Trailering Package Affects Mileage? Looking to Lower - Chevy Impala SS Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-14-2003, 12:43 PM
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Hi Folks,
General question here in my quest to turn my plain-vanilla (but minty) DCM Caprice into something a bit more sporty yet economical, as she's my daily (80 miles/day) driver.

The car has the factory trailering package and seems to have a fairly tall stance. I just put in Tokico shocks, and the ride went from mushy with no road feel to where I now feel every candy wrapper and discarded lottery ticket I drive over. I spend a lot of time on 495 in Mass., the part that started out being smooth concrete 40 years ago, but now is just a series of speedbumps. The ride is fatiguing to say the least. I have a K2500 Suburban so I'll never need to tow with the Caprice.

I'm wondering what the effect of going to the Impala springs would be on mileage and ride/handling.

I keep reading of you SS'ers getting 22, 24, even 26 MPG, and this with a lot more rubber on the road than my stocker Caprice wheels and tires. I'm lucky to break 20. I can't help but think that if my car were a bit lower to the ground I might pick up a couple more miles to the gallon.

Checked out Summit, and they have Heavy Duty Moog springs (5419 rear and 5030 front) and total cost would be less than $200 for all 4 corners. Would these springs lower my car at all, or at least enough to affect mileage? How would ride and handling change? If I picked up 2 MPG, they would pay for themselves in just over a year.

What other options should I look at? I've heard mixed reviews about Eibach springs, and in any case, I don't think I can go with a real "lowering spring" as the Tokico shocks I just put on are for regular height (non-lowered) springs. I'm not sure if they're even compatible with Impala springs, come to think of it. They're the HE3651 the HE3667.

Just so you know, I recently de-skanked my intake, put in two new O2 sensors (thanks, Dal), I run the tires at around 37 PSI, and I try to keep my foot out of it. It does have the broken bolt mod on the passenger side rear stud, but it doesn't seem to be leaking. I get 19 MPG tank after tank.

Any and all help or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.


"Looking for the 30 MPG Supercar"
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-14-2003, 01:19 PM
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495 sucks huh. Impala SS springs ride decently...not too agressive. What tires are you running though, thats where the biggest change in ride comfort comes from (in my experience). There's a LOT of b-body's around here setup a lot of different ways, so if you ask around you're sure to be able to ride in a few to feel out what you'd like to do with your suspension.
post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-14-2003, 04:42 PM
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Originally posted by Hodge:
"Looking for the 30 MPG Supercar"
Have you checked out the Z06? 28-30mpg at 70-75mph.

As far as an isolating ride is concerned, I pretty much just put up with large bumps (or if I'm feeling saucy, slalom around them, traffic permitting) because the car feels better when the pavement isn't so crappy (like when you exit the state of Mass).
post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-14-2003, 09:12 PM
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Tow package = mechanical cooling fan...Get rid of it and youll realize more mileage and horsepower. When I took mine off I saw 2-3 mpg increase!!!
post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-14-2003, 10:08 PM
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Mr. Ed, that's a great idea to lose the fan. I had no idea how much it can affect mileage. Damn, I remember an electric fan setup on ebay just a couple weeks ago that went for pretty small money.

Tires are another story. It still has the Hercules rubber that was on it when purchased last November. I'm kinda waiting for them to wear out (and kinda helping 'em along, too, nudge nudge) just because there are so many things to spend money on. I'll be looking for tire suggestions in about 8 months at this rate.

OR, I could just pony up the 50 or 60 large and get that Z06! Now that's my way of improving mileage! A good friend has a ZR-1 and I'd love to have a car that had a fighting chance against it.

Thanks for the help all,

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