When GM first released details on the 2014 Chevrolet Impala, the automaker said it would be available with three powertrains: the base 2.5-liter Ecotec I-4, the green 2.4-liter eAssist mild hybrid, and GM’s trusty 3.6-liter V-6 – all mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. Our spy photographer recently spied a pair of Impala Eco models with the eAssist system sporting a different front grille from other Impala models we’ve seen.
The car’s grille features a design somewhat resembling a bowtie, which frames the Chevy logo named after that same piece of formal wear. Inserts in the bowtie shape appear similar to those of the Volt range-extended EV, and could be grille shutters that close to increase aerodynamics when additional cooling isn’t needed.
The 2.4-liter eAssist engine is rated at 182 hp and 172 lb-ft of torque, slightly less than the base 2.5-liter I-4’s 195 hp and 187 lb-ft of torque rating, though it’s expected to surpass the base engine’s fuel economy. Official EPA ratings haven’t been released, but GM expects the Impala Eco to achieve 35 mpg highway. The Buick LaCrosse eAssist, the Impala’s platform-mate, is rated at 25/36 mpg city/highway.