In the early 60s, the biggest name in luxury performance was the Chevrolet Impala. With full-sized comfort and a variety of powerful engines, the Impala could be dressed for anything from a night at the opera to a day at the drag races. When the muscle car phenomenon hit, the cars got smaller, the engines got bigger, and the Impala started drifting towards the luxury side of the equation. Nevertheless, the SS continued, keeping the performance DNA intact in the Impala, and the redesigned 1967 Impalas are a great combination of full-sized comfort and potent V8 performance. This particular Impala is a real code 68 SS coupe that has lived its entire life in California.
A Tuxedo Black black plate Impala SS sport coupe shows you everything you need to know about the top of the line Chevy. Beautifully proportioned and with beautiful curves in all the right places, there was no question that Chevy was serious about making a big splash with the Impala. But when you have a car as big as this, and decide to paint all that sheetmetal black, you know it had better be perfect. Fortunately, this one is a solid west coast car that needed very little work to look as good as it does. From the simple, unadorned front end to the quasi-fastback tail, this is an extremely straight car that does its black paint justice. Panel gaps are good all around, and nobody will miss you when you pull into the local cruise with this sinister black beast.
The great thing about these cars is that Chevy designers pretty much let the sheetmetal do all the talking. Theres no flashy trim, no chrome grilles on the quarter panels, not even a padded roof on this one, and most enthusiasts seem to prefer it that way. Of course, this was the 60s, so the bumpers are chrome, and theres stainless steel around the windows and wheel openings, and it is all in excellent condition. Out back, the traditional Impala six-taillight design has been modified into two large housings, each with three elements. The grille is simple with just an Impala SS badge introducing the car. Glass is good, including that huge rear window, which is virtually impossible to replace today. And yes, thats a rear deck mounted power antenna, which was an unusual option.
With the 1967 Impala SS, you could get anything from an inline-six to a thundering 427 under the hood, and this one is equipped with a strong-running L30 327/275 horsepower V8. Look at the price tag again, and then look at how beautifully restored the engine bay is. Part of that comes from clean living in California, but most of it took quite a bit of time and money. The Chevy Orange power plant really jumps out of the satin black engine bay, and shows very little sign of being driven. A correct air cleaner with 327 Turbo-Fire 275 Horsepower decals sits atop a 4-barrel carburetor, correct rams horn exhaust manifolds look like they just popped out of the molds, and correct hoses and clamps were used throughout. Youll also note factory A/C and a fully intact smog system, because this is, after all, a California car. A reproduction Delco battery has been recently installed, and it runs beautifully. The 327 is a great-running engine thats eager to rev, smooth while cruising, with a great exhaust note, and despite the Impalas size, it is startlingly quick.
The engine is backed by a two-speed PowerGlide automatic transmission and a reliable 10-bolt rear end. Not restored, but merely indicative of what a clean car this is, the chassis is serviceable and tidy with a lot of new parts. The brakes and suspension have been maintained properly, and the exhaust system is definitely healthier than stock. The wheels look an awful lot like a set of vintage Keystones or Kelsey-Hayes, and they wear a set of reproduction F70-14 Firestone redline tires for a true period performance look.
The well-appointed interior easily has room for five, and if you have a family or a bunch of friends who like to cruise, theres just nothing better than a full-sized car. A nice combination of well-preserved original pieces and some restored items, the black bucket seats give the car a definitely sporty feel. The full-length console is a beautifully styled piece of brushed aluminum that houses that slender T-handle shifter. The dash pad and gauges are in excellent condition, and they all work correctly, including the clock. An original style AM radio lives below the HVAC controls, and everything works as it should. Bring your buddies, because theres plenty of stretch-out room in the back seat, and the seats are as comfortable as they look. Overhead the headliner is taut and wrinkle-free, while the black carpets look so good they have to be recent. Theyre protected by a monogrammed set of floor mats that will keep them looking new for years. The trunk is also nicely finished with a correct mat, full-sized spare, and a jack assembly.
Documentation includes an original owners manual, title history, and even a pair of the original California black license plates, which are probably worth a nice chunk of change on their own.
If you think the only performance cars in the Chevy stable were the Camaro and Chevelle, guess again. Theres something about a full-sized car with a lot of power that appeals to some people, myself included. For a while, the only way to get big horsepower was to buy a big car, and the Impala continues that tradition. With factory A/C, that potent 327 under the hood, and the spacious interior, this one calls out for a cross-country road trip. The Impala always meant traveling first class, and when the car is as nice as this black-on-black SS sport coupe, its a pleasure. Call now!
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