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2006 Chevrolet Impala

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  • pluto5pluto5 Posts: 618
    This is clearly a generalization:
    many problems that plagued the 00-05 models. cracked, body mounts, intake manifold leaks, warped rotors, Intermediate steering shaft problems, cheap interiors, etc etc
    inasmuch as my 03 Imp hasn't had any of these problems (I don't consider the interior a problem as it is well assembled, doesn't rattle, and doesn't distract me while I'm driving.)
    The early model years probably had most of these problems but not likely in 03-05. Likewise I would wait at least a year to buy a new Imp.
  • nosirrahgnosirrahg Little Rock, ARPosts: 872
    Probably good advice for any automaker, not just GM. Granted I might not sweat a 1st year Honda or Toyota as much, but even they have their problems (my wife's 2003 Accord has brake clunking to rival my 2000 Impala ISS noise, but all we're told is "they all do that"...at least Chevy fixed my ISS!!).
  • Granted the Impala has many new features and a new interior and engines but is it really "all new"? I'm ordering one in February and I haven't heard many complaints about first year problems. My next choice was a new Malibu but the price differential between a Malibu LT and an Impala LT2 is very little and the interior in the Impala is far more attractive.
  • nosirrahgnosirrahg Little Rock, ARPosts: 872
    New engines, new interior, new exterior...that doesn't leave much to carryover from the previous model! :-)

    One of the reasons I bought they 2000 Impala was for the "bullet-proof" 3800 engine...which due to the plastic intake manifold ended up being one of the biggest problems encountered with the car. I don't know much about the current line of engines available, but if they've been used in other GM products I'd suggest checking those threads to see if any consistent problems have arisen.

    Despite that I'm very happy with my 2000 Impala, and I'd have no qualms in a couple of years when I'm ready to replace it with buying one of the new versions. It was the best combination of size, power, fuel economy, safety and value 6 years ago, and it's looking that way again!
  • deminindeminin Posts: 214
    We're approaching 3K miles on our '06 LTZ (3.9), and getting fairly good gas mileage. A few days ago, I gassed up and hit the Interstate with light traffic conditions. People were running about 80, so I just stayed up with them. We pulled off after about 150 miles, and I gassed up again. Average speed for this run was 78.6 MPH, and I got 26.2 MPG. A couple of weeks ago, we ran a couple of hundred miles on state highways at 55 to 60, and I averaged 28.1 MPG. We don't have these "designer" fuels here, and I have been using the midrange 89 Octane fuel. This is one of the best cars I have owned in the past several years. After 3 months, I have found zero problems.
  • nosirrahgnosirrahg Little Rock, ARPosts: 872
    Two things that I recall being stressed when the 2000 Impala came out were 1) how the car was designed with police/taxi service in mind, and 2) how the structural piece around the door openings was comprised of ONE piece (no welds or seams anywhere within the openings which would weaken in a crash).

