2008 Chevrolet Impala Sedan Review | Edmunds.com
 

2008 Chevrolet Impala Sedan

 
 

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Chevrolet Impala Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 5.3 L V 8-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 4-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 303 hp @ 5600 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 16/24 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes
 

Review of the 2008 Chevrolet Impala

  • With powerful and efficient V6 engines, a comfortable cabin and a smooth ride, the 2008 Chevrolet Impala brings a lot to the family sedan table even though its handling dynamics and cabin refinement are still a few steps behind the class leaders.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Powerful and efficient engine choices, available six-passenger capacity, good crash test scores.

  • Cons

    Cushy suspension hurts handling dynamics, subpar cabin materials, average legroom.

  • What's New for 2008

    The Chevrolet Impala carries over largely unchanged for 2008. Satellite radio is now standard on all models, while the lower-level LS and…

 
What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (34 total reviews)

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Love this car

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Chevrolet Impala SS 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A)

I have owned this car for 2 yrs, put 24k on it so far. Love this car, the power, torque steer. Averaging 21.7 mpg on 15 mile ea way commute to work and all my other driving, including some passes on the 1/4 mile. I think this is excellent for a 300 HP full size car. It corners and stops pretty good, though it has quite a bit of understeer when you push it to the limit - overall not bad for a full size car. Also needs to side support in the seats like the Grand Prix GXP has - these seats are too bench like. The drive by wire has some limitations as it will cut the throttle at times when I don't want it to - sharp movements that it thinks the car is out of control. I plan to own 10 yrs+



2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Nascar impala

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Chevrolet Impala SS 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A)

While the few car magazine reviews of this car give it less than stellar reviews, this car is a great cruiser and can be driven as fast as a car needs to be driven! Passing is a blast. While some reviews call the suspension tuning "boat" like, I'd strongly disagree. I believe it handles very flat and also takes road bumps well. Very good mix. I have yet to cause the front end to push taking corners way to fast. The seats do limit your cornering as they have no side bolsters. Since most seat time is cruising, this is an acceptable trade off. Gas mileage is good also....except if you are using it for the V-8...which is why I bought it!



2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Fast speed, faster break downs

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Chevrolet Impala SS 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A)

Bought used with 34000 miles, lots of wheel spin, 21mpg mixed 27 highway. can keep up with newer mustang gt's and eat up 5.7 hemi chargers, BUT 4 fuel injectors replaced, bad onstar unit and a paranoia when driving more than 100 miles at a time. every time I've been on a road trip a fuel injector goes bad. i should have learned my lesson after my 05 cts's water pump and transmission went out at 4 yrs and 33000 miles on the clock. no wonder GM went bankrupt so so so much fun to drive...until it breaks down. dealership would blame a flat tire with a nail in it on "unknown causes with no sure fix"




American pride

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Chevrolet Impala SS 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A)

Bought this 08 SS from a dealer, it was a demo model with 588 miles on it. Got a great deal on it. The car is excellent, fully loaded, extreme amounts of power, smooth, and handles good for a large car. I can easily get 29-30mpg on a smooth flat highway going 70. The car is built well and very solid and surefooted. Great car at a great price.



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Reliably rapid

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Chevrolet Impala SS 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A)

My car was a rental for its first 20k miles. After 1 year and 17k more miles, all I've done is keep the oil changed. The cylinder deactivation gives highway economy of 27mpg with the cruise set on 70. It drops to about 17 in town. A friend with a Bentley Arnage commented on how nice the interior is! All that and outstanding acceleration to boot. The look of despair and surprise on a Honda "tuner" face in the rearview when the light turns green is priceless :) This car is a keeper.




60,000 miles later!!!

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Chevrolet Impala SS 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A)

I have never had so much fun with a car. The SS is a blast to drive and its sad the 09 year was the last one. I just turned 60k miles already and had the rotors cut once, and a bad fuel evaporator canister needed to be changed. I still have the original tires on the car!I only wish the import buyers would have driven an SS before purchasing a car. The Imp has a ton of room and a huge trunk too! I have avged @ 20 mpgs between city and highway driving. Buy a used one today and it is the steal of the century since resale isn't to strong. If Chevy would have really promoted the car it would have survived. Find one and have some fun!!!



 
 
 
Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 16
  • cty
/
  • 24
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Full 2008 Chevrolet Impala Review

What's New for 2008

The Chevrolet Impala carries over largely unchanged for 2008. Satellite radio is now standard on all models, while the lower-level LS and LT models receive a standard six-way power driver seat. Stability control is now standard on 2LT, LTZ and SS trim levels, and the 3.9-liter V6 is now E85 ethanol-gasoline compatible.

Introduction

An impala is a bounding, medium-sized antelope that grazes in large herds throughout Africa's savannas. They are prey to almost every predator. The Chevrolet Impala has been grazing American highways and byways for nearly 50 years now, providing spacious transportation for families and lowrider-lovers alike, while being prey to only the odd meter maid and traffic cop. The only thing these two impalas share beyond a common moniker is that neither is an endangered species. Chevy sold almost 290,000 Impalas in 2006, which made it the seventh-best-selling vehicle in the United States. When it comes to finding a full-size family sedan, it's hard to argue with that many people.

