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Daily Driver: 1965 Chevrolet Impala 396 Wagon

I’ve always had a passion for station wagons.  Even as a kid growing up in the seventies I was always envious of our neighbors who sprung for wagons, when all we ever had were 4-door sedans.  If you are looking for a vintage station wagon with lots of room and plenty of power, this 1965 Chevrolet Impala Wagon might be a good car for you.  Located in Twin Falls, Idaho, it can be seen here on eBay with a current bid of $11,165 and just a little less than 8 days to go.  Many thanks go out to Barn Finds reader local_sheriff for the tip on this one.

The seller tells us that this Impala is an unrestored original and that the current owner has had it for 1 year.  It is said to run great and is used as a daily driver, with mileage stated to be 59,200.  At almost 18 feet long and weighing in at just over 4,400 pounds, it’s good to see that it left the factory with a 396 Turbo-Jet engine, which for the 1965 model year was good for 325 horsepower.  The car also came from the factory with a 2-speed Powerglide automatic transmission and a 12 bolt rear end.

There are a couple of minor rust issues that the seller mentions, and I thought it was odd that they weren’t repaired since the seller also says that the car was repainted not long ago.  There is also some damage on top of the front driver’s side fender which is not specifically mentioned but there is a pretty good photograph of it.  Inside, we have a reupholstered interior that looks to be in very nice shape and a carpet that looks to be in reasonably good condition.  The dashboard has survived well although the steering wheel has some wear and a few cracks.  The car came with an AM radio and even factory ride-leveling air shocks, but unfortunately not with air conditioning so you’re going to need to open those vent flaps on the front windows on hot days.

Overall this looks like a really nice survivor condition station wagon, which the seller claims to be a great car with a few minor things that need to be repaired.  With that 396 under the hood, I’d probably be tempted to enjoy and drive it just like it is for a while and maybe make a few repairs here and there.  The non-matching hubcaps would probably have to go pretty soon though.  What are your thoughts about this Impala wagon?  What do you think would be a fair price to pay?


  1. alphasud Member

    Not sure if artesian turquoise could be had on the roof like that but I like it. They got the styling right with the 65 models and the wagon configuration doesn’t take anything away from that. From personal experience Idaho and east Washington state is easier on cars rust wise than most. Less sun also keeps interiors in better condition as well.

    Like 4
    • Chuck Dickinson

      Yes, white w/turq roof WAS a factory two-tone.

      Like 4
  2. MathieuB

    What is the unit on the driver’s inner fender?

    Like 1
    • carmicheals

      The eBay listing says “Under the hood there is a rare vacuum powered air compressor and a line that runs to the rear shocks for air ride/ leveling.” I’m wondering what’s teed into the heater hose…

      Like 3
      • alphasud Member

        Probably rear heater

        Like 0
      • Jesse

        If you follow the hose back it looks like a Kats tank engine heater.

        Like 1
  3. Bill Member

    Nice shot of the Perrine Bridge in the background. Let’s go BASE jumping!!

    Like 1
  4. charlie Member

    Had the Pontiac version of this car – same body, different trim and mechanicals, 9 passenger, 400 cu, 400 hp (claimed), 4’x8′ plywood would fit in back, Chevy version was much more practical, more ground clearance, bigger wheels, and with air helper suspension in rear could carry more weight or bigger trailer. Bought for $900 when it was 9 years old, sold for $200 when rusted frame made it unsafe 4 years later.

    Just because it is old does not mean it is worth a lot – same for me, I guess.

    Like 4
  5. Larry D

    I’ve always loved these big Chevrolet wagons with big blocks. I guess because a friend of mine in high school lived on a horse ranch where his mother raised Arabian show horses. And she had a ’66 wagon with a 396 also. In addition, when I was in my 20s, I had a friend who was older than I was. He was a surveyor by profession but his real love in life was Tri-Five Chevrolets. He bought so many of those cars and he always transported them around on his trailer being pulled by one of the many big-block Chevrolet station wagons he had.

    So, yes they are instilled in me. I just hate that I never owned one.

    Like 3
  6. John M Calabro

    Manual brakes?

    Like 0
  7. Chuck Dickinson

    Manual brakes, and I didn’t see a PS pump in the engine shot, tho’ it may be low enough to be hidden. I hope so for whomever drives it!

    Like 1
  8. Erik Tisher

    With a Vintage Air and Gearvendors upgrade, I’d daily this!

    Like 1
  9. Glenn C. Schwass Member

    I love the roof color. Very nice with the 396 and air ride…

    Like 2

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