Many times your humble scribe has espoused the abundance of GM’s durable W-body in his home location of Central Missouri. It seems it’s also alive and doing well in Central Indiana.
Nice shot of these fraternal twins, Jason. Separated at birth by merely a trim level.
These W-bodies are still quite prevalent here in Maryland as well. I’m a Ford guy, but have owned 2 of them at one point in the 2000’s.
Yup, the W body is still a staple around here. With that Suburban/Tahoe in front of the one on the left, this looks like a normal “day in the life” in my corner of the midwest.
When these were built we still had a sizeable GM presence in the area with a metal stamping plant and Allison transmission here. Add in some of the closed plants in Anderson and Muncie and between current employees and retirees (and their families/survivors) GM sold a lot of cars in this area on the employee discount plan.
GM got it wrong with these cars. Everybody knows that all real Impalas have triple taillights. Maybe Chevy should have used the Biscayne name instead.
I just thought it was cool to see the return to round tail lights, even if there weren’t enough to earn the Impala name.
Just the sight of one of these makes me cringe. I’m a deputy sheriff, and my agency bought a dozen 2003 Impalas with the 9C1 package to field test as potential Crown Victoria replacements. They were horrible. All were relegated to unmarked, non-patrol duty within a year. With a light bar, they would top out at 105 mph; hardly what you need in a pursuit-rated vehicle. They sounded like they were powered by Cuisinart, were tight inside when fitted with a cage partition, and had tons of transaxle problems in such a “severe duty” application.
We eventually went back to Crown Victorias before a 5-ish year stint with the next generation Impala 9C1. Those were a lot better (and a fair degree faster), but had serious problems with cooling fan clutches and had to be retrofitted. The transaxle problems also persisted on these Impalas.
We’ve since moved on to the Taurus-based Interceptors, and things have been much better. I’m not a Ford guy by any stretch of the imagination, but I do have to say they do pretty well with police vehicles.
Reminds me of being on the UK M40 some years – 3 abreast Ford Focus mk 1 hatch in Pacific Green. No photo as I was driving one of them
In the opening sequence of the “WKRP In Cincinnati” TV series there are two, gold VW bugs, side by side, in one freeway shot.
It seems it’s also alive and doing well in Central Indiana.
I have read two or three accounts of people driving coast to coast, and noting the extraordinary abundance of big three products in the midwest. iirc, in the northeast and west coast, all big three models, combined, only hold about a 30% market share.
It’s been an eye opener since moving here. Particularly the working class neighborhoods, in Indiana GM reigns supreme. Heck you would still see “Box” b-bodies in daily driver (and donk) duty, aero Bs were a common sight as well. But there is a strong showing of Ford/Mopar stuff as well: 90s-2000s SUVs of all kinds, cloud cars, Tauri, etc. I moved from such a neighborhood (Little Flower on the East side) to a yuppie neighborhood on the northside (Broad Ripple) and the contrast is fairly stark, as is to be expected I suppose. I think I’m one of the only people in my new neighborhood that you’ll see lifting a hood or set up jack stands on a weekend to do some work or an oil change. I’ve gotten some very curious looks.
Back in late 2004, my wife needed a new car. She wanted a metallic red one with 4 doors. No more specific than that. I went to my local Chevy dealer and he located a base model 2005 Impala in the same red as the two pictured, 3.4L V-6, regular rent-a-car options. The deal was literally too good to pass up with all applicable rebates and a $1000 or so on my GM credit card. Still have the car, it’s been one of the best automotive values I have ever owned.
The first thought that crossed my mind when I looked at that pic was “this has to be somewhere in the midwest. There’s only one import in the photo- a KIA.” The chances of seeing that many domestics on I-205 in Portland would be about the same as winning the lottery. Unless, of course, we counted trucks and SUV’s.
Looks like my neck of the woods (Western Michigan).
I still keep an eye on all the different lists looking for clean, low mileage Impalas. Just in case I or my kids needs wheels in a hurry.
You could do a lot worse.
After a young friend had been nearly put into the poorhouse by a Dodge Avenger, I suggested he look for a Buick or Oldsmobile GM W body with the 3.8 V6 for the reasons we midwesterners all know. Of course he bought a high mile VW turbo Jetta instead. Which proved to be another disaster. Then he bought one of these from his grandfather. Dull is a good thing in his book after his last two cars.
No complaints about the W-bodies from me…other than the fact that as Impalas, they need THREE tail lights per side.
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