2003 Chevrolet Impala LS 3.8 Series II V6 from North America
Reliable, fast (with 3.8L), great on gas, EXCELLENT vehicle all around
Brakes needed replacing at 70,000kms. Was causing the car to shutter on highway speeds. When I say brakes, I mean a complete break job - 4 new rotors, and 8 new brake pads.
Nothing else went wrong. This is a very, very reliable well-built car.
I had this car for about 1.5 years. TERRIFIC car. I absolutely loved driving it. You will not go wrong owning one of these.
Oil changes are easy - I do most of the maintenance myself.
Engine cradle is aluminum, so no need to worry about it rusting out on you.
Rides like a Cadillac. Lots of room inside. Lots of headroom for the people upfront, and lots of legroom in the back for passengers and/or kids.
Stock sound system - freakin' unreal. Great bass and treble. It is so good. Rivals my father's Bose sound system in his GMC truck. Remember, this is stock - all from 4 speakers. Not sure what GM did, but they did it right. If you like cranking the music, you'll love this system.
The brakes went out at 70,000kms - I believe they were the original brakes too. One of the rotors warped (probably due to the fact that my winter tires were not balanced properly). An unbalanced tires will warp a rotor for sure. So I replaced all four brakes for $200 - did the job myself. This car is cheap on parts - as most GM vehicles are.
Traction control, on the LS model I had, was "almost" like 4 wheel drive, when you mate it with winter tires.
Car is VERY cheap on insurance. I was paying $75 a month. The Impala has a 5 star crash test rating - insurance companies like that. Very safe vehicle for a family.
With the 3.8 V6 (one of GM's best engines other than the 350sbc) it has tons of power. Surprisingly, it is very good on gas. I put a K&N filter in for engine care/longevity mostly, but it may have helped with gas mileage. I was spending about $25-$30 bucks a week on gas. From what I hear, the 3.4L version is even better.
So much room, the trunk is huge. I'm a goalie, and carry around a lot of hockey equipment, and it fits in there quite well, however...
...the only gripe I have about the car is that with all the room it has, it "compartmentalizes" it too much. Which is the case with all cars I guess. Even though I fits my equipment, it is a pain in the rear end getting it in there. I have to push and shove my bag, pads, and sticks in there - even with the rear seats folded down. If it was a wagon, I'd still be driving it. I have an HHR now.
...but lots of room to make trips to IKEA and buy furniture packed in the long 4-5ft boxes :) Fits in the trunk (with the rear seats down) with ease.
All around, excellent well-built strong vehicle that will last you a long time.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 29th November, 2007