2016 Chevrolet Impala Review - Buick's Second Fiddle (Video)

The Impala exists in an odd segment of its own. The full-sized Chevy is one of the largest sedans on sale in America, yet its base engine is only a 2.5-liter four cylinder. Based on the pricing and feature options, the Impala is designed to be a semi-step above the Malibu, yet the number of true competitors the Impala has is extremely small. That’s because GM’s philosophy in the large sedan segment is different from the rest. Most of its competitors have two entries in this segment: one mass-market option and one luxury option. GM, however, slices its pie three ways with the Chevy Impala, Buick LaCrosse and Cadillac XTS.

That puts the Impala in the dubious position of the least expensive option in GM’s full-sized portfolio. It also means the Impala’s full-sized competition narrows to just the Taurus and the Charger. Why? Because the real competitor to the Chrysler 300, Hyundai Azera, Kia Cadenza, Acura RLX and most trims of the Toyota Avalon isn’t the Impala, but the Buick LaCrosse. Meanwhile, top-end trims of the RLX, Cadenza, Azera, Chrysler 300 and Lexus ES cross shop with the Cadillac.

Has GM sliced things just a little bit too fine with the Impala? Let’s find out.

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  • Cprescott Lucid has the right idea about building cars - I agree that these have a presence to them and certainly make all Teslas look like cheap golf carts with doors in comparison. I hope Lucid survives because they actually build luxurious products and not pretenders like Tesla.
  • Cprescott Well, the shift in 1977 to the down-sized T-Bird was a great move - it did not diminish the T-Bird as clearly there was more in kind with the 1958 than the 1976. Sales were golden for that clever shift. What really did damage was that "thing" that was the Fairmont based one - that was hideous. I was surprised that the Futura wasn't really a T-Bird - a bit of work on the front and rear made it a clear kinship to the prior generation one and the Futura sold very well. I loved the Lincoln Mark V and all of its air craft carrier bulk - the next generation was okay and I owned a 1985 Town Car and loved that car (30 mpgs on the highway and able to drive one's livingroom with you!). Wish I still had it.The Mark VII was an incredible effort IMHO.
  • Arthur Dailey Ford by messing around with its market positioning and adding different models destroyed any prestige/panache associated with the Cougar which was originally regarded as 'a gentleman's muscle car/coupe'. As for the T-Bird, I had considerable driving time with a 'big Bird', and subsequently had a 'Torino Bird' which was a very good looking car for the time but mine was plagued with mechanical issues. The following generation known as the 'box Bird' was a disaster, both in looks and style and moved the 'Bird downmarket. I never drove the next generation 'aero Bird' but did later have a very rare FILA edition of the 'super Bird' generation. For the time it was a very competitive vehicle. Just wish that I had more driving/riding time in an LSC. For my money the last 'great' Lincoln coupe.
  • Ehaase Chinese Ford Escort because I wish entry level cars under $20,000 were still available.
  • Ajla Yaris hybrid