. the one single biggest point for handling, imo, are the tires...they can make sucha a difference in the level of adhesion (or lack of).

    the parking brake must be on the floor instead of between the seats. this is done to allow a bench seat. as you get older you will appreciate the advantage of a foot operated over a hand operated parking brake...what cab i say? i'm an old fart.
  • pluto5pluto5 Posts: 618
    There are head curtain airbags but no front seat side airbags such as Honda and Toyota offer. A mistake IMO. Will wait for an 07 to see if they catch up with the competition.
  • One of the new '06 Impalas first caught my eye a few weeks ago when it was parked in the driveway of a hotel where I was attending a seminar. It was a base model (LT) but I was really impressed with the new design. It looked especially sharp in white, sitting under the shade of a tree and after walking around it and peering into the interior I could see right away that Chevy has put some real effort into making this rendition much more appealling than previous models. The next day I picked up a brochure and spent some time evaluating the car's specs and the available packages.

    One thing I wanted to check during the test drive was the torque steer, as I've read in several places that it's a bit of a problem on the SS with its V8. Well, I'd say under most driving conditions such as on perfectly flat roads and in passing situations on the highway, a driver won't notice it. But on a couple occassions I nailed it on uneven roads and was actually rather shocked the way the steering wheel wanted to jerk to the side. It probably wouldn't be a problem once you get used to it, but you'd never find a typical rear wheel drive car acting that way. In fact, I've never driven a FRONT wheel drive with torque steer this bad, but then I've never driven one with a 303 HP V8. Maybe it wouldn't be an issue on the V6 models.

    Other than that quirk, the rest of the car is a home run for Chevy. Some have criticized the styling as bland, but I don't think it will look dated quickly like what happens to so many other, "trendy" designs. It certainly looks better and more "honest" than the Accord and Camry, its chief competitors. This especially applies to the entire interior design; you instantly feel comfortable in it, as though you could hop in and drive it cross-country without tiring of looking at the instruments. It has a simple, very "soothing" appearance without a lot of busy gadgets, buttons and angular surfaces which typify Japanese cars .

    Acceleration is very good from the V8 and it has a nice rumbly sound you'd expect from a small block Chevy. Torque steer aside, it sure would be hard to pass up this smooth motor in favor of a V6. The tranny shifts nice and firm too. Let's just hope it's up to the task of reliably handling the V8's torque over the long haul.

    The quality, at least on the surface, seems very good...much better than the last time I was paying attention to the Impala (when they had the last V8 rear wheel drive models out in ~'96-'97; I never cared for the styling of the FWD model the '06 model replaces). For the first time, it seems like the build quality is on a par with Honda/ Toyota.

    As I told the salesman, there are a lot of people like me who have been driving Japanese cars for many years and have come to expect unflinching quality/durability in our cars, yet we'd LOVE to buy an American car again if it can be proven they're just as good as, if not better than the foreign competition. If the new Impala once again earns a reputation for durability, and especially if GM continues to offer discounts and buying incentives, I think it will be a much better value than an Accord or Camry which are both smaller cars.

    Yup, one of these just might be in my future...parked in the garage next to my classic 1965 Impala SS. I'll be watching the road tests and reliablity reports.
  • drat19drat19 Posts: 28
    I'm up to about 1400 miles on my '06 Impala LTZ and my overall enjoyment of my new ride continues to increase. However, I have an unexpected interior trim issue; wanted to get y'all's opinion (esp. current '06 owners).

    The other day a typical clown clueless driver in the lane to my right was on his cell phone and started to drift over into my lane. I had to lean on the horn to get his attention so he wouldn't run right into me.

    A couple days later (this past weekend), my wife and I were out and about, I'm driving and she's in the passenger seat, and she asks me about the dent in the middle of my steering wheel. I say, "What??" But, sure enough, the Chevy Bowtie trim piece in the middle of the steering wheel has a big ol' dent in it that I didn't notice (why would I? How often do you look down at the middle of your steering wheel?)

    Evidently when I "panic mashed" my horn that day, I mashed the plastic/metallic center trim piece.

    My plan is to show this to my dealer the first time I'm in for any service (scheduled or warranty...not a special trip for this issue), and explain honestly what I think happened, and see if he'll replace the trim under warranty (if he can...I hope just the trim or the steering wheel cover can be replaced without having to dismantle the whole thing due to the airbag, etc.).

