Hershey | Lot 166
1931 Chrysler CG Imperial Convertible Coupe by LeBaron
$192,500 USD | Sold
| Hershey, Pennsylvania
8 October 2015
- Formerly owned by Imperial expert Joe Morgan
- Original chassis, engine, and body
- Older restoration in the original colors
- CCCA Full Classic
125 bhp, 384.8 cu. in. L-head inline eight-cylinder engine, four-speed manual overdrive transmission with free-wheeling, solid front axle and live rear axle with semi-elliptical leaf-spring suspension, and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 145 in.
The 1931 CG Imperial was a bellwether of where Chrysler’s top-of-the-line models would be heading, as they were now entering the Classic Era at full steam. Earlier Imperials had been well-built, quality cars, but they were somewhat, dare we say it, dull. This new model was wonderfully different. It was a grand 145-inch-wheelbase beauty that had a bold radiator shell canted back at a rakish angle and a long hood that emphasized the great power lurking below it, which was a 384.8-cubic inch nine-main-bearing unit that could produce 125 horsepower. The fenders flowed behind Duesenberg-like bumpers, and the headlights became sleek bowls.
SERIAL NUMBER 7802566
The authenticity of the rare Convertible Coupe offered here has been verified by noted Chrysler Imperial historian Joe Morgan, who himself owned this car over a decade ago, having acquired it from David Buck, of Arizona. According to Mr. Morgan, the car retains its original body, frame, and engine with which it was delivered in San Francisco, and in its present restoration, it is finished in the same attractive colors as when new: Abbott Gray and Tonawanda Green. Remarkably, the car eventually made its way through unknown parties from San Francisco to West Africa, from which it was repatriated to the U.S. by Mr. Buck.
Following its restoration, the car was purchased from Mr. Morgan by Alfred Wallace, of Rhode Island, and was acquired, in turn, from him by its present owner. The restoration has mellowed significantly with age, with the lacquer finish showing much patina throughout, cracking on the cowl, and chipping around the panel gaps. Similarly, the driver’s side window has dropped slightly and would benefit from adjustment.
Correct Trippe Safety Lights are fitted to the front bumper, a stone guard is mounted over the radiator, and proper chrome wire wheels are fitted, including the side-mounts, which bear Cord-badged mirrors. The tan leather interior is still tight and clean, as are the carpets, and the dashboard and instruments are clear and fresh. The odometer records 12,378 miles, presumably since restoration. As the car has been maintained in storage for the last few years, a proper servicing would be recommended to the new owner. However, it should be noted that the brakes, including the master cylinders, were rebuilt in 2010 and the ignition and transmission were sorted at the same time, receipts for which are on file.
This elegant and desirable Chrysler Imperial, featuring a very seldom-seen body style, has much potential for CCCA CARavans, for which CG Imperials are famously ideal.