Print this page


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
70,611 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2003 Chevrolet Impala engine problems

engine problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2003 Chevrolet Impala:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2003 Chevrolet Impala Owner Comments

problem #18

Jul 202011


  • 71,000 miles


2003 Chevy Impala security light randomly comes on while driving vehicle. Light will turn off sometimes after driving or sometimes after car is turned off. Can go at the longest a week between light coming back on again. Car without warning did not start. Turned key lights worked radio worked and ac but wouldn't turn over.

- Summerfield, FL, USA

problem #17

Jul 072011


  • 113,000 miles
Intake gasket blown.

- Moncure, NC, USA

problem #16

Feb 012011


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
2003 Chevrolet Impala. Consumer states vehicle is unreliable, periodically not running the consumer stated when he turned on the ignition, it would not turn over. It didn't make any type of noise, but the headlights and security light would turn on. After letting the vehicle sit for awhile, it would then start.

- Vero Beach, FL, USA

problem #15

Oct 012010

Impala 6-cyl

  • 143,000 miles


Problem started with the trans - wasn't shifting right, hard shift. Took it to rotolo Chevy in fontana, ca. Dx: catalytic converter, nearly $800 to get new one only to have the car completely die on the side of the road when the tranny disintegrated. Replaced under warranty. Ever since I have had shifting difficulties - took it back a week later to be told it has a "smart adapt" in trans and needed approx 1000 miles to sync itself, now the car sputters, has a misfire code in cylinder 2, trans code. Hard starts, randomly stalls when making right turns, interior and exterior lights surge when at an idle, car constantly feels like it wants to stall - it can actually make you nauseas when sitting at a stop light because of the surging of the car. This morning the car just stalled when I was at a stop sign. All plugs, plug wires and coil pack for cylinder 2 have been replaced with no correction to how the car runs. Sounds and feels worse when you put the car into reverse, but smoothes out some when in drive. Filed complaint with bar regarding cat replacement, recommended refund to dealer for unnecessary item - dealer refuses to give money back. Told me car would never run right after the tranny was replaced because I refused to have them change the motor mounts. The car has not run right since, but a second opinion found that the mounts were ok - recommended that one of the back mounts be replaced as it was more worn than the others.

- Alta Loma, CA, USA

problem #14

Sep 252010


  • 104,974 miles
While driving at various speeds, the engine would stall and shut off. The problem started at 90,000 miles. Have brought the car to the Chevy dealer and they have not been able to diagnose the problem. The car is not generating any error codes. I almost got into an accident twice due to shutting off during acceleration. I have noticed that the stalling or shutting off starts after the temperature reaches approximately 125 degrees F and happens randomly. When I am operating the air conditioner, the stalling is more noticeable due to the engine load. So far, the dealer has replaced the crank sensor and ignition module which has not corrected the stalling and shutting down.

- Wilton Manors, FL, USA

problem #13

Sep 032010


  • 125,900 miles
Manifold gasket was leaking on my 2003 Chevrolet Impala.

- Bartlett, TN, USA

problem #12

Aug 102010


  • 40,041 miles


Lower intake manifold gaskets need replaced. I only have 40,000 miles on the car that is a 2003 Impala ls with 3.8 liter engine. Also, coolant hose seal is leaking coolant.

- Lincoln, NE, USA

problem #11

Mar 252010


  • 163,000 miles
My Chevy, Impala caught on fire.

- Wainwright, AL, USA

problem #10

May 102009


  • 61,500 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Chevrolet Impala. While driving at various speeds, the vehicle would stall. The dealer made repairs to the catalytic converter, however following repairs the vehicle experienced the same failure. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where the mass air flow sensor was replaced. The repair did not correct the failure. The vehicle was taken to another dealer and the catalytic convertor was repaired a second time. The dealer also advised replacing the sensor but the contact had recently had the sensor replaced. The vehicle continued to stall. The vehicle was taken to a second independent mechanic where the fuel pump was replaced but still, did not correct the failure. The vehicle was left in the possession of the dealer where repairs were made to the electrical system. The failure mileage was 61,500.

- New York, NY, USA

problem #9

Aug 172009


  • 69,764 miles
I was driving my 2003 Chevy Impala and tried to signal a lane change and the flashers would not work for either direction. There was not any accident, but the situation was very aggravating. The car also has a history of oil seepage and it has only 70,000 miles on it. We bought the car 4 years ago at a used car dealer, and I change the oil myself every 3000 miles. The car is hard staring at times, and I had put a new battery in it 2 years ago due to the trouble starting.

- Geneva, OH, USA

problem #8

Jul 172009


  • 120,000 miles


Took my car to the dealer in collierville, tn. For another widespread problem, that should have been a recall costing $1,000, & was told of another problem with the intake gasket, that will be another $1,000, I see many others have this same problem, but of course GM not calling it a recall. I have a 2003 Chevrolet Impala with approximately 149,000 miles on it. Sunrise Chevrolet in collierville, tn. Has been the prople dealing with me, and states, their computer programmed BCM is not a recall, nor the ignition chip that engages the key, is also not a GM problem but many of their customers. I suffered with my car not starting numerous times, and finally bit the bullet and paid high dollar to the dealership for GM's should be recall. I want someone to listen about everyone's complaint of the intake gasket leaking, and make GM do the right thing!

