The concept for the Chevy Impala was first unveiled in 1956, more than half a decade ago. Two years later, in 1958, its production started. 1961 also saw the release of the first-ever muscle car, the Chevrolet Impala SS!
There have been various generations of vehicles over the decades, loved by hundreds of thousands of people worldwide. With the vehicle’s production finally stopping in 2020, people want to get their hands on this powerful sedan.
Over the years, the performance and reliability of this vehicle have changed greatly. This article will be focusing on all of the best and worst years for Chevy Impala.
Let’s list down all of them before we get into the details.
Best Years for Chevrolet Impala:
Worst Years for Chevy Impala:
Now that I’ve listed down all of the important models of the sedan, the article will now be focusing on discussing all of them in detail, so you can understand better why exactly these years have received their respective positions.
So, without any further ado, let’s get straight into it.
List Of The Best Years For The Chevy Impala: What Years To Buy
Starting with the recommended models of the Chevrolet Impala, these years have had the least number of complaints in the last two decades.
You will notice that the models that have earned their respective spots are also the latest ones. Before the Impala’s discontinuation, the vehicle’s reliability was improved greatly.
#1 Best Year: 2020 Chevy Impala
The 2020 Chevy Impala went out in a blaze of glory. Taking the lead is the last and final model of the Impala, 2020 one.
With zero complaints related to reliability, it is a fantastic option for people looking to buy a vehicle that packs a punch. The vehicle will never feel underpowered, thanks to the V6 engine under the hood.
The driving experience of this sedan is great. Chevrolet has tuned the vehicle perfectly, ensuring that you will always have control over the car. The 2020 Impala also has many safety features which can help on an unfortunate day.
#2 Best Year: 2019 Chevy Impala
Coming in second place is the 2019 Chevy Impala. The V6 engine, under the hood, can output a very impressive 305 HP.
As production was to continue for two years after the discontinuation announcement, the Chevy Impala had little to no changes in 2019.
The cabin of the Impala is great. Thanks to its open interior space, it provides users with an amazing experience. The seats are comfortable enough that long drives will not put too much strain on the body.
The technology in use is the MyLink system. It is simple and easy to use and has a ton of features.
#3 Best Year: 2018 Chevy Impala
2018 was the year of the announcement of the Impala’s discontinuation. It has scored a lower place than its predecessors because there was one flaw in it. The headlights did not provide good visibility at night. Other than that, it is a fantastic option for users.
The 2018 Chevy Impala checks all the right boxes in all regards. It drives like a champ, thanks to its beefy engine. The rear seats are comfortable and spacious.
Even the trunk is large enough for most people. The comfort level is similar to the 2019 and 2020 models. You will not feel the need to stop and rest, even after long driving.
#4 Best Year: 2017 Chevy Impala
Arriving in fourth place is the 2017 Chevy Impala. There are a few choices for this vehicle, which you should make correctly.
First of all, if you are looking to buy this model, you should go for the V6 variant. The 4-cylinder option is pretty weak, which is why this model has earned a lower spot on this list. It is 110 HP weaker!
The interior of this model is just as good as you would expect. It looks and feels modern. The technology is also great. Chevrolet’s MyLink system is easy to use and has many features. The fuel economy is decent too, at around 21 mpg.
#5 Best Year: 2016 Chevy Impala
Taking the fifth spot is the 2016 Chevy Impala. You may have noticed that as we go down this list, the order of models is sequential. This is because there was a year-by-year improvement in reliability.
The 2016 Impala is another fantastic option for consumers on a budget who don’t want to compromise on major features. The 2016 model had similar issues of the smaller engine being too weak compared to its V6 counterpart.
One other drawback of this model is that the touchscreen is delayed when using it. Other than that, it has great performance, decent fuel mileage, and is packed with safety features.
#6 Best Year: 2015 Chevy Impala
The final generation of the Impala was released in 2014. The 2105 model came one year later and brought in a few improvements.
It received praise just like its successors. This model has earned the last spot because its four-cylinder engine was too weak, the touch controls were buggy, and some interior parts were of subpar quality.
Besides all of these, the 2015 Chevy Impala is another great option for people who want to buy something affordable while not compromising on looks and comfort.