    Thoughts/comments/agreements/disagreements?

    -Dave R. in Biloxi
  • micwebmicweb Posts: 1,617
    Be as nice as you are in the posting, but be persistent in asking it be covered by the warranty. It is either a bad part, or a design defect (shouldn't have a piece in that location that can be damaged by normal use, hitting the horn hard). The only exception I can think of, would be if a security device like a club had messed it up.
  • 307web307web Posts: 1,033
    I have seen many 2006 Impalas on the road lately. Unless they are all rentals, they must be selling a lot.
    I have actually seen more 2006 Impalas on the road in the last week than I've seen Buick LaCrosses in the last 6 months.
  • millspdmillspd Posts: 106
    Hey All,

    I just purchased my Impala a week ago. Sport Red Metallic with the neutral interior. Base LS with no options. I'm very pleased with the car -- I'm a big guy and GM always seems to have the knack to build cars for people like me (6' 4" and 240 lbs.).

    At work we have a 2002 base Impala in our fleet and it's been a very good car for us, which is more impressive when you consider it has many different drivers and its care has been indifferent at best.
  • sjaysjay Posts: 1
    I have an Altima 3.5 SE - V-6 which is a really nice care. Though its' 245 horse produces torque-steer issue. I have 86,000+ miles with no repair issues.
    I am looking at the Impala SS when replacement time comes. 303 horse and DOD
    is interesting. The Impala is plain looking.
    I will also consider another Altima because I am pleased with almost everything
    about it. The Altima SE-R with a little more horse and slightly better handling is
    something to consider!
  • tina5tina5 Posts: 11
    I just ordered a 2006 Chevy Impala LTZ. The dealer said it should take about 6-8 weeks for it to get here. Is that about right ?
  • micwebmicweb Posts: 1,617
    That matches what a dealer told me today about ordering a Cobalt (he said HHR's are taking longer, so it varies according to popularity of the model).
  • vanman1vanman1 Posts: 1,397
    6 weeks is very typical. May come sooner, they usually under promise on these things.
  • vanman1vanman1 Posts: 1,397
    Any of the SS owners using regular and if so, do you notice a difference in power / mileage going from premium to regular??
  • tina5tina5 Posts: 11
    Thanks for your replies. I can't wait for it to arrive. :)
  • I would suspect your dealer will take care of the problem, if for no other reason than goodwill.

    How is your LTZ treating you on mileage? I recently drove an SS for a couple days, 18.7 mpg highway at 70 - 75, 19.6 @ 60 - 65. Too low for my blood. My '03 LeSabre delivers low 20's in town and 30 - 31 mpg on the highway. Looking for similar mileage with next car.
  • vanman1vanman1 Posts: 1,397
    The 3.5L and 3.9L should do better. 3.9L is a tad worse than the 3.8 and the 3.5 a tad better. Depends on how much HP you want.

    I'm surprised you got so little with the V8 on the highway. How did you measure the mileage?
  • If you are considering both the Altima and a car in the price range of the Impala SS, you should really consider the Maxima, too. We've had a 2000 Impala LS for over 4 years now and have been quite happy with the car. We've liked it's size, styling, power, and amenities. It now has 94,000 miles and we plan on keeping it as my work car. However, we recently decided to buy a new car and the first one we looked at was an 06 Impala SS. Unfortunately, the redesign just turned us off and left us cold. So we decided to look at other brands including the Toyota Avalon Limited, Infiniti G35x & M35x, Ford 500, and eventually opted for an 05 Nissan Maxima.
  • deminindeminin Posts: 214
    Re...LTZ Mileage....We live in the country, and do very little city driving....mostly country 2 lanes at 60MPH, and some interstate at 75MPH. So far, our total average mileage at slightly over 1000 miles is 26.7MPG. I am leaving one of the trip monitors alone to monitor average long term mileage, and reset the other each time I gas up. As the engine breaks in, the mileage trend seems to be upward. The last fillup registered 27.4MPG. Once I get 3 or 4 thousand on the engine, I will probably switch over to synthetic oil, and that usually helps a little. I don't expect that this 3.9 engine will get the mileage some of the 3.8's do, as it generates quite a bit more power, and the final drive gearing is fairly low, compared the the drive ratios on the 3.5 engine/tran. I haven't punched this engine yet, but the few times I've "tickled" it to pass a slow vehicle on some of these country roads, it showed that it has more than enough power to keep me happy. The 50 to 80 MPH transition happens very quickly.
  • I have over 2k miles on the car. The best gas mileage I could get was 21.9 on a flat road at 53 MPH (just after the shift point). In town I am lucky to get 18/19 mpg.
    I hate the car, torque steer is horrible, gas mileage is bad and nothing but excuses from the dealer. I would gladly get rid of it.
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,522
    "if the dod will work in around town driving or is it just on the highway? if the engine is at oeprating temp and i'm at a stop light, will the dod kick in? "

