Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa
19 - 20 January 2017
Lot 282

1964 Imperial Crown Convertible

Offered from a Private Collection


$20,350 USD | Sold

United States | Phoenix, Arizona



Chassis No.
  • Offered from a private collection
  • One of 922 examples produced for 1964
  • Powerful 413/340 “Wedge” V-8 engine
  • Desirable factory air conditioning

340 bhp, 413 cu. in. OHV V-8 engine, three-speed TorqueFlite transmission, torsion bar independent front suspension, live rear axle with semi-elliptical leaf springs, and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 129 in.

After World War II, Chrysler’s Imperial line retreated to long-wheelbase sedan or limousine body styles. In the mid-1950s, a sea change in marketing took place. What had long been the most expensive Chrysler model became, for model year 1955, simply “Imperial,” offering three body styles in two series. This separate badging was a direct challenge to Lincoln and Cadillac. For the next two years, Imperial was basically a long-wheelbase Chrysler with a bolder grille, the latter appropriated for Chrysler’s performance model, the 300.

In 1957, however, Imperial was given a completely new personality, its gun-sight taillights incorporated into growing tailfins and curved side glass foretelling an industry trend. This year also marked the appearance of a faux spare tire embellishment on the decklid, a device first seen on the Virgil Exner-designed and Ghia-built concept cars of 1952–1953. The 1958 and 1959 Imperials represented facelifted versions of the ’57s, the ’59 presenting a much more aggressive face, with bold vertical teeth on a single horizontal grille bar. That year, the appearance changes were accompanied by a powertrain update, as the Hemi engine was replaced by a 413-cubic inch wedge unit. The excellent pushbutton TorqueFlite automatic transmission, of course, was standard.

For 1961 through 1963, a retro-classic touch was applied to frontal styling, with free-standing quad headlamps ensconced under the leading edge of the fenders. The soaring fins and gunsight taillights were retained, although the former were trimmed as time went on. For 1964, though, there was a complete makeover, as Elwood Engel’s new perpendicular style took hold at Chrysler Corporation. This car exhibits all those new qualities.

Formerly in the late Jim Rogers’ famed Sun Belt collection in Las Vegas, this Imperial Crown Convertible Coupe is powered by a 413-cubic inch Wedge engine rated at an impressive 340 horsepower. Finished in Nassau Blue, it has a white vinyl top and a matching blue leather interior. Divided front seats share a center section with fold-down arm rest, which can accommodate a third passenger in a pinch. Equipped with factory air conditioning and a pushbutton AM/FM radio, it has a remote control driver’s door mirror, a dashboard clock, and pushbutton transmission control, the last year offered at Chrysler. Wide whitewall tires complete the motif.

An original car that presents well in any company, as one of just 922 examples for 1964, this Imperial Crown convertible coupe will do just that.