Up: Android Auto

Down: Lack of creature comforts

Neutral: Large and in charge

St. Patrick’s Day weekend. I was driving along and minding my own business when a minivan decided to side swipe my car and then drive away. Awesome. While my Volkswagen GTI is now at the body shop, I was given a 2018 Chevrolet Impala LT for a rental. My loss is your gain because, for your reading pleasure, here is a review of the vehicle.

For those who don’t know, the Impala is basically the big brother to the Chevy Malibu. Boasting more power and a more spacious interior, the Impala is your go-to car if you value speed, comfort, and size over fuel economy. The 2018 Impala starts at $27,895 but can quickly become significantly more expensive if you want the V6 engine or some of GM’s higher trim features such as leather seats or rear park assist. The Impala I had priced out on Chevy’s website ended up with a MSRP of $37,290; granted I added bigger aluminum wheels, tincoat paint job, and the V6 engine.

The Chevy tagline for the 2018 Impala LT is “spacious and sophisticated”, which seems rather appropriate. The Impala is certainly spacious and just feels big. Coming from my tiny daily driver, it was a bit of a shock. The large size does allow for a very spacious interior with plenty of leg and head room and a very open feel.

2018 Chevrolet Impala LT - Short Shift-3

The 2018 Chevy Impala LT I drove also had the infotainment in the dash, which was intuitive but also annoying. One complaint I had about the interior was the lack of heated seats. I feel like they should come standard in every car now that it’s 2018.

A positive feature on the 2018 Impala LT was the remote start. I simply pressed the button and then had to go look out my home’s window because the car was so quiet. I could not hear any idle noise from inside my house just a few yards away. Impressed? Absolutely.

The exterior of the car is also pretty surprising. The design teams have really stepped it up with the new model, which was refreshing to see in a vehicle like the Impala. The swooping lines and angles of the car are a nice change from a few years ago. There are also many color choices, including a personal favorite of mine, the Chevy Iridescent Pearl Tricoat. Take a look at the pictures yourself; the Impala is looking pretty good.

2018 Chevrolet Impala LT - Short Shift-5

As for the drive, I was impressed. The 2018 Impala LT I drove came with the 3.6 liter V6 engine with 305 horsepower. The steering seemed to lighten up at low speeds, where the wheel felt agile and easy to control. The Impala also was pleasant on the highway, staying comfortably quiet and smooth. The car really eats up the miles, too, making the 12-mile commute to work relaxing. It also gets decent gas mileage, coming in around 30 miles per gallon on the highway. During my possession I saw an indicated 19 mpg on E85 and 26 mpg on unleaded. Not bad for such a big car.

Overall the 2018 Chevrolet Impala LT was an interesting drive. The interior quality of the materials was high and there were excellent features such as the remote start and the infotainment. The car had felt lacking, though. There were no heated seats, a manual adjust passenger seat, no sunroof, and the general feeling of being in such a huge vehicle put a damper on this sedan. No matter how many times I went to park, I always thought I was going to hit the person next to me or not fit in completely between the liens. The engine had plenty of oomph and the interior was comfortably quiet, but the lack of simple amenities really left me wanting.

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