NEW FOR 2009:

– Standard thorax side-impact airbags and front seat safety belt pretensioners
– Available Bluetooth hands-free connectivity
– New 18-inch flangeless polished aluminum wheels for Impala SS
– Exterior colours: Silver Ice Metallic, Aqua Blue Metallic and Victory Red added

For 2009, the Chevrolet Impala receives minor changes, including standard side airbags and safety belt pretensioners, and the availability of standard or optional Bluetooth connectivity.

The Impala comes with a choice of three engines: a flexible-fuel 3.5-litre V6 in the LS and LT; a flexible-fuel 3.9-litre V6 in the LTZ; and a 5.3-litre V8 with Active Fuel Management for improved fuel economy in the Impala SS. All use a four-speed automatic transmission.

Features on the LS include 16-inch steel wheels, air conditioning, power mirrors, variable intermittent wipers, simulated walnut burl interior accent trim, cargo net, cruise control, floor mats, driver information centre, tilt column, power windows with express driver’s down, cloth seats with six-way power driver’s adjustment, CD stereo, power locks with keyless entry, automatic headlamps, and OnStar.

The LT adds 17-inch alloy wheels, exterior temperature display, compass, leather-wrapped wheel with audio controls, CD/MP3 stereo, and remote starter.

The LTZ adds 18-inch alloy wheels, fog lamps, heated mirrors, deck lid spoiler, auto-dimming rearview mirror, eight-way power driver’s seat, 60/40 split-folding rear seat, Bluetooth hands-free connectivity, sport suspension, electronic stability control, and theft deterrent system.

The SS adds SS-specific grille, "techno steel" interior accents, heated leather seats, six-way power passenger seat, XM satellite radio, and Bose sound system.

One of GM’s better sedans, the Impala offers a comfortable interior, good performance and a reasonable price, with a choice of V8 power without moving up to a larger footprint. The LS and LT models can be optioned with a front bench seat and column shifter for six-passenger seating. It’s popular with the taxi industry for a reason: it’s big, roomy, and does exactly what it’s supposed to do, although buyers may well cross-shop it against the smaller but impressively spacious Malibu.

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