- Collierville, TN, USA

problem #7

Jun 282008


  • 72,906 miles
About 1 year ago my 2003 Impala heat gauge started acting funny like the car was overheating but then it would go back to normal. It was cool out about that time of year and I also noticed the car had no heat. I replaced the thermostat thinking that was the problem but it did not help and the problem persisted. My husband then noticed that the coolant level was low and added more. That also did not fix the problem, and about a week later we noticed the coolant was low again. We looked for the leak and could not find one. I finally took the car to the dealership and they automatically knew what the problem was and stated it was a problem with the 3400 series engine. We paid nearly $700 to have the car fixed. I have recently noticed that my coolant level again is low but can not detect any of the same problems as before, I still have heat and A/C and the heat gauge is not fluctuating but I have been looking around at recalls some forums about the same type of car and have discovered many others are having the same trouble, but there is no recall for the 3400 series motor as there is for the 3800.

- South Vienna, OH, USA

problem #6

Oct 042006

Impala 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 68,100 miles
My 2003 Impala started with a slow loose of coolant. Every week or so would have to add to the overflow, but never saw a leak. Was over-heating too. Eventually it would have a ticking from the engine area when starting car. It wasn't all the time though. I noticed that there was oil on my driveway and the oil was about a 1/2 quart low. Checked again in couple days and needed to add a quart because light came on. Two days later light came on again. Took it to a Chevy dealership who informed me that the gasket needed replacing in the intake manifold because coolant mixed with oil. Also needed coolant flush, and oil change and another gasket. They told me there was lots of sludge in engine and could cause more problems in the future. The car has 68,000 miles on it and it cost me over $1300 to repair. What a shock to the pocket book.

- Taylor, MI, USA

problem #5

Apr 302006

Impala 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,000 miles
: the contact stated the first week after purchasing the vehicle, the tires starting making noises while driving at 35 mph and the engine light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to local dealer who determined the vehicle was driven out of alignment causing tires to wear down. No repairs were made. The vehicle was taken to another dealer who determine all four tire should be replaced at a cost. The tires were not replaced because the contact did not want to pay for the replacement. The tires were rotated by the contact to remedy the problem. Updated 8/1/2006 -

- Sarasota, FL, USA

problem #4

Apr 262006


  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,000 miles
Heater quit working, then car started overheating. Turning off heater/defroster causes it to stop overheating so much, but temperature still rises when waiting at lights. Car is also needing oil replacement, after having an oil change 2 months and 1500 mi ago. Mileage is around 60,000. There is oil leaking out in various places around the engine.

- Cleveland, OH, USA

problem #3

Oct 092004

Impala 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 1,807 miles
The consumer stated that the trunk latch on 2003 Chevrolet Impala was designed incorrectly. When he put a suit case in the trunk or anything heavy, the latch stuck very high, bent, and eventually the trunk would not shut. The dealer changed the latch once. The foreman and the mechanic at the dealership told him that there was a problem with this model. The warranty was soon to run out. (11/18/05) per invoice, the driveability seemed to idle high.

- Sarasota, FL, USA

problem #2

Sep 072003

Impala 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 13,000 miles
While driving with three passengers in my 2003 Chevrolet Impala ls at 35 mph the engine shut-off without warning with complete loss of power steering and brakes, requiring emergency maneuver to bring car to a stop before hitting oncoming traffic. A replacement vehicle was not made available. While driving to a medical emergency, later that evening, this recurred at 50 mph (engine shut-off without warning, loss of steering and braking power requiring emergency stop in center median 4 lane highway merge site). This happened previously with this vehicle on 7/4/03 at 50 mph with my wife driving on the van wyck expressway. At that time, after 3 days GM regional service manager stated that there was a defective crank-shaft sensor which was replaced. I advised GM that there were other reports to NHTSA about this problem with Chevrolet Impala. I requested that an investigation and possible recall should be initiated and asked for a refund or replacement of my vehicle. This was denied "as there were too few episodes to warrant this action" and my car" was repaired per warranty obligation of General Motors corporation". unfortunately this happened to my vehicle again without warning placing myself and my passengers in danger. This is a potentially life threatening defect requiring immediate action to prevent injury or loss of life. The car is presently again at the dealership. I have contacted GM corporate headquarters about this issue. I have been told that they will fulfill their warranty obligations and attempt to repair my vehicle again.

- Belle Harbor, NY, USA

problem #1

Sep 022003


  • 13,000 miles
When driving 35 mph vehicle stalled. Consumer lost power steering, but manged to pull over. Had notified the dealership, and mechanic had not resolved the problem.

- Far Rockaway, NY, USA

Not what you are looking for?