The fuel economy of this model averages 25 mpg, which is the highest of all models on this list.
List Of The Worst Years For The Chevy Impala: What Years To Avoid
Coming up next are the models of the Impala that one must avoid at all costs. After extensive research, I have concluded that the released Impala has been the most unreliable these years.
Major issues make them intolerable unless you are looking to spend thousands of dollars on repairs. You will know better once we get into the details.
#1 Worst Year: 2002 Chevy Impala
Out of all of the models of the Chevrolet Impala, the 2002 one is the worst. It was released two decades ago and was plagued with various issues. Owners complained about electrical and engine issues, which made owning the vehicle unbearable.
The infamous Passlock issue was present in this model. It prevented the vehicle from being started. Some owners reported issues related to battery drain too.
Engine issues on this model included coolant leakage and failure of the intake manifold gasket. The vehicle would also shut down while driving, which is pretty serious.
#2 Worst Year: 2004 Chevy Impala
It would be normal for you to expect that the 2004 Chevy Impala would have fixed most of its predecessor’s issues.
Well, that was certainly not the case. Although there were fewer complaints related to the engine and the transmission, other problems were present.
Common issues in this model included the speedometer acting erratically and the ignition system locking up, mostly due to the Passlock immobilizer system.
There were electrical issues too, such as the battery draining itself while parked. The headlights would also stop working. These inexpensive fixes can add up and cost a lot.
#3 Worst Year: 2001 Chevy Impala
The 2001 Chevy Impala model was better than both previous ones, but not by a long margin.
Owners of the 2001 Impala complained about the engine shutting down while driving. There were electrical issues such as the engine not starting, the Passlock system, or a drained battery.
There were reading issues in the 2001 Chevy Impala too. Owners complained about the fuel gauge not displaying accurate readings and sometimes malfunctioning.
The lights on this model also had issues. The turn signals would stop working, which is dangerous and fine you.
#4 Worst Year: 2000 Chevy Impala
Beating all of them is the 2000 Chevrolet Impala. Although this model had its fair share of issues, this 22-year-old sedan was better than its successors.
Most of its issues were related to the engine, where it would shut down randomly. This is extremely dangerous and can cause a serious accident.
The transmission system on the 2000 Chevy Impala was also not reliable. There were frequent reports of it failing or slipping, rendering the vehicle unusable.
The Passlock system issue was also present in this model. All of them made owning this vehicle a nightmare.
#5 Worst Year: 2003 Chevy Impala
The 2003 Chevrolet Impala was better than the 2002 and the 2004 ones.
Electrical issues, such as the Passlock system turning on without any reason, prevented owners from turning on their vehicles. There were battery drain issues too, even when the vehicle was turned off.
The accessories and features of this model were also unpredictable. Sometimes the dashboard lights would not work at all, the coolant light would come on without any reason, and the cruise control would malfunction completely.
The transmission system would sometimes slip too, which is pretty dangerous.
#6 Worst Year: 2005 Chevy Impala
Finally coming in the sixth and final place is the 2005 Chevy Impala. Although it has issues found in all of the older models, their frequency of occurrence was lesser than the others.
There were reports of the interior accessories not working as intended. The speedometer would act erratically, and the immobilizer light would turn on without any reason.
Transmission issues were found in this model of the Impala too. The vehicle would suffer from rough shifting, or the transmission would fail. There were a few reports of slipping transmission, but they were not too common with this model.
What Are The Most Common Problems With The Chevy Impala?
Although the Chevrolet Impala has proved to be one of the most reliable in recent years, there have been problems over the decades that have plagued users.
This section of the article will focus on all of them. It is recommended to read this section entirely as the information can greatly influence your decision to purchase the sedan.
1. Transmission Failure
Transmission problems are among the most common ones found in the Chevy Impala. The problem is mostly seen in the previous generations of the sedan.
Owners of the vehicle reported hearing loud noises from the transmission system before its failure. That is not all. Some people also reported issues such as the vehicle jerking whenever the transmission shifts.
The problem was seen in 2005 and 2006 models, as well as in 2011 too. These models should be avoided unless you want to spend thousands of dollars to get the vehicle back in usable condition.
