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I spotted an (insert obscure car name here) classic car today!

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Comments

  • fintailfintail Posts: 32,907
    I've had my fintail since I was 18, in no time I will have had it for 18 years. I could get my original purchase price back no doubt, but money has been spent in the meantime - mostly when the car needed rings and kingpins. I wouldn't be able to get the total expenses back, but it has been driven a bit over those years. I am lucky that indy MB shops aren't scared of it, but I haven't done any real restoration work - it just costs too much, and there's only a negative return.

    Interesting that all three went down under. I wonder if the cars get RHD conversions, as many American cars did back in the day.

    I can imagine the driver of that Caddy when new - would have been dressed very chic for the time.
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,349
    Stude did do RHD at the South Bend plant, for export and also for "Rural Router" Larks. My cars have not been converted to RHD as I have seen photos since they've been there.

    If I bought that Caddy, I'd have to get a pair of Ray Bans (more likely, cheap knockoffs), and have my wife wear cat's eye glasses.

    I always think I'd like "Mad Men" on HBO, but we don't have HBO. It's supposedly that early '60's time period that I find so fascinating, although remember very little of it personally.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 32,907
    I've seen all kinds of 60s-70s American cars with RHD conversions in Australia, some of them kind of odd (big Chryslers, gargantuan T-Birds, etc). As the Australian automotive scene never gave up the big V8 sedan, maybe that makes sense.

    I can see that Caddy being driven by a classy woman in a period dress and pillbox hat, with a fancy period style handbag, kind of a Jackie Kennedy style maybe. A man in a casual suit and fedora alongside her. That era certainly had style and some good design, from houses to clothes to cars.
  • berriberri Posts: 4,000
    Weren't the Imperials of that era known for solid construction and craftsmanship? I believe they sell for a lot less than a comparable Cadillac and are rarer too?
  • texasestexases Posts: 5,424
    "I believe they sell for a lot less than a comparable Cadillac and are rarer too? "

    Could be, but the parts would be harder to find, given the few Imperials on the road these days.

    These big luxury cars are, like today, loaded with all the options, and when they break....
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,349
    I just love '65-66 Imperials (OK, the '64 is nearly identical but I like the front end styling of the '65 and '66 better). I'm reminded of Mr. Drysdale on "The Beverly Hillbillies" when I see one.

    I always liked the '63 Imperial too. It's the goofy '61 and '62, but minus the 'sparrow shredder' taillights. I particularly like it from the rear.
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,349
    edited December 2012
    I never look at Imperials on eBay...until now.

    Here's '63 coupe. Reupholstered front seat at least...and is this what an Imperial front seat looked like in '63? Where's the center armrest? ;)

    I think fintail mentioned it, but I agree... Chrysler seemed to hold onto 'bigger than life' '50's styling...even interior and instrument panel...longer than the other guys.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ELEGANT-UPSCALE-413-CI-V8-3-SPEED-AUTO-A-C-POWER-- - WINDOWS-AUTOMOTIVE-ROY-/281042521660?pt=US_Cars_Trucks&hash=item416f708e3c

    Personally, even though it's a four-door, I'd much rather have that '61 Caddy than that Imperial, and the owners were looking for about the same money.

    Here's a nice '66 Imperial hardtop sedan. Got the leather that's got lines in it look in front, but BIN of $16K. It's more timeless styling than the Caddy I think, but...again, for a complete 'time capsule', I think it's hard to beat the Caddy.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/Clean-and-drives-like-dream-Black-exterior-white-- - pearl-interior-/271129101187?pt=US_Cars_Trucks&hash=item3f208dc383

    Nice '67 convertible, very rare...to me, this is about when Imperials became not all that more exciting than New Yorkers (my opinion only):

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/440ci-V-8-1-577-Produced-Very-Nice-Running-and-Dr- - iving-Example-/271128797738?pt=US_Cars_Trucks&hash=item3f2089222a

    On eBay, there's also a '68 Imperial 4-door "post" sedan...it has frames around the side glass. I had forgotten there were Imperials like that then.

    My friend, who was the Studebaker dealer in our hometown, was approached by the Dodge 'road man' to take on a Dodge franchise when the elderly owner got out of the business. My friend was invited to the unveiling of the '62 Dodges in Detroit, pre-public and for dealers only. When asked what he thought, he said, "Those look worse than Studebakers!"

    He didn't add Dodge, probably much to his chagrin a few years later!
  • ab348ab348 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, CanadaPosts: 1,541
    That '67 is the pick of the litter. The '67 Imperial was a fabulous car, maybe the high-water mark for '60s Imps, and the convertible is exceptionally rare. That one looks outstanding, although I wish they had not changed the paint color. I wonder what the reserve would be. Too bad it has a black interior - not only are those always a bad choice in a convertible, but that season Chrysler offered a gorgeous silver leather interior option that looks fabulous.

    2011 Buick Regal Turbo, 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass S Holiday Coupe

  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,349
    Silver leather would be outstanding.

    IMHO only, it's too bad I believe the '67 uses the New Yorker's instrument panel. That said, I like that light turquoise color but I didn't notice that the original color had been changed.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,589
    I think Imperials from 1957-66 were solid, sturdy cars, but unfortunately suffered from having the same drivetrain as a Chrysler New Yorker, but weighing up to 1,000 lb more.

