Rough Ragtop: 1965 Chevy Impala SS

1965 Impala SS Convertible

When some of you asked for more features on Impalas upon reading the latest Copart post, we heard you loud and clear! Of course, here at Barn Finds, we like to find those needy projects that require the love and affection only a true enthusiast can offer, which is why this 1965 Impala SS convertible here on craigslist caught our eye. 

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As the picture above shows, this Impala has likely been sitting outside for a good amount of time with no top and no protection. This has not helped matters on the inside of the car, where it’s safe to say the interior has become a dumping ground of sorts. This is the type of thing I see all the time in junkyards, and I suspect this project Impala has been locked away in someone’s personal pick-and-pull.

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The seller notes in the ad that the car does not run or drive, but the sale will include the necessary panels to replace the rusty floors. The bucket seats are there, and clearly so are the hubcaps and center console. You’ll be doing a lot of cleaning before you get into floor patching, in my opinion. The car also sports a later-model 350 that ran when parked.

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Image courtesy of AuctionsAmerica.com

Those classic Impala tail lights dot one of the best rear ends of the era, especially when the convertible roof is peeled away. This car will need everything to look like the finished example above, but for $1,500, it seems like a worthy winter project. As long as the rust is contained to the floors, it could be worth a go – what do you think?

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Comments

  1. grant

    The bottom edge of the doors and fenders and quarters look wasted

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  2. Ethan

    First order of business would be to ditch that ridiculous steering wheel.

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    • Jason Houston

      Hey, that’s a rare and priceless go-kart steering wheel. All 1965 Chevrolets offered those as an added-cost option to increase the top-end speed of the car. They were so popular, the go-kart industry had to buy steering wheels from Chevrolet just to make their go-karts functional. Why, that steering wheel cwould probably bring 50c at Hershey!

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  3. randy

    Total trash. What a shame. I prefer the tail lights of the 66 and later on these impalas. I never got accustomed to the 3 round tail lights.

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    • Rocco Member

      ’68 Impala had 3 taillights. I think the 3 taillights are classic. Just an opinion.

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      • randy

        We had a ’67 Impala fastback, and a ’68 SS Impala, neither had the three taillights on each side like the one in this post.

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      • Rocco Member

        The ’68 tail lights are in the bumper, three on each side.

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      • randy

        I had to search out some pics. I remember them now, I knew they were not like the ’65, but I thought they were like the ’67. Man I miss my sisters ’68 SS.
        Someone had already swapped engines when my stepfather bought it for $200.00 back in 1975. She ruined it somehow, and got a ’71 lemans sport.
        My stepfather got $100.00 for the car with something wrong with it, I was kept out of the loop. I would have quickly given him $100.00 for it had I known he was selling it. It was straight and beautiful powder blue, bucket seats, pwr windows, 8 track, center console floor shift auto.

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      • Rocco Member

        Cool.

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    • Jason Houston

      Funny, but that’s been my feeling ever since the ’66 came out. Never could stomach the ’65-’66 Impala, as they look like big, fat pancakes, but the ’66 tail lights were a small improvement.

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  4. dave

    1968 in Detroit, I was 16 and looking for a 4 speed car. A friend gave me a lead. Go to look at a car and it’s a 65 Chev Impala S’S Convertible. Has 20.000 miles and the neatest part? It has a 409 400HP 4 speed. He had just lost his lisence and living at mom’s house. She said sell. Car was 400.00. Couldn’t afford it and we made a deal at 50 per month and he let me have the car. Probably the most rarest 409 produced. Feb was the engine change over to the famous 396 and the 409 was dropped.

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    • dave

      Car was triple black and it was the fastest car being in the 10th grade,

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      • Jason Houston

        Now, THAT’S one nice Chevrolet! Still have it?

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    • Rocco Member

      Rare with 409. Too bad you don’t still have it I assume.

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  5. Dan the Man

    How Sad!! I once owned a 1965 after I graduated from High School. !! These photos bring back fond memories!!

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  6. Jay

    I had a 1966 convertible with a 283 and a powerglide. It was a great car.

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  7. piper62j

    That’s a darn shame.. Those are great cars and very stylish, even today..

    I’ll never understand how or why they are just left to decay outdoors.. Sad

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    • randy

      Then the “owner” has an epiphany, I’ve got a cool old car worth a lot of money.

      WAS worth a lot of money.

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  8. Danger Dan

    Personal favorite. Drove one through the flood of ’98 in tahoe. Sounded like a submarine chugging thru 3 feet of water. Soda cans and candy wrappers were floating around in the back. A very durable machine, had 6 of em. The 4 speed was outrageous. Nobody could believe the behemoth could move out like that. Wish I could find another, and the 409 is super rare dave.

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  9. dave

    If that car was a 409 400, it would be worth about 20 to 30 Gs in that condition.

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  10. randy

    She’s so fine, my 409. There was a ’64 Impala that used to street race at California Crossing in Dallas, that looked terrible, but beat all comers on skinny street tires.

    I was in love ever since.

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  11. Rocco Member

    I almost bought a ’65SS hardtop 327 3-speed on the tree in high school. It was burgundy with black int. I had a ’56 Chevy that was pretty cool anyway, and paid for, so my parents wouldn’t co-sign for a payment in 1966-67 even though I had a job. They figured I would be going in the service before it was paid for and they would be stuck with it. They were right. Oh well, I survived, and later discovered that Mustangs were faster and cooler. I got out of the Navy with a ’65 Fastback 289 4-speed, mild cam, and beat the cars I always admired. Well they all weighed around 4000lbs with around 350-400 HP, and I only had a little 2800lb Mustang with maybe 275-300 HP. Weight means a lot.
    I still like the old Chebbies though. I still think they are great cars, so please no flames.

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  12. Jason Houston

    Nice looking car, especially coming from Philthydelphia.

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  13. Norm Wrensch

    I’m willing to bet that the frame is also junk. They rusted though even without siting on the ground like this one. I think I would have to pass on it. I don’t think there is enough left to fix.

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