Hershey | Lot 251

1958 Chevrolet Impala 'Tri-Power' Convertible



$148,500 USD | Sold

United States | Hershey, Pennsylvania

6 October 2017

Chassis No.
  • Equipped with the highly desirable 348 Tri-Power V-8
  • Loaded with options, including power steering, brakes, windows, and seat
  • 2012 AACA National Award Winner, James Melton Memorial Cup
  • Meticulous frame-off restoration completed in 2008

The American public was first exposed to the Impala name when a one-of-a-kind concept car appeared as part of the 1956 GM Motorama. When Impala officially joined the Chevrolet lineup in 1958, it was top-of-the-line, but officially considered a part of the Bel Air series. Both a two-door hardtop coupe and convertible were available. Chevrolet began its march to find a more upscale buyer, and the styling intentionally mocked Cadillacs of the era. The massive grille, which mimicked those of Buick and Oldsmobile, reflected the desire of GM stylist Harley Earl. Quad headlights made their first appearance.

For 1958 all Chevrolets used an all-new, one-year-only bodyshell shared with Pontiac. It featured a low-slung, X-member frame containing all coil suspension, replacing the old leaf springs. Ads touted the beauty and the “low, thrusting silhouette” of the full-size models – up to 9 inches longer and 5 inches lower, on a 2.5-inch longer wheelbase than before. Impala interiors featured a competition-inspired steering wheel and color-keyed door panels with brushed aluminum trim.

Chevy introduced the 348-cu. in. “Turbo Thrust” engine for 1958. It was essentially the marque’s truck motor and Chevy’s second-generation V-8. It was called the “W” engine referring to the shape of its valve covers, and it eventually evolved into the legendary “409.” With tri-power or three two-barrel carburetors, 280 hp was on tap, proving that bigger was not only better, but also necessary in the escalating horsepower wars. Everything was so new that even the series designations were changed: Delray, Biscayne, Bel Air, and Impala. This worked as Chevrolet reclaimed the top spot in sales from Ford and captured 29.5 percent of the market for 1958. Despite its sales success, this was a one-year-only model as the 1959 models were all-new yet again.

Arguably one of the finest available, this spectacular Impala hails from a collection of meticulously prepared and maintained stable of automobiles that are of the highest standards. Part of the consignor’s collection since 2004, the California car has received a superb body-off restoration by J.R. Burkholder of Paradise, Pennsylvania, completed in 2008. It has always been stored in a climate-controlled environment. Attesting to the quality of the restoration, it received its AACA 1st Junior and Senior awards in 2008 and was a 2012 AACA National Award Winner, the James Melton Memorial Cup. It remains in meticulous and pampered condition to this day.

Matching its firewall trim tag, this Honey Beige example is loaded with accessories and is equipped with the highly desirable 348/280 “Tri-Power” V-8 with Turboglide transmission, and posi-traction rear axle. Options include power steering, brakes, windows, and seat; tinted glass; left and right outside rearview mirrors; day/night interior rearview mirror; dual rear antennas; Wonderbar AM radio with rear seat speaker, tissue dispenser; lighted ash tray, under dash courtesy, emergency brake, underhood, and trunk lights; along with the very rare NOS continental kit with lock, padded dash, and windshield washer. The correct jack and boot for the convertible top are also included.

If you are looking for the very best in Fifties Chevrolets, make no doubt about it—this is your car.

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