    I admittedly haven't followed the introduction of the 2006 Impala as closely, but does anyone know if either/both of these details of the 2000-2005 model are applicable to the new version? Even if not promoted as such, it would be nice to know if the same (or better) level of structural integrity was built into the new car.
  • charts2charts2 Posts: 618
    A lot more steel support brackets have been used in strengthening the chassis of the new Impala. Larger steel support rails in the engine compartment and engine and transmission supports strengthened. Chevy now using quiet steel for many components (like Ford trucks) to cut down on interior noise. I believe they are using much stronger steel supports that are boxed railed rather then weak open ended supports from previous. If you look at the wheel wells of the 06 Impalas they are enclosed much better then the 00-05 models. The side window glass is thicker to enhance quietness to the interior. The DIC now has an option that gives pressures for each tire, rather then previous just letting you know that one of your tires is down 20% or more. Better quality interior plastics and cloth and leather appointments. A lot of improvements that you can see and a lot you can't. With many of these improvements the car is more then 120 pounds heavier then previous Impalas.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,534
    I thought the 3800 had the intake design fixed in 1999. The 2000s didn't have the breakdown of EGR tube and leaks from throttle body into or out of the manifold. What kind of problem did you have?
  • I too had the 3800 engine -on '90, 94, AND 97 LeSabres -always trouble free. The 2000 Impala was a great car -glad you are happy with it. I'll take my chances with the new one -luckily I'm not commuting anymore so it will not be run to the ground. I expect to have it at least 5 years.
  • Those of you who might be considering Glacier Blue should actually look at the real car, not the photo in the catalog. The catalog photo looks like silver with a blue tint but it is a lot bluer in real life. The Silverstone I think looks nicer. It is sort of like the Cadillac Cashmere but with a silver instead of tan tint -I saw both colors side by side and was suprised at the Glacier Blue. I've switched to Silverstone.
  • deminindeminin Posts: 214
    It's all in the eye of the beholder. We've got a Glacier Blue LTZ, and it changes colors depending upon the lighting. In bright sunlight, it shows more of a bluish hue, but on cloudy days, or under lights, it is more of a silver/grey. One thing I am glad of is it doesn't show dust or road film too much. We live out in the country, on a gravel road, so darker colors get to looking bad real fast. This GB looks pretty good even when quite dusty.
  • nosirrahgnosirrahg Little Rock, ARPosts: 872
    There was ultimately a recall on many of the early Impalas because of a coolant leak related to the upped intake manifold (if memory serves correctly). I noticed the smell of warm coolant and had the repair done (at @ $800), and then later a recall was issued and I got reimbursed for the repair. My understanding is the intake used to be metal, but somewhere along the line they switched to a plastic/synthetic part, which tended to warp or something, which led to the leak.
  • nosirrahgnosirrahg Little Rock, ARPosts: 872
    Another feature which was a big topic of discussion on the 2000-2005 Impala board back in the day was the aluminum engine cradle; does anyone know if the 2006 model retains this, or did they go back to a more traditional setup? I've had no problems with mine, so it wouldn't really impact my decision one way or the other, just curious to see if they stuck with this or not.
  • evandroevandro Posts: 1,108
    I had the intake manifold leak (luckily) outside the engine in my Bonneville '02, with about 20000mls. It was replaced under warranty and then I took it back again for a recall to replace the manifold nuts, IIRC.
  • deminindeminin Posts: 214
    That advice has some merit...on any new model, from any car company. However, there are 2 schools of thought on that subject.
    1. They build a car that tests good, and looks good on paper, then spend the next 5 years trying to work out the bugs.
    2. They build a quality car with very few troubles the first year, then spend the next 5 years trying to build it cheaper, and start cutting corners on quality.
    Personally, I have had better luck buying cars that are newly designed. The manufacturer is taking a gamble that the new styling, etc., will capture more sales. They have to go to extra measures to make sure that the new model does not get an early reputation as being a lemon. So far, our '06 LTZ is following that pattern...over 3 months, and ZERO defects. I ran into a guy at the casino parking garage a few days ago with an '06 LT, and he said the same thing about his....no problems.
  • fredvhfredvh Posts: 853
    What year Impala needed this manifold repair? What engine does it have?
  • I've had my 06' SS for a little over a month now with about 900 miles. I've not only had ZERO defects, but I am still amazed at how quiet this car is, there aren't any rattles, squeaks, or vibrations to speak of! :shades:

    BTW - the Laser Blue is a nice color too!

    John
  • charts2charts2 Posts: 618
    The intake manifold problem involved the 2000 and 2001 Impala 3800 engine cars and other GM cars... there was a recall on these and at the time mine went in for the retrofit. Which included more secure bolts for the intake and ground up walnut shells for the radiator to keep the coolant from leaking. I know over the past few years many had this problem and were outside of warranty and the costs run near $700- $800. I would be very careful buying a used 2000 and 2001 Impalas...there was a host of problems with these cars and not all went in for repairs. Intake manifold leaks, engine cradle, Itermediate steering shafts, and poorly designed brake rotors to name a few.
    The 2000 and 2001 Impalas made the first 9 months of 2001 had the problem with the aluminum engine cradle. The welds would crack and the car would creak. It was a big problem and several posters here back then had the issue. Several fixes were tried including using shims and rewelding, but finally better aluminum welding and much better joint aluminum materials were used to strengthen the cradle. According the Chevrolet the 2006 Impalas use a much stronger different design engine cradle then the previous 00-05 models.
  • deminindeminin Posts: 214
    When I changed the oil/filter at 1000 miles on our '06, I was a little surprised to see that aluminum sub frame from the firewall forward. I spent some time under the car, checking that out. That's quite a piece of "bridgework" they've welded in. I guess the main reasoning is to have a better crush zone in the event of a frontal crash. It certainly looks strong enough to me. It looks like the factory did a good job on assembly in this area.
  • Just received a letter from Chevy today:

    It's not a "recall" per se, but is being called a "voluntary customer satisfaction program" that affects certain 2006 Impalas equipped with ABS and 17" or 18" wheels (which I believe should be the 3LT, LTZ, and SS). Although the return address was from their "Recall Processing Center".

    Explanation: "A revised brake module calibration is available that can enhance your vehicle's antilock brake performance slightly by reducing minimum stopping distance on dry pavement. The braking performance of your vehicle meets the applicable federal safety standard and all of GM's rigorous internal requirements, but we have identified a performance improvement that we want to make available to you."

    Per the letter, Chevy will reprogram the electronic brake control module at no charge until Dec. 31, 2006. Courtesy transportation may be provided if it's within the new vehicle limited warranty.

