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TCC: Chevrolet Exec Confirms Next-Gen Impala

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2008-chevrolet-impala_100171754_t.gif General Motors' large sedan future was looking rosy until the U.S. government decided to vote in favor of new CAFE rules, forcing automakers to improve the average fuel economy of their fleets to 35.5 mpg by 2016. We were teased with all manner of rear-wheel drive and V-8 powered muscle cars, including sedans, coupes, and even a sports ..

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General Motors’ large sedan future was looking rosy until the U.S. government decided to vote in favor of new CAFE rules, forcing automakers to improve the average fuel economy of their fleets to 35.5 mpg by 2016. We were teased with all manner of rear-wheel drive and V-8 powered muscle cars, including sedans, coupes, and even a sports wagon, but now many of these cars have fallen off the radar.

One of these was a rumored rear-wheel drive Chevrolet Impala due early next decade and based on GM’s Zeta platform.

Chevrolet’s vice president Brent Dewar has now confirmed that a replacement for the current Impala, which has been on the market since 2005, is currently in the works. The new car will slot above the Malibu in Chevrolet’s lineup and there’s a strong possibility that it might be related to the Australian-sourced Caprice police car.

“The announcement for the Caprice is currently only as a police patrol cruiser,” he said. “It will be rear-wheel drive with a 6.0-liter V-8. We have not made any firm plans yet on a retail version of the Caprice. That said, we are working on a next-gen Impala that comes in above the Malibu. More to come,” Dewar teased.

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Brent doesn't say either way whether it will be RWD or FWD. Which in itself could be construed as good news for those of us that think a LWB Epsilon II Impala is silly. Still, I won't hold my breath until I can plant my ass in the driver's seat.

I wonder if he still has that Suburban Hybrid that he had when I interviewed him a couple of years ago.

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I'd have to guess that both a FWD and RWD Impala are sitting on a shelf at this point with one getting the nod soon.

Also, something tells me that we had better hope that the Opel deal goes through.

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I thought this was already confirmed for the so called "super epsilon" platform, and it would come around 2013. Although to me, a LWB Epsilon II Impala makes no sense because they already have the LaCrosse as a LWB Epsilon II car priced slightly above the Malibu. GMC is all overlap, a fwd Impala makes the LaCrosse more overlap. Unless the eventual plan is to consolidate Buick/GMC dealers and then slowly close them down around 2015.

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Still, I won't hold my breath until I can plant my ass in the driver's seat.

Oh wait - I sat in a G8 ST, and we all know how that ended. Never mind.:(

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I'm so very tired of reading that CAFE killed Zeta. I know that's what GM wants us to believe, but we all know that Zeta gets the same, and sometimes better, fuel economy than Epsilon.

What killed Zeta was GMs financial situation and their inability to finance an adequate supplier base. In short, GM took the easy way out yet again.

I'd love to see civilian Zeta sedans at all three divisions. Just don't call the Chevrolet version "Caprice"

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I really don't think I have seen a GM Exec say "CAFE killed zeta" I think it's more of the media speculating on that matter.

Camino is right. No opel = more zeta.

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Good so lets kill Opel. GM China can keep Buick going in the US. Chevrolet can get a bigger hunk of developement money, as can Cadillac, and GMC is just a carbon copy of Chevrolet for the most part. As long as no more Opel means more Zeta, I would be happy. That would give GM both world class FWD and RWD cars not just FWD.

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I really don't think I have seen a GM Exec say "CAFE killed zeta" I think it's more of the media speculating on that matter.

Camino is right. No opel = more zeta.

Actually, I think quite the opposite. Opel is far more integral to EP2 than it is to Zeta. The vibe I get is that in order for one architecture to expand, the other one has to be limited. Depending on how things shake out for Opel in the end, GM will have to shift resources around. If GM ends up stuck with Opel, Zeta could be back in trouble.

To make both happen well may be beyond GM's reach at the moment.

Frankly, I'm not quite sure what to hope for at this point.

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I don't know for sure what is going on but I do hope they give the Impala RWD Zeta based or Alpha would be fine.

