Original 409/4 Speed: 1963 Chevrolet Impala SS

This 1963 Chevrolet Impala SS is almost too spectacular for words. Its condition is incredible for a vehicle of this age, and the fact that it is a numbers-matching survivor with a 409ci V8 under the hood adds to the attraction. It is easy to see why Barn Finders Pat L and MattR both spotted it for us. Thank you so much for that, because this is a car that it is a privilege to write about. All good things must come to an end, so the owner has decided to part with the Impala. It is located in Nipomo, California, and has been listed for sale here on Craigslist. If you hand the owner $37,900, you can drive away in this stunning classic.

The Impala isn’t completely original because the owner does admit that it has received one repaint in its original Ember Red. It isn’t clear when the work was performed, but it has held up exceptionally well. There is nothing to fault here because the paint shows no apparent signs of significant marks, and it shines beautifully. The panels are laser straight, and the car is claimed to be 100% rust-free. I find this claim easy to believe because when you look across every aspect of the vehicle, it is difficult to find so much as a spot of surface corrosion. The beauty continues when you look at the trim and chrome because it sparkles as impressively as the paint. I can’t spot any flaws with the glass, while the magnificent hubcaps show no signs of damage or staining. In case you hadn’t noticed, I really do like the look of this classic.

Opening the door and sliding behind the wheel continues the trend towards faultless presentation. There is some wrinkling of the Red upholstery on the driver’s seat, but I believe this is acceptable on a car of this age. That’s about all there is to be critical of because there are no signs of any other trim issues, while the carpet, console, and dash all appear to be flawless. When you look at the rear seat, it seems like no-one has ever used it. There have been no aftermarket additions inside the Impala, which means that the original AM radio remains in situ. One excellent feature is the factory tachometer mounted above the steering column on the dash. There is little doubt that Chevrolet saw this gauge as a priority, so they mounted it where it was clearly visible to the driver.

Okay, I know that you’ve been waiting patiently for it, so there is the numbers-matching 409ci V8. This engine should be pumping out 340hp, which finds its way to the rear wheels via a 4-speed manual transmission. This car is all about the purity of the driving experience, which means that it features no power assistance for the steering or brakes. At 3,790lbs, the SS is not the lightest car on the planet. That makes the 15.3-second ¼-mile ET all the more impressive. The owner says that the Chevy has a genuine 52,000 miles on the clock. He doesn’t mention whether he holds evidence to verify this, but he claims that it has accrued a mere 11,000 miles since 1986. It seems that he really hasn’t made much of an effort to wear out this baby, but that’s no bad thing. I am quite surprised that he doesn’t provide any information on how well the Impala runs or drives. However, if appearances count for anything, it should drive about as well as it did back in 1963.

This 1963 Impala SS has the “wow” factor in abundance, and it is easy to see why it caught the attention of our enthusiastic Barn Finders. It presents superbly, and I can only imagine the admiring looks and comments that it would attract at any car show or Cars & Coffee. It is a car that needs nothing but a new owner who is willing to treat it with the care and respect it appears to have received for the past 58-years. It has been on the market for less than a day, and I wouldn’t be surprised if someone snaps it up pretty quickly.

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Comments

  1. Rustytech Member

    I’m drooling! Got to get out of here before I blow my retirement savings!

    Like 20
    • Steve R

      Too late, it’s already gone.

      Steve R

      Like 9
      • angliagt angliagt Member

        How long ’till it shows up on eBay,
        for a much higher price?

        Like 4
      • Stan Marks

        Because a vehicle is taken off of Craigslist, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s sold. Usually it’ll still be there, with a “SOLD” sign on the pic. Maybe the seller had seller’s remorse.
        LOL!! Who knows??

      • Stan Marks

        Because a vehicle is taken off of Craigslist, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s sold. Most of the time it’ll still be there, with a “SOLD” sign on the pic.

        Like 1
  2. JTHapp

    “See the USA in your Chevrolet!”

    Close to something out of one those Chevy ads!

    Stunning!

    Like 8
  3. irocrobb

    A great deal on a beautiful car. I feel sorry for people that buy a rusty,trashed one and pour tons of time,effort and money into it when there is still the odd great example like this around. All my dealings in almost 50 years has told me, buy the best that you can afford.What a fantastic example

    Like 22
    • Kevin

      How right you are,I’m in my fifties, and jalopy projects don’t excite me anymore, this is a sweet ride!

