15 Years In The Barn: 1963 Chevrolet Impala SS

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An enthusiast can begin a classic restoration project only to find they have bitten off more than they can chew. They could decide to chew harder, although some will elect to bundle up their pride and joy and despatch it to a new owner. Neither scenario seems likely with this 1963 Chevrolet Impala SS. It isn’t perfect, but none of its shortcomings should cause its new owner nightmares. It runs and drives, meaning the winning bidder could indulge in immediate enjoyment while assessing its restoration priorities. The Impala is listed here on eBay in Greenville, South Carolina. Bidding sits below the reserve at $21,600, although readers have nearly a week to decide whether they wish to join the party with this classic.

I admire a candid approach from any seller because it generally means potential buyers are unlikely to bid on a classic with hidden nasty surprises. Such is the case with this Impala because although its Tuxedo Black paint shines nicely, the seller admits that fifteen years spent in the barn leave it needing a repaint. They say it has rust in the trunk pan, suggesting replacement would be the best approach. Beyond those problems, the news appears positive. Black paint is perfect for exposing bumps and bruises, but this SS looks remarkably straight. The panel gaps are consistent, and there are no signs of exterior rust or prior accident repairs. The trim looks excellent, and there are no glass issues. The Red steel wheels offer a welcome contrast to the dark appearance, with the SS “spinner” hubcaps providing the perfect finishing touch.

It is common to find cars from this era with interiors loaded with aftermarket additions, but this Impala avoided that fate. It looks incredibly comfortable and classy with its Black vinyl seatcovers and center console. The seats look excellent, as does the headliner. There are shortcomings to consider, meaning the buyer will need to splash their cash inside this classic. Replacements for the damaged door panels will cost approximately $550, with a carpet set adding a further $220. With a dash pad costing $480, this interior could look stunning for around $1,250. Those who enjoy touches of luxury will welcome the original AM radio and “Comforttilt” wheel.

SS buyers in 1963 could choose from a vast selection of engines depending on whether they craved mild or wild performance levels. Powering this Impala is a 283ci V8 that sends 185hp to the rear wheels via a four-speed manual transmission. The original owner ordered the car with power steering but no power brakes. Considering its dimensions and ability to seat five adults comfortably, the SS tips the scales at a surprisingly low 3,545 lbs. Therefore, the ¼-mile ET of 17.1 seconds should satisfy most potential buyers. It is unclear whether this Impala is numbers-matching, but that appears to be the only unknown with this beauty. It runs and drives well, making it a turnkey classic needing nothing but a new owner before it hits the road.

This 1963 Impala SS could be a perfect candidate for someone considering a first restoration project. None of its issues are urgent, allowing time for the new owner to assemble the cash and parts required to transform a desirable classic into a genuine head-turner. With summer fast approaching, hitting the road for immediate enjoyment is tempting, and this Impala makes that temptation a reality. A faithful restoration would seem logical, although some may see a custom build on the horizon. If you were the winning bidder, which would you choose?

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  1. Danny B

    I would upgrade the brakes spruce up the interior and drive this beauty just the way it was intended to.

    Like 9
  2. Tony

    Leave the car stock looking, I would consider painting the roof ermine white to break up the black, slowly redo interior, engine compartment and any other issues as needed during the winter months, enjoy driving it and go to car shows during good weather months. Love this car , would be very proud to own this, real beauty. ( I own a ‘64 Bel Air all stock meadow green with ermine white roof painted from the factory, it breaks up all the meadow green paint ) Congratulations to future owner.

    Like 5
  3. Chris Cornetto

    It amazes me how many of these are still around but then I think you have had some of yours 40 years. These are workhorses that if cared for through routine maintenance just work and ask for little in return. Rust was the big enemy and in recent years, theft. Nice one here that will make its next caretaker happy.

    Like 5
    • Billyray

      Even when they were not that old theft was a big enemy. Back in ’69 when I had one, It was the most stolen car in the U.S. Mine was stolen 3 times in ONE year!

      Like 4
  4. Bob C.

    I would fix the trunk pan, upgrade brakes, and enjoy it. The interior cosmetics can be fixed over time and paint can be last priority. A 283 4 speed should get pretty decent mileage.

    Like 2
    • Donnie L Sears

      The problem in the trunk pan is most likely the part for the spare tire needs replacing.

      Like 1
  5. timothy r herrod

    Always liked these but never had one, might be time to get one. Oh, thats right I can’t afford one. Good thing looking at them is free

    Like 4
  6. MJWMember

    Just a comment, if the fender emblems are original, then this SS came with a 327. If it was originally a 283, then it would not have the cross flags over the V, only 327 cars came with the cross flags and V, unless it was a 409 car, then it would have 409 above the cross flags.

    Like 7
    • Russ

      Correct. I had a 1963 Impala Sport Coupe, 327/250hp, 3 on the tree, posi. Great car but rust was getting it.

      Like 1
      • Michael Hutt

        The front bucket seats are wrong for a 63 and dont match the rear seat, the rear is correct. Also the headliner shows water stains on the back on both sides. Someone has added a knob below the dash under the steering wheel.

        Like 1
    • John S Dressler

      Absolutely, MJW. That’s why one of the first things I would do is put a chesty little 327 in it. Power disc brakes, white wall tires for some additional contrast, fix the interior shortcomings and you would have a sweet driving machine. Mine was a white rag top with red interior. Loved it.

      Like 1
    • Chuck Dickinson

      MJW is correct, and additionally, a 4 spd was NA on 283 Impalas. 327/250hp is the ‘smallest’ engine on which a 4 spd could be ordered. It’s surprising someone would replace a 327 w/a 283. Usually it goes the other way!

      Like 4
  7. ACZ

    I’m in love with this car! I had a 63 Impala coupe in the mid 70s. A real sweetheart but I had to sell it due to a job relocation and transfer. I wish, again and again, I had kept it.

    Like 1
  8. Jackie Hollingsworth

    I love everything about the 1963 Impalas…..They look great.

    Like 4
  9. Nelson W. Rayder

    I loved the 300hp 327 it made the 63 and 64 impala run like a scalded dog.

    Like 1
  10. 64 Bonneville

    IMHO the 63 was the best, looking design for the 1960-1969 Chevy. A guy who lived down the street from us had a 63 Impala 2 door hardtop, 327, 300HP, 4 speed, with the tach on the steering column. a deep burgundy color with black cloth bench seat interior. He loved that car., bought it brand new in November of 1962. Was the newest car in the neighborhood. 2nd newest was a 59 Chevy station wagon, hey, it was a blue collar neighborhood. always wanted a 63 Impala after I saw that one, still do, but age and funds keep it from happening.

    Like 3
  11. Bing

    409 clone candidate.

    Like 1
  12. oldsquid

    Kinda nice to see two reasonably priced 4 speed cars on the site. I’m thinking those buckets are of 65/66 vintage, not that that matters as it wouldn’t take much to find the correct ones for this car. Everything else about this car is spot on, if we’re doing the daydream approach to this for me all I’d do is proper air cleaner/hoses/detail under the hood, set of Halibrand big and littles, new shifter bushings, and two of those green tree air fresheners on the e brake handle, then drive the wheels off of it. Anyone says they’d put foam dice in it should be banned from the site…… ;)

    Like 0

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