I just don't want to see a Malibu Ex Large passed off as a Impala. That is just deluting the gene pool.

All I know is the GM engineer was at a loss for words when asked on the Zeta. He could only say I am not sure what to say since he was not sure what GM's offical stance was on the car. This tells me they are working on things and he was not sure what he could say. If it was dead he and he was not working on it he would know what to say. Al Oppenheiser the lead on the Camaro should know something about Zeta.

A week later the police package shows up.

I wonder how many that said that no Zeta's would happen in August are now explaining the police package and other future based models?

I am to the point just to step back and see what happens as GM is not dictating their moves like they used too so far in advance. Today we will not see or know about thing only months in advance not years.

Edited by hyperv6
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Good so lets kill Opel. GM China can keep Buick going in the US. Chevrolet can get a bigger hunk of developement money, as can Cadillac, and GMC is just a carbon copy of Chevrolet for the most part. As long as no more Opel means more Zeta, I would be happy. That would give GM both world class FWD and RWD cars not just FWD.

But Opel-based platforms will constitute the majority of midsize cars in GM, especially in the mainstream sedan market, where the money is. If Opel isn't there to develop and generate platforms for excellent cars like the new LaCrosse and upcoming Malibu to bring home the bacon, then you can kiss the big, RWD sedan dream goodbye.

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When the RWD Impala was killed, I'm pretty sure Bob Lutz blamed it on CAFE, verbatim.

That he did... over exactly 1mpg as I recall.

The thing is, people have actually seen that car, and report it to be a "stunner".

That's why I say that both options are simply waiting there on a shelf until GM is ready to move.

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That he did... over exactly 1mpg as I recall.

The thing is, people have actually seen that car, and report it to be a "stunner".

That's why I say that both options are simply waiting there on a shelf until GM is ready to move.

+1

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That he did... over exactly 1mpg as I recall.

The thing is, people have actually seen that car, and report it to be a "stunner".

That's why I say that both options are simply waiting there on a shelf until GM is ready to move.

I wonder how much the new Taurus will effect what GM does.

Will this make them go FWD or give them the idea to give RWD a chance?

Taurus sales are claim to be good even at a high price, V6 and FWD.

The bigger question is how well would this market segment support a RWD car anymore. We know there are buyers but how many sales would be lost to the brain washed masses of Camry buyers.

The Impala is not just an enthusiast car so where do you go? Who and what group will buy the most cars?

As for styling I do not think that will be an issue. Lutz and GM have not had an issue with that of late on most of their vehicles.

Edited by hyperv6
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If built, the RWD Impala would not be a direct replacement for the current FWD version.

A different business case would be required.

The old plan was to upsize the Malibu a bit and add the RWD Impala above it.

Who knows what they plan at this point.

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But Opel-based platforms will constitute the majority of midsize cars in GM, especially in the mainstream sedan market, where the money is. If Opel isn't there to develop and generate platforms for excellent cars like the new LaCrosse and upcoming Malibu to bring home the bacon, then you can kiss the big, RWD sedan dream goodbye.

GM-DAT....

They can develop the cars for cheaper anyway.

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I still say the best plan is to offer all 3.

Malibu for the volume to compete with Camry and Altime.

Impala for the buyers that are willing to pony up a bit more change for a bit more room. (THINK: new Taurus and Avalon)

And the limited production (imported) Chevelle/Caprice for the enthusiasts and fleets. GM wouldn't even have to give it much of a marketing budget.

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I thought this was already confirmed for the so called "super epsilon" platform, and it would come around 2013. Although to me, a LWB Epsilon II Impala makes no sense because they already have the LaCrosse as a LWB Epsilon II car priced slightly above the Malibu. GMC is all overlap, a fwd Impala makes the LaCrosse more overlap. Unless the eventual plan is to consolidate Buick/GMC dealers and then slowly close them down around 2015.

Regal will be offered in premium CXL trim only

I think buick will go this way with all their cars so no overlap between them and chevrolet

impala 27'000-37'000 allure/ lacrosse CXL 38'000- 52'000

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