Dual Quad 409! 1963 Chevrolet Impala

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Giddy-Up, Giddy-Up…naw, that’s way too overused a reference for a 409 CI engine-equipped Impala so I’ll dispense with the Beach Boys imagery and just stick to the subject which is a 1963 (yeah, I know, they were singing about a ’62) Chevrolet Impala. Finding an original, non-restored, top engine equipped ’63 Impala would be an amazing discovery and this car purports to be just such an example…or is it? Quite possibly, but a closer look is in order. Found in Warrensville, Illinois, this big Chevy is available, here on Facebook Marketplace for $35,000. Tim P. gets the credit for this find!

Let’s parse some numbers!

  • Total 1963 Chevrolet production: 2.2 M
  • Total 1963 Impala production: 832K
  • Total 1963 production w/409 engine: 16K*

*All three 409 engine varieties

As for the 409 engine, there was more than just one variety – more on that to follow. As for the car itself, it’s a standard Impala two-door hardtop (one of 399K) but it’s not a Super Sport (SS) edition, at least there’s no claim and the badging doesn’t indicate as much. The body is straight and the trim is mostly complete though I’m not too sure about that two-tone paint job – it seems to have been haphazardly applied. The only obvious detraction, at least that I can spy, is the missing front license plate filler panel.

The item that caught my attention, secondly, is the interior. It is a bucket seat-equipped model but that’s not correct for a non-SS Impala – it should be a bench. Swapped for buckets? Probably, but it makes me wonder. There is a console between the seats but it doesn’t look as if it extends up to the shifter cut-out, so that’s another question. And that shifter is not correct for a ’63 Impala but those are often traded for a smoother unit that doesn’t hang up as easily as the originals had a tendency to do. Back to those bucket seats, I can’t tell if they are correct for ’63 but they definitely will require some upholstery work. The carpet is missing, and the bare floors are exposed, which is good – what lies under is rusty but they don’t appear, at least with what’s revealed, to have become perforated. Nice to see is the original style tachometer. I believe they are being reproduced now but for years, an original was a tough item to source.

OK, engine time, three different 409s were available in ’63, two with single four-barrel carburetors, cranking out 340 or 400 gross HP, and then the top shelf 425 HP version, fed by two four-barrel carbs. That’s what this car appears to possess but I would recommend that anyone who is interested in this Impala verify the engine’s alpha code to make an accurate assessment – these just don’t turn up that often in non-restored condition. The seller claims that the engine “runs great”!

If this Chevy is all that it purports to be, it’s a great find and it is certainly in restorable condition. The devil is always in the details of course, so a deep dive would be warranted but I imagine this one is that occasional, rare discovery, wouldn’t you agree?

Auctions Ending Soon

Comments

  1. SteveG

    Research, research, research!

    Like 9
    • Bert Kanne

      Needs lots of research to determine if this car was a 409 dual four barrel when new. Then determine if this is that cars original engine block, etc

      Like 1
  2. Johnny Cuda

    My brother had a 409 in a 64 Impala convertible when I was in high school in 1976-77. I did zero to sixty in first gear one day pulling out of the high school, and it was only a few years ago that I told him that!

    Like 21
    • MOPAR Joe

      It’s OK as the car is long gone and eaten by the Massachusetts tin worms.

      Like 3
      • Johnny Cuda

        Thanks Joe. (Yes, he really is my brother!). But maybe, just maybe, that 409 is still around somewhere. Just look for the welded block!

        Like 4
    • Donnie L Sears

      I used to do that all the time with a GTS Dodge Dart I had. sixty in 1st gear then shift to 4th gear.

      Like 1
  3. Keith M Howard

    I have a 1963 409 with twin 4 barrels. That’s the motor chevy bored .060 over, added the twins with a hefty cam. This is the motor they got in trouble with at the track. Hot Rod magazine in 63 did a big write up on. The one I have had to bore another .010 bringing to .070 over, added the thumper comp cam and 10:1 pistons with twin 600’s edelbrocks. It has 230 lbs of pressure per cylinder.
    For being a big block the RPMs rack up very fast. It’s awesome.

    Like 8
    • LarryMember

      The 409 has a 3.50 stroke, so it revs more like a small block.
      With today’s hi tech valve trains available, they make good power, and they sound awesome with 2×4’s.

      Like 6
    • Keith

      Factory bore is 4.312 with a 3.50 stroke.
      The one that I have is .070 over, that makes it 4.382 with the 3.50 stroke.
      If you do the math, bore x bore x pi x 8 = 482 Cid. I have beaten two SRT’s, three mustang gt’s.
      I love it !!!

      Like 8
      • Donnie L Sears

        How expensive are pistons or heads for a 409. The heads never had a combustion chamber that I know of. The pistons were notched for the valves. That seemed strange to most people.

        Like 4
      • Keith

        Wish there was a way to attach pics to the replies. Because there are pics of the build.

        Like 1
      • Jesse Jesse MortensenStaff

        For safety reasons, only members can upload photos. Here’s more info: https://barnfinds.com/membership/monthly/

        Like 1
  4. Johnmloghry johnmloghry

    Besides research a lot of elbo grease is needed here, but wouldn’t it be great if this turned out to authentic. I was 16 in 63 and could only dream of such machines. Every manufacturer had great and fast cars for sale to the lucky buyers. For me these were near perfect in triple black convertible form. I would occasionally see one slowly cruising through my home town with the 25 mph speed clearly posted on every intersection. In those days young buyers wanted big engines and 4 speed transmissions, all other options only considered after drivetrain was ordered. Of course now days insurance keeps most buyers from ordering fast cars, unless you happen to be one of the wealthy few.

    God Bless America

    Like 5
  5. Bunky

    My brother in law bought a ‘64 Impala SS 409/4 speed car new. With the skinny factory tires, and Seattle’s perennially wet streets, it was pretty much an elephant on roller skates. He pretty much immediately regretted buying it. The straw that broke the camel’s back was when a Beetle left him at the light spinning his wheels. He traded it in for a ‘65 Corvair Monza for his Dad- and bought a ‘56 VW. Then a ‘66 Porsche 912.

    Like 3
  6. ChasMan

    The seller writes ,”don’t bother me unless your serious no trades either “.
    $35k and don’t bother me?

    Like 9
    • Keith

      I don’t blame him at all.. If I had it, it would be mine.

      Like 2
  7. Mark

    In the 80s a friend approached me having several 409s for sale. My response was, I don’t need any boat anchors.

    Like 6
  8. Kirk M Stankiewicz

    Junior Johnson had a love-hate relationship with these- either he won the race or it blew up-

    Like 1
  9. John M Stecz

    I owned a 1963 triple black convertible Impala SS when I was twenty years old. It was a true SS duel quad 409 and it had bucket seats and a consul . Wish I still had it. Traded it for a 1966 GTO,and lost my license for street racing etc. Wish I still had that 409. This is not a BS story it’s true

    Like 8
  10. John M.Stecz

    Those look like the factory bucket seats that I had in mine and it was an SS

    Like 1
  11. ACZ

    Wow! Two ’09s in the same day.

    Like 1
  12. CRUSTY

    In the 80s Had 5 original cars 1963 dual quad 4speed convertible 1965 340hp auto also 11 extra motors and parts . Wish I still had !!!

    Like 5

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