In a rather odd move, General Motors has gone ahead and revealed the police patrol version of the 2012 model year Chevrolet Impala before we get to know the full details on the retail model. The Detroit automaker stated that the 2012 Impala for the public will go on sale this month and will get the additional horsepower and fuel economy of the police derivative.
The highlight of the 2012 Impala redesign in both police and retail forms is the adoption of the GM’s new 3.6-liter V6 engine with direct-injection technology coupled to a six-speed automatic transmission. The six-cylinder unit delivers 302-horsepower and according to GM’s engineering tests, it offers the 2012 Impala a very respectable 0-60mph (96 km/h) sprint time of 6.6 seconds.
Despite the 72-horsepower increase over the 2011 Impala police car, which features a 230HP 3.9L V6 engine matched to a 4-speed transmission, the new powertrain returns an estimated fuel economy of 17 mpg city and 27 mpg highway. GM said that these numbers correspond to a 3 mpg improvement over previous Impala models 28 percent better than the soon-to-be retired Ford Crown Victoria.
Along with the new engine and transmission, the 2012 Impala Police car will be the first of the series to adopt GM’s electronic stability control technology called StabilTrak, while upgrades to the brake system shorten vehicle's 60-0 mph stopping distance to 132 feet. A fine-tuning of the steering and suspension systems promise to reduce body roll and improve handling, while GM has also fitted the police version with Goodyear’s Eagle RS-A all-season tires that have a W speed rating (up to 140 mph or 225 km/h).
"The enhancements to the 2012 Impala's powertrain, steering and suspension produce a new vehicle that has improved performance, handling and safety features for police and general consumers," said Darren Post, vehicle line director for Impala. "And they'll see a savings at the fuel pump."
Expect detailed information and pricing on the retail versions of the 2012 Impala to be released within the next couple of weeks.