The Chevrolet Impala was heavily revised a couple years ago, with extensive improvements made to interior materials and a classy exterior freshening that included discarding the old electric-stove taillamps that looked more GE than GM. In addition to these cosmetic changes, Chevy also stiffened the front-wheel-drive platform and added more powerful engines. What remained was the Impala's ability to seat six and its suspension that was tuned to appease shoppers looking for a smooth highway cruiser.

In its bread-and-butter guise, the 2008 Chevrolet Impala can be equipped with one of two V6 engines. Both provide a good balance of power and fuel economy, with the more powerful 3.9-liter V6 automatically deactivating a bank of cylinders when coasting and braking to improve mileage by up to 8 percent, according to Chevy. For those with only power on their minds, the Impala SS features a 5.3-liter V8 that combines with numerous other sport-tuned modifications to make it actually fun to drive something no previous front-drive Impala has been able to boast.

Despite the big Chevy's popularity, other models surpass the 2008 Chevrolet Impala in several key areas: The Toyota Avalon is more refined, the Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger are more nimble and stylish and the Hyundai Azera offers a better mix of luxury and value. However, none of those cars shares a name with an antelope, and more importantly, none can boast the overwhelming popularity of the big, comfortable Chevrolet Impala.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2008 Chevrolet Impala full-size sedan comes in four trim levels: LS, LT, LTZ and SS. LS models include 16-inch wheels, a front bench seat, air-conditioning, full power accessories, a tilt steering wheel, a power driver seat, a single-CD audio system with an MP3 jack, and keyless entry. Moving up to the LT model adds dual-zone climate control and remote vehicle start. The LTZ includes 18-inch alloys, performance suspension, heated leather bucket seats, a Bose audio system and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. The SS comes with monochromatic exterior paint, a performance-tuned suspension, 18-inch wheels and a rear spoiler.

Options for the Impala LS consist of a Luxury Edition Package that includes front bucket seats with leather, a flip-and-fold-flat rear seat, steering-wheel-mounted audio controls, OnStar, a rear spoiler and antilock brakes with traction control. Choosing an LT opens the way to two sub packages (called 1LT and 2LT) that include features such as leather seating, a six-CD changer, satellite radio, heated front seats and 17-inch alloy wheels. The LTZ is so well-equipped it has no options apart from a CD changer and a sunroof (which is optional on all trims), while the SS has a handful, including heated seats, a power front-passenger seat, Homelink transmitter and an auto-dimming rearview mirror.

Powertrains and Performance

The Impala LS comes with a 3.5-liter V6 engine that produces 211 horsepower and 214 pound-feet of torque. Available on the LT and standard on the LTZ is a 3.9-liter V6 good for 233 hp and 240 lb-ft. The Impala SS has a 5.3-liter V8 making an impressive 303 hp and 323 lb-ft of torque. All models employ front-wheel drive and a responsive four-speed automatic transmission. Both the 3.9 V6 and 5.3 V8 are fitted with Active Fuel Management technology, which deactivates half the cylinders while cruising to save fuel. The V6 engines offer an agreeable blend of power and fuel-efficiency (up to 28 mpg on the freeway based on new 2008 EPA testing), while the V8 offers serious off-the-line thrust. A Chevy Impala SS we tested did the 0-60-mph drill in just 6.4 seconds and ran through the quarter-mile in 14.5 seconds.

Safety

Antilock brakes and traction control are standard on the LTZ and SS, and optional on other models. Full-length side curtain airbags, OnStar and a tire-pressure monitor are standard on all Impalas, and stability control is now standard on 2LT, LTZ and SS trim levels. In crash tests conducted by the NHTSA, the 2008 Chevrolet Impala earned five stars (out of five) for driver and front-passenger protection in frontal impacts. In side-impact testing, an Impala equipped with the side airbags scored five stars for front passengers and four stars for those seated in the rear. In IIHS frontal offset crash testing, the Impala scored an "Acceptable" rating (second highest out of four), while side-impact tests by that agency resulted in a "Good" rating, the highest possible.

Interior Design and Special Features

The Impala's interior is functional and straightforward, but it has all the visual pizzazz of The Wall Street Journal. GM says the dash is "reminiscent of early Corvettes," which may indicate an erosion of institutional memory. Audio and climate controls are GM's latest stock units, which are intuitive and feel good but don't improve the general anonymous look. The Impala's interior is a huge improvement over its predecessor and a nice enough place to spend time, but competitors score higher style and quality points. Where the Impala does score is in interior capacity, with room for up to six people and all their luggage, thanks to a generous 18.6 cubic feet of trunk space. Occupants will find hip- and shoulder room plentiful, but legroom is mediocre for a car of this size.

Driving Impressions

Apart from the SS model, handling is not among the 2008 Chevy Impala's strengths due to its soft suspension tuning. The car does feel solid and substantial, though, and plenty of people will appreciate the big sedan's compliant ride quality. The SS is also a competent cruiser, but is much more agile thanks to its sport suspension and 18-inch performance tires. Although this is still a big, heavy car, send the SS into a corner and it pulls through with dignity and thrust. While the SS model may be tempting to power-hungry buyers, be forewarned that sampling its formidable reserves quickly brings fuel mileage down to the high teens, with official 2008 EPA ratings of 16 city and 24 highway. We recommend sticking with the better-balanced LTZ and its plenty powerful 3.9-liter V6.

Talk About The 2008 Impala