Wed, 8th Aug 2012 13:00

Donnington Priory

  Lot 37

1964 Chevrolet Impala SS Sport Coupe

Estimated at £45,000 - £55,000

Lot details
Registration No: T.B.A.
Chassis No: 41447L197041
Mot Expiry: July 2013

First used to denote Chevrolet's top-of-the-line Bel Air offerings for 1958, the Impala name graced a standalone model range from the following year onwards. Defined by General Manager Ed Cole as 'a prestige car within the reach of the average American citizen' and developed under the watchful eye of master stylist Harley Earl, the newcomer went on to become - for a time at least - Chevy's best-selling (as well as its most expensive) product. Debuting midway through 1961, the Super Sport (SS) option package transformed the Impala into what was arguably the first true muscle car. Priced at just $53.80 but only available to those who had ordered a 348ci or 409ci V8, it comprised a floor shift console, passenger grab handle, steering column mounted tachometer, special body and interior trim, power steering, heavy-duty suspension, uprated power drum brakes and full wheel covers (complete with a three-blade spinner motif) etc.

Often cited as the catalyst for the horsepower war which raged between America's Big Three Manufacturers until the early 1970s, Chevy's legendary 409ci 'big block' engine featured wedge-shaped combustion chambers, impressively high compression ratios, four-barrel carburetion and anything up to 425hp. Needless to say, a 409ci-powered car had little to fear on the drag strip! Morphing from an option package into its own series for 1964 (but still based on GM's B-platform chassis) the Impala SS could be had in two-door Convertible or Sport Coupe guise only; the latter featuring a distinctive 'convertible hood bow' effect to its rear roof section. A solid lifter unit topped by twin four-barrel carburettors, the fearsome L80 code 409 boasted 425hp and 425lbft, while even the 'tamest' L33 code 409 claimed 340hp and 430lbft. Of the 185,325 Impala SS cars made during the 1964 model-year, just 8,684 had 409 V8s under the hood (the mighty powerplant being phased out altogether in February 1965). Not many cars can be driven to the sound of their own hit single, but the 409 was immortalised by the Beach Boys Number One record of the same name - how cool is that?

According to its chassis number - 41447L197041 - this particular 1964 Impala SS V8 Sport Coupe was built at Chevrolet's Los Angeles, California factory. Reportedly, a very well optioned, 'matching numbers' example, it is said to have begun life in 340hp tune but to have since been upgraded to 425hp (L80) specification. The subject of a painstaking rotisserie restoration, the four-seater is judged by the vendor to be in "excellent overall" condition. Indeed, he believes that it would be difficult to find a better 409ci-engined '64 Impala SS Sport Coupe anywhere (and certainly on this side of The Pond). Finished in White with Blue upholstery, the car sports trademark aluminium-turned inserts to its dashboard and centre console not to mention a full complement of 'Impala SS' badging. Riding on correct type wheels and equipped with such niceties as a four-speed manual gearbox and factory air-conditioning (the latter still in working order), the Chevy is understood to have covered less than 1,000 miles since its refurbishment. Worthy of close inspection, this imposing muscle car is offered for sale with UK V5C Registration Document (currently in the process of being issued) and fresh MOT certificate.

PLEASE NOTE: The registration document and MOT certificate for this vehicle are currently with the DVLA.

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