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2007 Chevrolet Monte Carlo Review

The 2007 Chevrolet Monte Carlo is a car that is all about style. It is roomy, comfortable and easy to operate, and it is fast and fun to drive. It was originally introduced at the 2005 Greater Los Angeles Auto Show. The Monte Carlo comes in three trims: LS, LT, and SS. For 2007, The Monte Carlo discontinues the LTZ trim level and 3.9-liter V-6. Although conceived originally for visual effect, the Monte Carlo's unusual proportions seemed to give it an edge in handling balance at medium-length NASCAR oval tracks. By the late 1970s, the Monte Carlo was Chevrolet's standard-bearer in stock-car competition.

Monte Carlo Powertrain

The 2007 Monte Carlo's engine and front suspension are mounted in an extruded aluminum cradle and the V8 engine became available, for the first time in a Monte Carlo since 1987. Last year's 240-HP 3.9-liter V-6 has been discontinued, though it's still available in the Impala. All the engines are controlled by a four-speed automatic transmission. Models equipped with a V6 engine have a two-point engine-mounting system, while V8 models have a three-point mounting system. The base-level 3.5-liter V6, which was new for 2006, features cam phasing to optimize performance and economy. It is rated 211 horsepower at 5900 rpm, and 214 pound-feet of torque at 4800. For 2007, this engine can be configured for compatibility with both regular gasoline and E85 fuel. The SS is powered by a 5.3-liter V8 rated 303 horsepower at 5600 rpm and 323 pound-feet at 4400. Displacement on Demand (DOD) technology shuts off four cylinders in light-load cruising, for a claimed 12 percent improvement in fuel economy.

Safety Features - 2007

Dual-stage frontal airbags are standard on all models, as are front seat belt pretensioners, three-point seat belts in all seating positions, LATCH child-seat anchors in all rear-seat positions, strategically padded interior roof rails, and a strengthened front seat structure. Safety all-disc antilock brakes are installed in the Monte Carlo LT and SS. A tire pressure monitoring system is standard.

Inside the Monte Carlo

The interior of the 2007 Chevy Monte Carlo, which was restyled in 2006, has a clean, simple, and tailored appearance. The optional Nuance leather-covered seats feature deck seams around their perimeter and French seams on the center cushions. The seats have firm cushions and excellent lumbar support that provides comfort, especially during long drives. The trunk is large, but the opening is relatively small, making it difficult to load big boxes. Trunk space totals 15.8 cubic feet. Audio systems on the 2007 Monte Carlo feature new, simple-to-operate radios that are compatible with the OnStar system. The OnStar system, which is now standard, has a new Directions and Connections upgrade, which allows turn-by-turn directions. An optional remote starter allows owners to warm or cool the car before getting inside. The base setup comes with six speakers and CD/MP3 capability. These cars have seats for five occupants and the revamped cockpit-style instrument panel displays a new gauge layout, and chrome accents the gearshift lever. Manual dual-zone climate control, a six-way power driver's seat and heated front seats are optional. Cruise control buttons are mounted on the steering wheel, and auxiliary radio controls can be installed.

Chevy Monte Carlo Design

With the Monte Carlo's facelift in 2006, the exterior has a smooth, mature, and sophisticated look. The exterior changes in 2007 were relatively minor. The Monte Carlo LS receives 16-inch wheels and a soft-riding suspension. The LT upgrades to 17-inch wheels, and the SS receives 18-inchers and a firmer suspension. It has large headlights that contain three independent lighting units. Flat-blade windshield wipers provide consistent pressure against the glass. Monte Carlos have a rear deck lid spoiler. The Monte Carlo SS is distinguished by a black-diamond crosshatch grille and a purposeful rear spoiler that emphasizes the car's NASCAR heritage. Corvette-inspired bright exhaust outlets also are standard on the SS, and a new Rally Stripe package is available.

Trims for 2007

The Monte Carlo LS comes with air conditioning, cruise control, power windows, mirrors, and programmable door locks, six-speaker AM/FM/CD/MP3 stereo with speed-sensing volume and auxiliary digital media jack, front bucket seats and floor console, six-way power driver's seat with manual lumbar adjustment, split-folding rear seat, tilt steering, metallic interior trim, automatic headlamps, 225/60 all-season radials on 16-inch steel wheels, 7.0 Generation OnStar with a one-year subscription, and a Passlock security system. A recent upgrade to the standard remote keyless entry allows drivers to use the red panic button to locate a car misplaced in a parking lot without activating the alarm. ABS with traction control is available. 16-inch aluminum wheels and carpeted floor mats are also available.

The Monte Carlo LT adds dual-zone automatic climate control; Radio Data System (RDS); leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls; carpeted floor mats; ABS with traction control and Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD); a tire-pressure monitor; and 225/55 touring tires on 17-inch machined aluminum wheels. Powertrain dampening is upgraded for quieter running. LT is available with more options, including a power tilt-and-slide sunroof, leather seats, six-disc CD changer; XM Satellite Radio, eight-speaker premium sound system, and universal remote.

The Monte Carlo SS comes with leather upholstery, heated front seats, XM Satellite Radio (with a three-month trial subscription), and 235/50 W-rated Goodyear Eagle RS-A tires on 18-inch machined aluminum wheels. Also standard is a stiffer suspension that GM calls FE4. A Convenience Package for SS adds a universal remote, auto-dimming inside rearview mirror, and heated exterior mirrors. Also available are polished aluminum wheels and a new Rally Stripe package in black or silver. Cloth upholstery can be substituted for credit. Otherwise, SS offers the same options as LT.

With 38 years of heritage behind it, the 2007 Chevrolet Monte Carlo is a fast, competent, and comfortable cruiser on interstate travel and a whole lot of fun on back roads. The SS model promises spirited acceleration, decent handling, and good brakes. This is a car shaped in a wind tunnel with the purpose of finishing laps at a NASCAR super-speedway as quickly as possible. This car is certainly not for everyone; it is really a matter of style and performance. The Monte Carlo gets a fuel economy range of 31 mpg Hwy, and 21 mpg City.


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