Chevrolet Impala Convertible
With the introduction of “The Hot One,” the spirited new small-block V-8 for 1955, sales leader Chevrolet also became the performance leader in the low-priced field. Successive upgrades in 1956 and 1957 retained this edge, the latter boasting fuel injection and achieving the magic one-bhp-per-cubic-inch for its 283 cid engine.
A complete redesign heralded 1958, the flagship of which was a new Impala subseries in the Bel Air line, appearing in two body styles only, a convertible and an attractive “Sport Coupe” two-door hardtop. Impalas took Chevrolet’s styling cues to new heights, with uniquely-contoured rear fenders and extra taillights. A new engine, originally designed for truck use, joined the small-block V-8. Displacing 348 cubic inches, it was available in several stages of tune, producing 250 to 315 bhp.
All General Motors cars were redesigned for 1959, a reaction to Chrysler Corporation’s dramatic finned 1957s. Chevrolet featured a gull-wing rear fender adornment and long horizontal “eyebrows” in the leading edge of the hood. The top series was now called “Impala” across the board and offered a four-door sedan, two- and four-door hardtops, a convertible and a four-door Nomad station wagon.
This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in January of 2010 at the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa, Phoenix, Arizona and in January of 2012 at the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa, Phoenix, Arizona.
280 bhp, 348 cu. in. OHV V-8 engine, two-speed Powerglide automatic transmission, independent coil spring front suspension, live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, four-wheel hydraulic power drum brakes. Wheelbase: 119".
Source: RM Auctions
Photo Credit: Copyright Darin Schnabel