2006-2012 Chevrolet Impala

2006 • 2007 • 2008 • 2009 • 2010 • 2011 • 2012


Jon Paulette

Jon Paulette is a veteran automotive writer who has spent a fair portion of his life hanging out at racetracks and talking to amazing people who make extremely loud cars reach ridiculous speeds. Despite all that, he still has enough hearing left to enjoy a stupidly large music collection. A native Virginian, Jon lives in the Charlottesville area, roots for the Nationals and would like a good BBQ sandwich right about now.

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This article is an overview of your vehicle's audio system and its upgrade options. If you're looking for step-by-step instructions on installing a car stereo or speakers in your Impala, we'll include a Crutchfield MasterSheet™ free with your Crutchfield order, or you can purchase one for $9.99.
Chevrolet Impala SS

2006-2012 Chevrolet Impala SS (Crutchfield Research Photo)


You know this car. You've seen it on the road, you've seen it at the mall, and you've seen it in the rental lot at the airport. You may have even seen it in your rear-view mirror, blue lights a-flashing, the last time you got caught driving with, ummmm, "excessive enthusiasm." What we're trying to say is that Chevy sold a ton of these cars over the years.

Considering its stylish looks, roomy interior and decent road manners, we're not a bit surprised. In its basic form, the Impala is a solid family car. If you can find one equipped with the high-performance SS package, you'll have an Impala that's impressively fast and almost totally invisible. No matter what you're starting with, your Impala will be an even better ride once you add a better audio system.

Factory system

Chevy Impala factory radio

The Impala's factory radio (Crutchfield Research Photo)

The 2006-2012 Impala was offered with a choice of two factory stereo systems:

  • The standard system, with an AM/FM/CD/MP3 receiver and six speakers
  • An optional Bose® system, with all of the above, plus two more speakers

Both of these systems offer about what you'd expect from a factory-installed stereo package. If you're reading this, you're probably a person who expects a lot more from a car stereo.

The healthy amount of available in-dash space ensures that you'll have a wide range of aftermarket single-DIN (2" tall) or double-DIN (4" tall) receivers to choose from.

Replacing your factory radio

Chevy Impala radio cavity

With the factory unit removed, there's plenty of space for your new receiver. (Crutchfield Research Photo)

While today's Impala is much smaller than the leviathan machines that wore the nameplate back in the 1970's, it's not exactly a Geo Metro. It's still a good-sized car and there's plenty of room to work when you're installing a new radio.

Removing the Impala's factory system isn't terribly difficult, but it requires some skill and a reasonable amount of patience--especially when prying off the trim piece that surrounds the unit. The combination of the hard plastic trim and the softer plastic dash material can make the job seem easier than it actually is. Don't be fooled. And don't be too hasty. Use a clean panel tool (to prevent dash stains and scratches) and pry the trim off slowly (to avoid breaking the plastic) until the retaining clips release.

Metra GMOS-LAN-01 GM Factory Integration Adapter

The Metra GMOS-LAN-01 adapter is a great solution for many Impalas

Pull out the trim panel, disconnect the wiring harness, and remove the panel. Then, remove the two Phillips screws that hold the climate control unit in place. Feel free to let that unit dangle while you undo the four Phillips screws securing the radio. Pull it out, unhook the harness, and put it aside.

It's important to note that the warning chimes and audible turn signals are built into the factory radio unit. Whether you have the standard system or the Bose system, you'll need to purchase an adapter to retain the warning chimes – even if you don't use OnStar. The adapter will keep the audible safety warnings functioning properly, while also providing a switched 12-volt power source for your new radio. Depending on the adapter, it might even integrate the steering wheel audio controls.

Crutchfield strongly recommends that you use one of these adapters when you replace the factory radio. The specific adapter that's right for your car depends on the car's model year  whether or not it has a Bose system, but you'll definitely need one. We'll give you a deep discount on the adapter's price when you purchase it along with your new stereo.

The Metra GMOS-LAN-01 GM factory integration adapter (above right), for example, retains the factory warning chimes, OnStar® capability, and the Bose amp, if present.

Your new system from Crutchfield also qualifies for discounts on a mounting kit to trim out the new radio and an adapter that connects the Impala's stock antenna to your new radio. You'll also get our free step-by-step installation instructions. 

Tools required: Phillips screwdriver, panel tool

Steering wheel audio controls

It's relatively easy to retain your Impala's steering wheel audio controls when you install a new stereo. When you enter your vehicle information, our database will choose the adapter you need to make your factory steering wheel controls work with your new receiver. We'll discount this adapter, too, when you buy it with a new receiver.

Replacing your factory speakers

Replacing the factory stereo system in your 2006-2012 Impala is a relatively straightforward process. Replacing the speakers, however, is not. You can do the job yourself, but you'll need a fair amount of time, tools, and patience.

Chevy Impala front door speakers

Replacing the front door speakers can be a bit challenging  (Crutchfield Research Photo)

Front door speakers

The Impala's front door speaker area can accommodate 5-1/4", 6-1/2", or even 6-3/4" speakers, but mounting depth is limited to 2.9" and this is not a simple, "plug and play" job.