      Like 2
  4. DSteele

    Wow I love these cars

    Like 6
  5. Howard A Member

    Sure was a nice one. Probably the nicest car averagely employed Joe( or Jolene) could buy. It seems, popular music culture had a lot to do with how a car was ordered. The “409/4 speed” just screams West coast due to a certain musical infatuation with that setup at the time. In the Badger, there were plenty of ’63 Chevy’s, but not many like this, and certainly, no 409/4 speeds. Most were just run of the mill 283’s, once in a while, someone would sport for the 327, and all Powerglides, but they were everyday servants, doing menial jobs, not street racing at every corner, or at least how Hollywood depicted it, and I bet people ordered “409/4 speeds”, just to be hip. Oh, that and they didn’t have snow drifts to bust through. Kind of funny, yet sad, I can’t blame someone for wanting to spend this amount that they clearly have, to relive this era in cars. It was an exciting time, but,,,,let’s call a spade a spade, these were heavy truck motors in a heavy car, with 1963 suspension and brakes that got many in trouble. I suppose the new buyer will find that out, hopefully, not the hard way, like we did.

    Like 11
    • Fred Moran

      Guys guys, calm down. Your looking at a beautiful car but and that’s a big but it is a 340 hp 4 bbl carb . It’s not the real deal . The legend was none other than the 409, 409 hp or the king the 409 dual quad 425 hp. Now that is something to drool about,that was the one and only legend, not the 340 hp model.

  6. Dusty Stalz

    Very nice car but it’s not a survivor. The second you repaint a car that designation goes out the window. Calling cars with rebuilt engines, new interiors or repaints survivors actually hurts the hobby.True car guys understand this and it’s too bad no one on the BF staff does.

    Like 23
    • Rick

      That is correct.

      Like 4
  7. Gordy

    Won’t last long

    Like 2
  8. jose Enciso

    has it sold ? if not,,plzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz email me or call me 206-595-5845
    plzzzz

    Like 1
  9. ACZ

    The epitome.

    Like 1
  10. its1969ok

    Thank goodness there’s no bumper guards, shark fin antenna or fender skirts!

    Like 6
  11. Lawrence Loffredo

    Some Barn Find,,,, Spare me,,

    Like 2
    • rexfox

      Seeing and reading about all types of vehicles, in every level of condition is what makes this site so great.

      Like 13
  12. Francisco

    Rocker moldings are correct on 62 impalas & they look good on that year. But there is a reason Gm left them off of 63-64 models, They do not look right with them.

    Like 5
    • local_sheriff

      Well, those ‘body sill moldings’ were still dealer installed on ’63-’64 Chevs just as they were on ’62 non-Impalas. They were(and are) apparently a very popular upgrade as they’re now being reproduced and marketed for ’61-’64 Chevs.

      Personally I totally agree ’63-’64 look way cleaner without them though

      Like 2
      • Chuck Dickinson

        The rocker moldings were never offered by Chevy as an accy in 63/4, and I NEVER saw a car with them ‘in the day’. I know, because I had a new 64 SS and checked out others I saw, and NONE had the 62 rocker moldings. In later years, after they became a collectible car, and the rocker mldgs were reproduced for 62s, many 63/4 owners have added them, but they are NOT correct for any Chevy except 62s.

        Like 1
      • Chuck Dickinson

        Rocker panels moldings (smooth, stainless steel, not ribbed) were offered as a Chevy accy. from 59-61. In 62 the ribbed ones (aluminum) were standard on Impalas. Not offered after that time.

        Like 1
      • local_sheriff

        Yes,’62 Impala is the only they correctly belong to, but apparently an available dealer add-on for ‘lesser’ ’62s.
        https://www.chevytalk.org/fusionbb/showtopic.php?tid/281643/ . Dealers had access to these moldings and that’d be an easy way to bling up any prospective sale – regardless of correctness for model/ year.

        I’m too young to have seen these Chevs in showrooms, however now and then ’63-’64 Chevs do pop up wearing them, and some of these are seemingly untouched or being in storage for such a long period that it cannot be repops that they’re wearing – Dynacorn claims they started reproducing them in ’84 but what about those cars that have been off the streets since the 70s wearing them? Someone must have put them there when those cars were still in active duty and that ‘someone’ is probably the dealer

  13. Chris Londish Member

    I love this I wonder if he’ll swap a 70 C10🥰

    • Howard A Member

      Doesn’t work that way, pal. Their stuff is ALWAYS more valuable than what you have.

  14. John Ballard

    Suprised no one commented on the alternator instead of a jenny.