    I'm actually glad to hear this for several reasons:

    First, I was disappointed and a little concerned to read/watch Motorweek's review of the brakes: "Braking was disappointing, however. The Impala's four-wheel-discs with optional ABS leisurely stopped in 148 feet from 60. We consider 130 feet a good result." After all, it's the always last few feet that make all the difference when you're trying to avoid a collision, not the first ones. ;)

    Second, Chevy is taking ownership of the problem and offering it proactively. Yes, they may be taking a hit now to limit any future liability, but it's a win-win for everyone.

    Remember, Chevy also made a production change in Aug. to fix the early horrible lumbar support, which is now very good indeed.

    So, say what you want about Chevy, but they seem to be doing some of the right things. Believe me, after reading the recent Ford recalls (including the one that involved weak gas tank supports!!), this is most welcome in comparison -- assuming of course that Chevy is being forthright about the real reason for the reprogramming. :confuse:
  • zjimzjim Posts: 51
    I picked up my '06 3LT yesterday. I obviously liked the car, or I wouldn't have purchased it, . . . but after driving a '99 Z28 for the last almost seven years as my everyday transportation, the Impala's performance is not impressive. That said, I do enjoy driving the car for what it is.

    It's nice to hear that Chevrolet has worked on correcting the cause of this criticism of the car's performance. Braking is, and should be, one of the most important "performance" characteristics. The question I have to ask is, why wasn't this "enhancement" incorporated in the original design? GM has to make sure that critical performance characteristic are optimized before production starts.
  • charts2charts2 Posts: 618
    The brakes on the 2006 Impala have had the brake module recalibrated because when the Police Impala was tested in September it failed the braking test of not stopping 60-0 in less then 150 feet. Chevrolet was allowed under the Police testing rules to make this adjustment for the police impala to be retested. When it was retested it made the regulation under 150 feet but still came last among the Ford CV and Dodge Charger police vehicles
  • evandroevandro Posts: 1,108
    150ft??? That's way too long to stop! The magazine is being generous stating that 130ft is OK, yet the Impala can't make it?

    I'd be curious to see the fading resistance... :confuse:
  • charts2charts2 Posts: 618
    The police Impalas are much heavier cars then civilian cars, and they use the same brakes. I do believe that Chevy should have upgraded the brakes stopping ability on the 2006 Impalas because the civilian cars are over 120 pounds heavier then the previous Impalas and use basically the same braking size/system as before. We all know better brakes could be the difference between stopping safely or an accident. Watch for braking improvements on the Impala for 2007.
  • I've had my '06 Impala 2LT for 2 months now (just over 2000 miles) and I am very impressed. The car is so quiet! No squeaks, rattles, etc. There have been no problems with anything. GM has done a great job on this car. The fit and finish is very good and my few complaints are minor. I ordered the ABS with traction control and it has done very well in the snow we have had here in CT so far this winter (I have the base 3.5 V6 which is very adequate). The brakes feel good but I haven't had to make a panic stop yet. I got black with the grey interior (front buckets) and the car looks very sharp. I have had more people come up to me and comment favorably on the car than than any other car I have ever owned (except my '64 GTO...back in the day!). Mike
  • fredvhfredvh Posts: 853
    Mike,
    What kind of mpg are you getting?
  • I'm getting 23-24 MPG in mostly city driving. I am also using the remote start a lot on these cold mornings and evenings. Don't know how I lived without it before!
  • the remote starter is one of my favorite features. some find it pointless, but i thinks its an easy yet great idea!---i know its been around aftermarket for a long time
  • We have just bought a 2001 impala from a car dealership, with only 35 ooo km on it. We had gotten a very good deal and the car itself is in very good shape, it had been leased before and then bought at an auction by the dealership. I am just wondering what are the most frequent problems that I might experience with Impalas? I know that they are more reisistant than other cars but I am just wondering if it is worth buying a 4000$ warranty for 3 years or so to cover for my car. Is it worth it ?
  • charts2charts2 Posts: 618
    $4000 for a 3 year warranty sounds about $2000 - $2500 too much. I am not a big fan of extended warranties but to each his own, shop around there are definetly cheaper cost extended warranties out there. I have a 2001 LS. One maintenace item that often gets overlooked on these cars is the air filter replacement. Its not easy to do and often mechanics skip this, get that checked. Also the air cabin filter thats located below the exterior windshield on the passenger side. Its usually done after 3 or 4 years. If you have no previous service records with this car, I would get the serpentine belt replaced its 5 years old and cracks over time and miles. The rad is due for a flush, and possibly the transmission fluid. Have the brakes checked. The battery is getting close if it has not already been replaced. You might spend $500 or so, on some of these maintenace procedures but will give you peace of mind in the long run.
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