Chevrolet Impala SS Digitally Revived for MY2024 With R35 Nissan GT-R Taillights

2024 Chevrolet Impala SS rendering by The Sketch Monkey 8 photos
Photo: The Sketch Monkey / edited by autoevolution
2004 Chevrolet Impala SS2024 Chevrolet Impala SS rendering by The Sketch Monkey2024 Chevrolet Impala SS rendering by The Sketch Monkey2024 Chevrolet Impala SS rendering by The Sketch Monkey2004 Chevrolet Impala SS2004 Chevrolet Impala SS2004 Chevrolet Impala SS
The Impala nameplate and Super Sport performance trim level go a long way back. General Motors introduced the Impala in 1956 at the Motorama Show in the guise of a Corvette-inspired concept. This moniker would be applied to the Bel Air for model year 1958. Much later on, the biggest automaker of the Big Three in Detroit relegated this designation to a front-wheel-drive sedan.
The culprit is the eighth-generation Impala, based on the W-body platform of the Lumina. Chevrolet and other divisions within General Motors couldn’t ignore the increasing popularity of the transverse front-engine layout, which is cheaper to build and more frugal than the rear-wheel-drive longitudinal front-engine layout.

That era’s Impala peaked with the Super Sport, a storied nameplate introduced in December 1956 on a show car based on the first-generation Corvette. The performance package per se would follow suit in early 1957, also on a Corvette. The Impala received the SS package in 1961, although it originally comprised only visual upgrades.

Previously reserved for V8-powered bruisers, Super Sport meant 3.8-liter supercharged V6 for the 2004 Impala SS. Similarly quick to 60 miles per hour (97 kilometers per hour) as the sleeper-styled Impala SS from the 1990s, the front-wheel-drive successor would also spawn a special edition limited to 4,088 examples.

That special edition is the Impala Indy SS, a four-wheeled commemoration of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Indianapolis 500, and the Golden Bowtie’s many victories at the most popular racing event in the United States of America. Be it a top-of-the-line Impala Indy SS or the base specification, the Impala of that era came with four round taillights à la the Nissan Skyline.

The Sketch Monkey couldn’t ignore this similarity, so he took it one step further by grafting the taillights of the R35 to the rear end of the Impala SS. Pixel artist Marouane Bembli also beefed up the rear bumper, and the original tailpipes were digitally removed in favor of larger ones.

Larger wheels of the dual-spoke variety, low-profile rubber boots, and cleaner bodysides devoid of door handles also need to be mentioned. The finishing touch comes in the form of a slightly redesigned front bumper. All these changes bring the 2004 Impala SS closer to the 21st century, but alas, General Motors will not revive it.

The Impala went out of production a shadow of its former self in 2020 when the final example of the 10th generation rolled off the assembly line at the Hamtramck factory in Detroit. The Super Sport, however, lives on in the likes of the Camaro SS and all-new Blazer EV SS.

Hearsay suggests 2024 as being the final model year of the sixth-generation Camaro, which isn’t expected to receive a replacement. The Blazer EV SS, on the other hand, promises blistering performance despite being a mid-size crossover that weighs considerably more than a Camaro SS. The dual-motor setup cranks out 557 ponies and 648 pound-feet (878 Nm) of torque, enabling the Blazer EV SS to zip to 60 in less than four seconds.

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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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