    Like 3
    • ACZ

      63 was the first year for an alternator.

      Like 2
  15. JoeNYWF64

    Is that a padless dash? Nothing to crack. Just wipe & wax.
    Was padding was optional?

    Like 2
    • Chuck Dickinson

      Padded dashes became standard in 66 along with w/shield washers, an outside left mirror, and a day/night inside mirror.

      Like 1
    • Howard A Member

      Nothing to crack but you head. Since seat belts were generally unaccepted then and lie crumpled under the seat, if the car even had them, and many found out a padded dash was better than a metal one. As a kid in the 60’s, I remember lots of cars that had metal dashboards, trucks especially, but that was mostly city driving. As more people took to the highway and speeds increased, along with the severity of the crashes, a padded dash became the norm.

      Like 1
      • Stan Marks

        Back in the day, people weren’t used to wearing their seat belts. Either it was an inconvenience, uncomfortable, or down right laziness. Most of all, it wasn’t the law. Of course, many had the mindset of self denial, when it came to accidents,
        After all these years, it’s been proven, seat belts saves lives. Unfortunately, there are still morons, who refuse to wear them.
        Those of you, who still refuse seat belts & are reading this & you’re asking, if I’m calling you a moron, the answer is yes.
        BTW… Hard padded dashes, don’t save lives.

        Like 5
      • JoeNYWF64

        Stan Marks, ironically, when i 1st wore a ’60’s GM lap belt with infinite adjustability & retractible outboard belt, i very quickly got used to it & liked it. & when i later tried driving without it again just for the heck of it, i just did not feel comfortable & never did again!
        An added bonus is the belt keeping you in place on spirited turns.
        On the other hand, the SEPARATE shoulder harnesses
        of the ’60’s was a pain to ALSO use, especially if you ran a lot of errands or try to reach for the glove compartment.
        On ’74’s, i did appreciate the unified lap & inertia shoulder belt allowing movement of the upper body, but i hated the autolocking lap belt – if you inhaled or moved around, the belt could click 1 notch too tite & you had to unbuckle to readjust.
        Interestingly enough, i am convinced the padded dashes of ’60’s cars have more padding & give than dashes on modern cars!
        & most odd of all, the 1st gen camaro has padded interior windshield posts/columns, while the ’74 firebird has no padded metal ones!! Hmmh.

        Like 1
  16. Randy Rossi

    If I had the money, wow beside the 57 Belair,I love the 63 Chevy

  17. Robert May

    I remember an article in an old magazine in the mid 1990’s, Muscle Car maybe(?) that featured a red on red Impala SS w/a 409(?) The car was bought new by a service station owner. The article speculated that the car was so original at the time of the article that it still had the factory oil and filter installed. Wonder if this is the same car?

  18. Stan Marks

    Joe,
    I remember, the 1st seat belts were lap belts only.
    When the should harness was added, I thought it was uncomfortable.
    Then, some cars came out with the automatics belts, that moved on a track.
    I never owned one of those. I called those the lazy man’s belt. LOL!
    When we’re introduced to anything new, there’s a period of adjustment.
    Like you, I’m not comfortable not buckling up. Of course, if you don’t buckle up, you hear the “ding-ding” reminder noise.

    As a side note… When you see or hear about a fatal car crash & it was reported the driver or passenger was thrown from the vehicle, I always comment, I bet they weren’t wearing their seat belts.

    Like 1
    • robert semrad

      Hey, Stan….here’s a long list of morons you can place in your files…..

  19. Stan Marks

    Hey Bob, Are you including yourself, on that list. LOL!!!

    • robert semrad

      Of course, Stan, not just you, because none of us are nearly as smart as we imagine or pretend…..just look back into your life and see all the utterly stupid things you did…..you’re not alone. We just think we’re smart because no one wants to admit we’re actually stupid. Thanks for the clarification…..from one moron to another….thanks!

  20. Jim

    In case you are used to 21st century cars, I doubt this beauty has power steering, power brakes etc. Factory air (I live in Texas) is not visible looking at the interior.

    A friend has one very much like this. Its his baby. But he like me has trouble turning the steering wheel unless moving. The drum brakes dont stop his 409 without a lot of effort and pre planning. No air conditioning and even if it did freon to recharge is unavailable or priced about like a share of Bitcoin stock. That said, I truly love them. The 61-63 Chevy 409s are truly a thing of beauty. Would consider buying it and parking it in the middle of my living room.

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