    They were put together better than other Chrysler products of the era, but I think a Cadillac would still have better fit and finish, and a higher quality interior.

    Where an Imperial would win out though, would be a demolition derby. The 1960-66 models, which used the same frame as the '57-59, but had some Unibody tricks incorporated into the body to stiffen it up, were especially rugged.

    As for finding parts, Imperial-specific stuff is probably hard to get, but a lot of the generic stuff, like drivetrains, power windows, etc, was probably shared with the Chrysler New Yorker and such.

    Personally, my favorite Imperial of that era is the 1960. There's just something about that front-end I like. It had a proud, accomplished look to it, that says "I've arrived!"
  • fintailfintail Posts: 32,907
    Imperials make me think of this:

    We're the ones in the Imperial, and we're running last?! :shades:

    A 1960 must be pretty rare today.
  • ab348ab348 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, CanadaPosts: 1,541
    From what I understand, Imperials are often prohibited from being entered in demo derbies for precisely that reason. They were built like tanks.

    2011 Buick Regal Turbo, 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass S Holiday Coupe

  • ab348ab348 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, CanadaPosts: 1,541
    Here's '63 coupe. Reupholstered front seat at least...and is this what an Imperial front seat looked like in '63? Where's the center armrest?

    That front seat upholstery looks all wrong to me, both in terms of pattern (the stitching pattern is too wide) and the fabric (looks like a velour material). Too bad.

    2011 Buick Regal Turbo, 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass S Holiday Coupe

  • ab348ab348 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, CanadaPosts: 1,541
    edited January 2013
    The IPs are similar but not identical. Here is a '67 Chrysler New Yorker IP:

    image

    Here's the Imperial:

    image

    The Chrysler IP bowed out in the center while the Imp's did not, and the Imp also had a number of neat features like a pop-up vanity mirror in the glove compartment and a cover for the radio.

    2011 Buick Regal Turbo, 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass S Holiday Coupe

  • berriberri Posts: 4,000
    I think 1966 was the last year of stand alone Imperials?
  • bhill2bhill2 Posts: 1,271
    It may just be my inner car freak showing, but I am somewhat bothered by the fact that the seller of that '66 doesn't know that year has a 440 in it, not a 413.

    2009 BMW 335i, 2003 Corvette cnv, 2001 Jaguar XK cnv, 1985 MB 380SE (the best of the lot)

  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,349
    I thought that '67 Imperial had a 'bowed out' look to the top pad, but maybe that's just sagging of an old vinyl part. Thank you for pointing out the differences, and there are quite a few.

    A "pop-up vanity mirror in the glove compartment"? Wonder where they got that idea? Same place they were able to pick up the "Challenger" and "Daytona" names! ;)
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Kent, OHPosts: 7,349
    In my memory, it's unusual to see a convertible with a rear-seat center armrest like that Imperial has. My experience with large convertibles is mostly GM, but I always figured in a convertible, GM made the rear-seat back cushion thinner, making a center armrest not nearly as useful. Matter of fact, in the early '70's, GM even started cutting out rear-seat center armrests in coupes, when the hardtop sedan version of the same model and interior trim had them (Pontiac Grand Ville with optional Custom interior; Buick Centurion).

    Neat touch on that Imperial.

    Is that vinyl or leather inside? If leather, it's avoided the wrinkly/lined leather look that seems so typical.
  • ab348ab348 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, CanadaPosts: 1,541
    edited January 2013
    I'm pretty sure it's leather.

    Here's a pic of the silver leather interior. Imagine how great it would look with the original Charcoal Gray Metallic paint on that '67.

    image

    Regarding rear-seat center armrests, I suspect GM did that because the top mechanism ate up significant width in the rear because the frames went into each side until '71, making the rear seat narrower than the coupes. Of course starting with the '71s the frame was different to alleviate that problem but I bet the GM bean counters wouldn't allow the armrest to return, as part of GM's continued cheapening up of their cars back then.

    2011 Buick Regal Turbo, 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass S Holiday Coupe

  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,589
    I remember reading that when the Mopars were redesigned for 1969, the convertibles picked up about 10" in back seat shoulder room, because of a redesigned top mechanism. At first, I thought that might have been a bit of hyperbole, but after seeing how much room the surrounds for the top intrude into the back seat area, I can believe it. Looks like it eats about 5" on either side, easily.

    I wonder what kind of gains GM saw when they went to the "scissors" type mechanism for 1971?

    Awhile back, I took a tape measure to my '67 Catalina, and the way I measured its shoulder room, got 62.5" in the front seat, and about 56" in the back seat, measured between the narrower area in between where the top cuts in. Looking at the sales brochures, Pontiac didn't publish shoulder room, although they did show legroom and headroom stats. I just checked the 1970 Buick brochure though, and they're showing the LeSabre convertible as only having 52.3" of shoulder room in the back! So, I wonder if GM changed the top mechanism from '67-68 to '69-70? Or, maybe I just measured wrong?

    I just dug up a '71 Buick brochure, and they're showing the LeSabre convertible at 61.7" of shoulder room! So, it looks like the big '71 GM cars got about a 10" gain in shoulder room, too!

    I think the '71 full-sizers had something
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