    DoD will only engage at higher speeds and under light load conditions. Level road, 60 MPH in cruise control would probably be ideal.

    It will not engage when idling.

    - Ray
    With DoD 5.3L in my GXP . .
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,522
    My experience is with a Grand Prix GXP – but since it has the same engine and trans., perhaps this is relevant:

    Now, the EPA rating for the GXP, as everyone here likely knows, is 18 \ 27.

    If I fill my tank, with a warm engine (as I typically do 1 morning each week) and then immediately jump on the Interstate and head from North East of Atlanta toward Mid-Town at 6:00 AM, the DIC (proven fairly accurate) showed 28.2 AVG MPG when I pulled off I85 after approx. 18 miles. That included a couple of short WOT bursts to merge into traffic. Traffic was typical for that time of morning, and the fast lane was moving at 70 to 75 most of the way. A couple of times, I briefly touched 80. A couple of times I needed to slow to 60 or so. [[ NB: The EPA highway test STILL limits vehicles to a ** maximum ** speed of 60 MPH!! ]] By the time I pulled into the parking lot of my office, including a couple of miles of surface streets, the DIC showed exactly 27. Ambient air temp. was below 70 – so I was quite comfortable running with the sunroof open to ‘vent’ and the A/C compressor off. (A/C can cost 1.0 to 1.5 MPG under most driving conditions.)

    Point here is that I believe one could achieve very close to (or even more than) the reported EPA highway mileage, IF one drove under essentially the same conditions as the EPA assumes for their testing. (IE: A/C off, do not exceed 60 MPH, travel only on relatively level limited access highways with traffic light enough that it does not significantly impact speeds.)

    In the now current ‘real world’, where speed limits are 70 MPH in many areas outside metro districts, traffic often travels at 75 to 80 MPH in such areas, A/C is much more common (than it was when the EPA test parameters were defined) and on and on – I think 25 MPG would likely be an excellent number to average over a full tank – even one that includes primarily such driving.

    My gas mileage ‘problem’ with the GXP is likely 3 pronged:
    [[ Emphasis = MY PROBLEM. Not really the GXP’s problem . . . ]

    Prong 0.5 = I live near and commute into Atlanta. Traffic is terrible. (Not quite LA terrible, but really, really bad almost all the time.)

    Prong 1 = I am soooo tempted to bury the throttle, to feel and to hear that V8 rumble and rush. I do try to restrict that activity. Sometimes, resistance is futile. I really enjoy it – and even with gasoline prices as they are (and have been recently) it is worth an occasional blast.

    Prong 2 = I am afraid that my typical commute just does not allow the DoD feature to engage often enough and \ or long enough to provide much benefit for me. My commute into Mid-Town is typically early enough that I am running 65 to 75 \ 80, but there is enough traffic even before 6:30 that I am rarely running at a steady speed for long. Also, the trip begins and ends at roughly the same elevation, but there is generally up and down all the way – relatively gentle during the Interstate 85 leg, but still not ideal. My trip home in the afternoon is typically too late in the afternoon to be in light to moderate traffic. (sigh) Thus, I am almost certain that I have never been in DoD mode during my afternoon drive home . . . I am either accelerating or decelerating – and I am often in first or second gear from I85 \ I285 (spaghetti junction) to my house. That is 4 to 5 miles. Sometimes the acceleration rate is mild, as all traffic is held back – but that combination of slow \ go \ slow \ stop kills my average.