Chevy Impala front door speaker

A close-up of a front door speaker (Crutchfield Research Photo)

First, the door panel must be removed to access the speakers. This process starts by removing the sail panel and continues through several more steps involving hidden star screws camouflaged (rather cleverly, we must say) by plastic trim pieces. You'll need Torx T30 and T15 bits to remove the screws. Take your time and be careful not to damage the plastic trim during the removal process.

Once you've removed the factory speakers, you'll need mounting brackets to fit the new speakers to the openings (these brackets are included free with your Crutchfield speaker purchase). mount the adapter bracket, and secure the speakers. The factory speaker grilles on the door panel will fit perfectly over your new speakers.

Unfortunately, there isn't a wiring harness available for the speakers, so you’ll have to cut the factory speaker wire and splice in. Our free step-by-step installation guide contains detailed wiring instructions that will make the job easier.

Tools needed: Panel tool, small flat blade, Torx T30 and T15 star bits, 7mm ratchet and extension, wire cutters

Front tweeters
Chevy Impala tweeter location

The tweeters are located at the base of the Impala's "A" pillar. They're hard to reach and harder to replace. (Crutchfield Research Photo)

 The factory tweeters are located in the windshield "A" pillars. This is an admirably slick bit of design, but the GM styling studio clearly wasn't thinking about potential aftermarket upgrades when they came up with this idea. The size and location of the tweeters (the pillar space is a mere 0.8 inches deep) makes it very hard to replace them, much less upgrade them. Tweeter depth is the real issue here, so your shopping choices are somewhat limited.

The wiring harness is located deep in the dash, so you'll need to cut off the factory connectors and splice the vehicle's speaker wires to your new speaker wires. You'll also need to fabricate a mounting bracket. In all honesty, this might be a job for a car stereo installation professional. To avoid all that hassle and expense, we suggest mounting aftermarket tweeters on the Impala's door panels. 

If you're interested in learning more, check out our informative article on tweeter placement.

Tools needed: Phillips screwdriver, panel tool, small flat blade, 7mm ratchet and extension, wire cutters. 

Rear deck speakers
Chevy Impala rear deck speakers

The Impala's rear deck speakers. (Crutchfield Research Photo)

Replacing the rear deck speakers is a relatively uncomplicated process – once you get to them. The toughest part or the job is removing the rear seat (top and bottom), the interior sail panels and the deck panel in order to access the speaker location. This is a very labor-intensive process. If you're going to do it yourself, we recommend that you clear out a full afternoon and some empty garage space.Your free step-by-step installation guide contains detailed instructions.

Chevy Impala rear deck tweeters

Bose-equipped Impalas feature rear deck tweeters (Crutchfield Research Photo)

A wide variety of 6" x 9", 5-1/4", or 6-1/2" speaker sets will fit the space nicely, plus the factory brackets and grilles work perfectly and a wiring harness is available.

Top mounting height is limited to 0.8 inches, but that still leaves plenty of great speakers to choose from. A speaker adapter bracket is required for the 5-1/4" or 6-1/2" speakers, and it's included free, along with the wiring harness, with your Crutchfield speaker order.

If your car came equipped with a Bose system, you’ll also find a set of tweeters in the factory mounting bracket. There are a few 3-1/2" speakers that will fit in this space, but your options are severely limited by the rather tight 0.33 inches of mounting height.

The factory woofers receive only bass frequencies from the amplifier, so if you replace them, the aftermarket speakers will only reproduce bass.

Tools required: Panel tool, 7mm socket, 1/4" ratchet and extension. If your car has a fixed rear seat, you'll need a 10mm socket. If it has a folding rear seat, you'll need an 18mm socket.

Bass in your Impala

If you're planning to add maximum bass to your Impala, there's plenty of room for a subwoofer box in the trunk. The available area for sub-box mounting is: Width (side to side) = 36", Height = 17",  Depth (front to rear) = 40" at bottom, 40" at top. There are currently no custom enclosures available for the Impala.

More options for your Impala

There are plenty of other ways to improve your Impala. Here are some of the ways Crutchfield can help.

Alpine Perfect Fit stereo kit

Alpine Perfect Fit receiver kit with an Alpine receiver installed

Entertainment and navigation

If you're looking for a feature-packed unit that combines a full range of entertainment with the convenience of touch screen navigation, the Alpine Perfect Fit package will be a great addition to your Impala. This unit will retain most of your Impala's factory functions and it looks terrific. It also interfaces with the steering wheel controls, so you can pay attention to what's happening on the road ahead.

Rear-view camera

The Impala isn't as big as an SUV, but it's still a good-sized vehicle to wrestle with in a crowded parking lot. If you're looking for a way to improve your vision and safety, we offer rear-view cameras from Kenwood, Alpine, Sony, Pioneer, and more. Some are designed to work with same-brand receivers only, but others come with a composite video connector and will work with almost any video receiver.

