Test Drive: 2014 Chevrolet Impala LTZ car test drives chevrolet
Test Drive: 2014 Chevrolet Impala LTZ car test drives chevrolet
Test Drive: 2014 Chevrolet Impala LTZ car test drives chevrolet
2014 Chevrolet Impala. Click image to enlarge

Review and Photos by Justin Pritchard

For decades, the Impala has been Chevrolet’s range-topping sedan – and the latest version of this long-enduring, best-selling, great-big-sedan has recently landed on dealer lots.

With a ground-up do-over, the latest generation Impala uses styling, technology, comfort, and a flaunt-worthy new design to bring a healthy dose of American presence to the market currently occupied by other big, semi-luxury models like the Maxima, Avalon, Genesis, and American steel like the Taurus and 300.

The styling sees Impala go from plain and generic to downright modern and magnificent looking. Outside, the top-line tester wore a set of gorgeous 20-inch wheels and was slathered with details, both obvious and intricate, that reward even lengthy inspection. Intersecting character lines, a deep, confident grille and a graceful curve over the rear wheel arches drew the most attention from passersby. This might be the best-looking sedan Chevrolet’s built in ages.

Ditto onboard. The tester’s selection of grey leather, metallic accents, wood trim and just a touch of coloured piping deliver an atmosphere that’s uniquely formal and upscale. There’s detailed stitching, tight panel gaps and premium materials incorporated, which convey a sense of craftsmanship and pride, too. Impala is so classy inside, it’s even got a place to store your umbrella in the door. Every proper gentleman has an umbrella, after all.

Seats are comfy without being excessively plush, and feature heating and cooling. The driver info display is slick and informative, and all of the high-end must-haves like memory seating, push-button start, premium Bose audio and full Bluetooth connectivity are onboard, too.

Plenty of storage lies within the driver’s reach, as do numerous plug-ins for recharging or connecting your multimedia devices. Those, as well as navigation and other functions are accessed by a large, bright and easy-to-read touchscreen display that slides upwards at the touch of a button to reveal more hidden storage space for your wallet, phone or snacks. Functionally, this slide-up, hidden storage space is probably the most delightful part of the Impala’s cabin.

Need more room for your stuff? The monster trunk has you covered.

The space, comfort and upscale atmosphere within the Impala lay the foundation for comfortable, long-distance cruising, as do the full suite of automatic features – including lights and climate control. The steering system, further, even auto-compensates for pull caused by uneven surfaces and side winds. You don’t feel this system working, which is sort of the point.

Test Drive: 2014 Chevrolet Impala LTZ car test drives chevrolet Test Drive: 2014 Chevrolet Impala LTZ car test drives chevrolet Test Drive: 2014 Chevrolet Impala LTZ car test drives chevrolet
2014 Chevrolet Impala. Click image to enlarge

All said; test drivers will find the Impala very well-equipped for sitting back, relaxing, socializing with passengers and enjoying the ride with comfort and confidence.

That confidence is furthered by the inclusion of the latest OnStar system – which puts anyone driving your Impala in touch with real-life assistance at the touch of a button. Whether you’re lost, stuck, out of fuel, in need of a tow truck or otherwise suffering a setback on the road, your personal OnStar advisor is a button-press away. The system works via its own cellular and GPS connections – so it’s right there, even if your cell phone is back home on the counter. As a son and big brother to a mother and sister who live a few hours out of town, your writer can understand the peace-of-mind factor key to the appeal of the OnStar system. Interestingly, OnStar can even transmit the location and condition of the Impala to authorities in the case of a crash impact, even if the driver can’t.

Of course, to keep you out of accidents in the first place, a number of other advanced systems are at play. Impala watches its surroundings continually via cameras and radar, alerting drivers of potential hazards while changing lanes, cruising along or backing up. It can even pre-warn you if you’re about to rear-end someone.




About Justin Pritchard

Justin Pritchard is a full-time auto writer, consultant, broadcaster and AJAC member based in Sudbury. When not writing about the latest new models and industry trends, you'll probably find him fixing his Dodge Viper.