    Prong 3 = When I do cruise in relatively light traffic, as I did driving to Braselton and back a few weekends ago, I do NOT stay below the maximum speed limit during the EPA highway test (um, still 60 mph!) that resulted in the 27 MPG rating. Cruising up I85 on Saturday morning and back early afternoon (over 20 miles of Interstate each way) I was running at 75 to 80. As was most other traffic. Clearly, the difference between 60 and 75 \ 80 is non-trivial. With regard to fuel mileage.

    If I am ever able to drive on a relatively level freeway outside metro Atlanta traffic for an extended trip, and I decide to maintain a ‘reasonable and prudent speed’ (below 80 MPH) I expect that I can average 25 or so MPG. If I can set the Cruise Control & maintain a steady speed and the roads are relatively level. We’ll see. I don’t expect to have an opportunity until Thanksgiving weekend (planning a run to see friends in the Florida Panhandle) to run for a long distance away from the typical traffic in and around Atlanta.

    My overall average (Excel – not DIC) in over 5,500 miles: 18.76
    Best full tank: 19.78

    Not great, I’d agree. Yet for a vehicle with verified Quarter Mile acceleration in the high 13s (published numbers 14.2 \ 14.3) I’d suggest that these are reasonable mileage numbers – particularly for a 4 door sedan that is this much fun to drive.

    Just my opinion.
    - Ray
    Overall, still quite content . .
  • that was the reason for my earlier question regarding the dod...my driving is mostly around town...stop light to light and the dod not kicking in at lower speeds or idling is a real drawback, imo. while i appreciate that the idle characteristics of the dod feature would be less than ideal (probably ALOT less than ideal) i am hoping that in time, the engineers will be able to reconfigure the software or the cam timing possibly, to allow the use of dod in urban driving conditions...i won't be holding my breath that it will happen but it definitely would help the fuel economy numbers for someone like myself who likes the punch of a v8 but would still like better f/e numbers.
  • for those who have the new 2006 impala with Bose, how is it?

    as many know and understand, Bose can make a pretty nifty factory stereo and a pretty lousy one. My in-law's Avalanche sounds fantastic, but my in laway C5 2004 'vette sounds like crap. my 1996 maxima sounds awsome, the new 2005 maxima with BOSE sounds less the steller...

    my point being, is this a good BOSE stereo, or a stereo with a BOSE name plate.

    thanks for any info--also how does the ipod sound as far as the imput goes? is it clear? or fuzzy?
  • 2006 Impala LS owner. Base radio/cd Stereo sounds great to me. Low gain though (max volume is reached without any noticable distortion). It could be louder but I don't play my music full blast. The ipod plugs right in, no fuzzy hiss or static. I'm happy with it.

    The real story with this car is the MPG. With about 800 miles on the Odometer. After a 50 mile highway trip at mostly 65 - 70 mph the DIC said avg. 35.0 mpg. I think the wind was at my back, but still that's awesome for a car this size. At 70 mph the tach is only at about 1800 rpm. The tall gearing and the aero is the key. This car is growing on me. :)
  • A friend of mine at work just bought an '06 LTZ this week. It's black with beige leather interior.

    I have to admit that I thought the new Impala was a sharp looking car when I saw it in the car magazines and on here. It wasn't until I drove her's that I realized just how impressive this car is. Having never owned an American car and not being much of a fan of them, I'm blown away by the power, ride and overall comfort of it. The interior is light years ahead of anything GM has ever done.

    I don't need anything nearly as large as the Impala, but if I did it'd be at the top of my list. Maybe the good looks will trickle down to the Malibu and Cobalt.
  • jntjnt Posts: 316
    Some clarifications about Bose audio system:

    1. Bose only makes Audio Amplifiers and speakers. They do not make auto radio head units that I am aware of. So when you see "Bose" label on the radio, it means there is a Bose Amplifier in the trunk at least. Just like the "Intel" inside logo

    2. There are cheap Bose that cranks out moderate amount of power. There are also expensive Bose amp that can blow your ears off. So, not all Bose boxes are the same (as you observed). It is all function of price

    3. Bose supplies their amplifiers to different car makers. So like anything else, it is the whole vehicle effect. If the car maker is good, they beat the heck of of everyone to make the good sounding system. If they are lousy, you get the lousy system with or without Bose in it. Having Bose on board is not always the sure thing.

    jt
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