Bluetooth and iPod connectivity

If you want to improve your Impala's convenience and connectivity, add an iPod adapter or integrated Bluetooth to the system using kits from Crutchfield. Please enter your vehicle information or call an Advisor at 1-888-955-6000 to find the kit that’s best for you.


Installing a security system in your Impala isn't easy (security systems rarely are), but it's definitely a good idea. Our Crutchfield Advisors can help figure out what you need to get the job done, but we usually recommend taking your car and new gear to a professional installer.

  • Trevor Smith from Idaho

    Posted on 5/30/2015 5:39:07 PM

    I added an aftermarket stereo with all the adapters to keep steering wheel controls and the bose amplifier, but my question is that i added aftermarket subs and amp in the trunk and my amp turns on but my subs don't hit like they're supposed to, does the stock bose amp happen to throw off my aftermarket subs?? Please help!!

  • Jon Paulette from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/1/2015 1:34:08 PM

    Without knowing all the specs of your set-up, it sounds like you need a bigger, badder amp to get the thump you're looking for. Check out our guide to matching subs and amps for more info. If you do need a new amp, one of our expert advisors can help you choose the right one for your system. Good luck!

  • Matt from East Texas

    Posted on 6/6/2015 10:14:38 PM

    Just looking to install a 10 or 12 inch sub and amp to add a little thump to my factory deck and other speakers. Any suggestion for this on a 2010 Chevy Impala. Not looking to blow the doors off or to impress the vehicles next to me. Just want a good sounding , clean , crisp with a little bass to enjoy myself. Again , any suggestions or thoughts would be greatly appreciated... Thanks Much, Matt

  • Jon Paulette from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/8/2015 9:37:10 AM

    Matt, we sent your question to our sales team for the best answer. They'll be contacting you via email soon. For immediate help, you can contact them via phone or chat.

  • Charlie Brown from United States

    Posted on 7/11/2015 10:23:15 AM

    I am looking for a after market radio with gps navagation and bluetooth and also wanna keep my whee lcontrols and i want a touch sreen double din what products can u recommended

  • William from Conroe

    Posted on 7/29/2015 11:53:15 PM

    Hooking two 12inch speakers to my 2010 impala with the stock radio cant get them to thump bought the adapter and all which 6/9do I tie into or do???

  • Jon Paulette from Crutchfield

    Posted on 7/30/2015 9:52:38 AM

    William, If you bought your gear from Crutchfield, you can call Tech Support for free help troubleshooting your system. If you purchased your equipment elsewhere, you can still get expert Crutchfield Tech Support - 90 days-worth for only $30. Check out our tech support page for details.

  • Matthew from Springfield Ohio

    Posted on 8/14/2015 11:57:32 AM

    I have an 2011 impala with bose i have an amp with two 12s in the trunk. Is there anyway to connect my subs to the factory radio? I dont have $150 to buy a harness for my Sony Xplod receiver just to have the bass I want. Any help would be appreciated.

  • Fred from Olathe

    Posted on 8/16/2015 7:25:11 PM

    2008 impala. Will the gray/black(+) dome light supervision wire be effective for the ground trigger input on Viper car alarm?

  • Jon Paulette from Crutchfield

    Posted on 8/17/2015 9:36:45 AM

    Fred, If you bought your gear from Crutchfield, you can call Tech Support for free help troubleshooting your system. If you purchased your equipment elsewhere, you can still get expert Crutchfield Tech Support - 90 days-worth for only $30. Check out our tech support page for details.

  • Jon Paulette from Crutchfield

    Posted on 8/17/2015 10:28:56 AM

    Matthew, I hear you about installing a new receiver. Those premium factory systems don't make it easy. No, you can't connect the subs to the factory system. You need to power them with your amp. You can get audio signal into the amp by tapping into the speaker lines of the factory speakers in the rear deck. If the amp doesn't have speaker-level inputs, you'll need a line-output converter. Good luck!

  • Jon Paulette from Crutchfield

    Posted on 8/28/2015 9:13:22 AM

    Bob, we sent your question to our sales team for the best answer. They'll be contacting you via email soon. For immediate help, you can contact them via phone or chat.

  • Stacey from Pilot mountain

    Posted on 9/14/2015 5:16:52 PM

    I want to get my rear deck off so i can replace them with 6x9 but i can seem to find the bolts i need to undo

  • Jon Paulette from Crutchfield

    Posted on 9/15/2015 9:01:25 AM

    Stacey, The Impala was available with either fixed or fold-down rear seats. There are some differences in the removal processes, but in either case, you'll find bolts at the bottom of the seatback cushion. Hope that helps!

  • cody from sweetwater

    Posted on 9/28/2015 7:48:57 AM

    06 impala with bose factory system. I am adding 2 subs and amp. do I need to hook up my loc before the factory amp or after? and will a PAC AOEM-GM1416 be what I need to accomplish this?

  • Jon Paulette from Crutchfield

    Posted on 9/28/2015 1:21:48 PM

    Cody, I'm forwarding your question to our sales team for the best answer about the LOC. They'll be contacting you via email soon. For immediate help, you can contact them via phone or chat.

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