It is Father’s Day here in the US, where we celebrate all the things (both real and perceived) our fathers have done to endear themselves to us. Looking back at decades past, it seems like the 1950’s was a time of unlimited optimism, which is really total bullshit. Yes we had true advances in many fields, from space exploration, to tapping the promise of Nuclear Power Generation. We also had the escalating Cold War between the East and the West, as well as major Social Problems here at home including Racial Segregation. So, the 50’s wasn’t all that rosy when it comes to reality, but this was a time period that left a fascinating Automotive History, and here are two of the most optimistic vehicles introduced right in the middle of the decade. Take a look at these two Imperials by Chrysler, and see why the number three automaker was optimistic about trying to catch Cadillac to be dominate in the Fine Car Field… By the time this post runs, the auction for this 1955 Imperial Newport Hardtop Coupe will have closed, but so what? Let’s discover how this Imperial could have been one of the most intriguing cars in the fine car field…
Award winning 1955 Imperial Newport Coupe. One of 3418 produced for the 1955 model year. Finished in Tango Red and Oyster White. Has a 1957 392/325hp Hemi that we believe to be dealer installed in 1957 to replace the original 331. Equipped with the following: Air Conditioning Power Windows 4 Way Power Seat Power Steering Power Brakes Signal Seaking Radio Underwent an exhaustive 7 year restoration which was completed in 2011. This included paint, interior and all of the mechanicals. Engine was stripped and all parts cleaned, sandblasted and repainted. Engine was rebuilt and machined. New rod, main and camshaft bearings. Replaced Cam Shaft with reground component. Cylinder heads machined. Engine compartment was repainted. Engine reinstalled. Adjusted dwell and timing. Leak test performed. New brakes. Rear wheel cylinders replaced. Radiator Re-Cored and pressure tested. New water pump. New fuel lines. Power steering pump rebuilt. Generator rebuilt. New headlight bucket wires/dash and engine harness/air conditioner control harness/power seat control harness/power window control harness. Window switches rebuilt. Speedo rebuilt. Radio rebuilt. Seats were re-uplostered with new foam. New headliner. New carpet. New 15×6 Chrysler Imperial wheels with P235/75R15 Coker Whitwalls all around. New exhaust system. Everything works on the car. All windows/lights/switches/radio. All of the AC components from the firewall forward have been replaced or rebuilt but the AC is currently not hooked up. Multiple award winner. Receipts and documentation. Won Best of Show at the Annual Statewide Meet of Imperial Owners Club of California. All ready for the next owner to enjoy!!
This is a true West Coast car, offered for sale in Oakland California. The mileage is stated to be just over 35,000 miles, which places this car in the category of a true time capsule. It has rare options like Air Conditioning, and it is finished in a eye popping color combination. I bet your dad would look stunning behind the wheel. Unfortunately, the car was not sold at an opening bid of $39,900, which is really on the money for a comparable Lincoln or Cadillac, but what do you think? Let me know after you take a look at the listing: [sc:ebay itemid=”131209707856″ linktext=”1955 Chrysler Imperial Coupe ” ] And now, let’s move onto the Sedan version of the 1955 Imperial by Chrysler. It is not as stylish as the Newport Coupe we saw previously, but I feel that this car is even more understated, posh, and desirable than the coupe, but maybe that’s just me:
1955 CHRYSLER IMPERIAL SEDAN PERHAPS NOT MANY KNOW THAT THE 1955 IMPERIAL SEDAN WAS A ONE YEAR ONLY CAR. CHRYSLER WANTED TO COMPETE WITH FLEETWOOD SO THEY MADE EXTRA LEG ROOM IN THE BACK SEAT COMPARTMENT. THE IDEA DID NOT ATTRACT ENOUGH BUYERS SO JUST A LITTLE OVER 75OO UNITS WERE SOLD. THAT WAS NOT ENOUGH PRODUCTION TO JUSTIFY ANOTHER YEAR SO IN 1956 IMPERIAL USED THE STANDARD NEW YORKER SEDAN WITH AN IMPERIAL FRONT CLIP. THESE BEAUTIFUL CARS WERE ONLY AVAILABLE AT CHRYSLER-PLYMOUTH DEALERS NOT EXACTLY THE ENVIRONMENT A LUXURY CAR BUYER WAS LOOKING FOR. AFTER ALL CADILLAC HAD BEAUTIFUL STAND ALONE DEALERSHIPS WITH AMENITIES GALORE TO ATTRACT THE LUXURY BUYER. HAD THIS BUYER PERSISTED, HOWEVER, THEY WOULD HAVE FOUND A BEAUTIFUL VIRGIL EXNER INSPIRED DESIGN WHICH WAS THE FLAGSHIP OF CHRYSLER’S NEW FORWARD LOOK. THE 1955 IMPERIAL MAY BE ONE OF THE MOST BEAUTIFUL 50’S SEDANS EVER BUILT FINISHED OFF WITH A NEW GUNSIGHT TAIL LIGHT ASSEMBLY MOUNTED ON TOP OF THE REAR FENDERS. THE CAR LOOKED IMPORTANT AND INDEED LENT A VIABLE ALTERNATIVE TO CADILLAC AND LINCOLN. QUALITY AND DRIVE TRAIN MADE IMPERIAL A FABULOUS ROAD CAR. A 352 INCH HEMI ENGINE COUPLED WITH CHRYSLER’S FIRST FULLY AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSION WAS THE BEST IN THE FIELD. OUR CAR IS A LOW MILEAGE ORIGINAL. ALTHOUGH IT ONLY SHOWS SOME 22 K MILES FROM NEW THIS IS NOT DOCUMENTED AND SHOULD NOT BE RELIED UPON. HOWEVER, IT WILL BE CLEAR ON CLOSE INSPECTION THAT THIS CAR IS NOT A HIGH MILER EITHER. THE ENTIRE CAR IS EXCELLENT ORIGINAL WITH THE EXCEPTION OF ONE RESPRAY OF THE NEW SPRING YELLOW COLOR AND NEW CORRECT IMPERIAL SEAT UPHOLSTERY. THE CAR IS FITTED WITH FACTORY AIR THAT WORKS AND BLOWS COLD, WIRE WHEELS, DIAMOND BACK RADIAL WHITE WALL TIRES, HEMI ENGINE, POWERFLITE TRANSMISSION, POWER STEERING, POWER BRAKES, POWER WINDOWS, POWER SEAT, RADIO AND HEATER AND CLOCK. WE BELIEVE THIS COULD BE ONE OF THE NICEST 1955 IMPERIAL SEDANS AVAILABLE IN A STRIKING PERIOD COLOR COMBINATION AND CHRYSLER AIRTEMP AIR CONDITIONING. IT IS PRESENTED IN MARVELOUS ORIGINAL CONDITION WITH RECENT PAINT AND INTERIOR SEAT UPHOLSTERY.
Another California Car, and this has even less miles than the Newport Coupe above with a little over 22,000 on the odometer. It has a great deal of options, including Air Temp Air Conditioning, and wire wheels. Look at the interior, and you will notice how wild it is inside, yet restrained compared with its stablemate. With a little over 2 1/2 days until the auction closes, the Buy-It-Now price is $36,000 which is a bit less than the Coupe version, but it is still within the values of comparable Lincoln and Cadillac models. Make up your mind after taking a look at the listing here: [sc:ebay itemid=”291166438435″ linktext=”1955 Chrysler Imperial Sedan ” ]