As the whole transmission system needs to be rebuilt, you can expect to pay around $3000.
2. Excessive Oil Consumption
High oil consumption is a problem seen in many models of vehicles. This is mainly due to leakage or failing sensors, which cannot report low oil levels in the car.
Well, in the case of the Impala, there were certainly no leaks. It can be concluded that the engine, itself, is burning oil. It must be noted that Impalas do have a higher than average fuel consumption because it houses a V6 engine under the hood.
If your Impala uses a higher amount of oil than it usually does, you should get it checked as soon as possible. The problem could be related to leaking or cracked seals.
If identified, the issue is not that expensive or difficult to fix. But the repair should not be delayed.
3. Failure Of The Passlock Security System
The Passlock security system on the Chevrolet Impala is a great addition. It is an immobilizer system designed to protect the sedan from thieves. The vehicle will only turn on when the key is nearby.
Although the system’s functionality looks simple enough, it is not. Owners reported that the Passlock system would activate at all times, preventing them from using their vehicles.
There are two types of fixes for this problem, temporary and permanent. The temporary fix lets the key remain in the ignition for ten to fifteen minutes. When the security light turns off, you can start your vehicle.
Otherwise, the system needs to be replaced, and you can expect to pay around $500 for a new one.
Related: Why Won’t My Chevy Impala Start?
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. How Many Miles Will A Chevy Impala Last?
The Chevy Impala is a great car and will last you a long time if you take care of it. It can get rough on the road, but with regular maintenance, it should last for many years.
If you are looking for numbers, the Impala can last anywhere from 150000 miles to 200000 miles. That is pretty decent. You can expect it to run flawlessly for many years.
Q2. Why Was The Chevy Impala Discontinued?
What other reason is there other than dwindling vehicle sales? Chevrolet had only one reason to stop the infamous Impala’s production of fewer sales. This was not the only sedan on Chevrolet’s lineup.
Other models getting axed include the Chevy Volt, the Cruze, and some variants of the Cadillac. Plus, people are moving on to more practical SUVs. They have more cargo space, and the Impala just couldn’t keep up.
Q3. Which Car Is Comparable To The Chevy Impala?
The vehicles that come the closest to the Impala are the Dodge Charger and the Ford Taurus. Although both of them are pretty decent vehicles, which are loved by many, the Impala outperforms them in all regards.
From performance to efficiency and even the number of features, the Impala takes the lead easily. Even the Nissan Altima does not stand a chance against this amazing sedan.
Q4. What Is The Top Of The Line Chevy Impala?
The LTZ trim of the Impala is its top-of-the-line variant. Other than the manufacturer classifying it as its top one, the LTZ has many features which cannot be found in the base variants.
You get leather seats, with the front ones heated, keyless entry, and a remote start feature. Simply put, the LTZ is a luxury variant while the others, such as the LT, are mid-range models.
Q5. What Is The Difference Between A 1963 And 1964 Impala?
Although the sedans were pretty much the same, the only difference is the body shape. They have the same chassis, a similar drivetrain, and a different interior.
If you put them side by side, it would be impossible to tell the difference unless shown to a trained eye. So, if you are looking to go old-school and get one of these beasts, you can opt for anyone.
The Chevy Impala is a car known for its high quality and reliability. Although models of this sedan have had issues in this past, Chevrolet improved the Impala before its discontinuation in 2020.
The main focus was to enlighten readers with the best and worst years for Chevy Impala. Well, out of all of them, the 2020 model was the clear winner. It checked all the right boxes and is the perfect option for people looking for a powerful sedan.
I hope this article helped you in deciding if the Impala is worth your consideration or not.
Hi there! I am Tahir Azam, and this is my blog. WVDOT Automotive is a website dedicated to creating high-quality content for car enthusiasts. I am also an avid car driver. I own and drive a Porsche for my daily tasks. It is the perfect vehicle for my family. I am a proud father of two boys. I spend my mornings and evenings catering to clients at my very own software hub. After getting home, I dedicate a few hours of my time to creating an article every day. Well, this is a short introduction about me and I am also a publisher on Amazon. I hope you enjoy reading through my articles, and I also hope that I may have helped you choose an upgrade for your vehicle.