Running Project: 1963 Chevrolet Impala SS 409

Disclosure: This site may receive compensation from some link clicks and purchases.

One of the hottest cars you could buy in 1963 with the Chevy Impala with the Super Sport option and a 409 cubic inch V8. That engine was only in production for five years (1961 to 1965) but has become iconic with collectors and even inspired a Beach Boys song (“She’s So Fine, My 409”). This 1963 Impala is a true SS 409, but it’s been in a warehouse since 1980 and does run but needs a lot of work. Our appreciation goes to TJ. for this cool tip!

In 1963, the Super Sport was an appearance option, not a performance one. With bucket seats and loads of identification, the SS could be ordered with any Chevy engine, even an inline-6. But most buyers went with a V8, including 16,900 with the 409 V8 (though that number isn’t specific to the SS as you could get one in a lowly Biscayne if you wanted). There were three horsepower versions of the 409 you could choose from, ranging from 340 to 425 (with 400 in the middle). No wonder the Beach Boys loved these engines!

The seller’s SS 409 is a matching-numbers car and would be even more cool if it had a 4-speed manual transmission. But, alas, it came with a 2-speed Powerglide that may need some work to go into gear. The vehicle has been in a warehouse for 44 years and was untouched until recently. We’re told it will run around the lot, but it’s going to need brakes, a transmission service, and a small leak in the radiator repaired – at a minimum.

Some degree of documentation will come with the car. It’s numbers matching and includes a Posi-Traction rear end (was the needed with a Powerglide?). The odometer reads 91,000 miles and that’s probably legit. The body has rust in some of the extremities and the two-tone paint is beyond saving. The interior looks good, but the door panels will need some attention. Most of the trim was removed, but what hasn’t been re-hung by the seller is in the trunk.

These cars were in demand in 1963. Out of 832,000 Impalas built, 153,000 had SS badging, so they were hardly scarce when new. But today, they’re harder to come by thanks to attrition. No one thought these would be valuable items one day, so most ended up in the junkyard when used up. The seller says he/she has more photos and videos, and we hope that includes the engine because that’s a big selling point for the car and isn’t in the listing here on craigslist. No trades will be considered and the asking price is $22,900 in Denver, Colorado.

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. sparkster

    Expensive engine , body is junk , interior rotten . Yet not one picture of the engine bay ? ? ? And an automatic as well. Correct me if I’m wrong as my college roommate had a 194 SS409 with factory dash tach. I don’t see the tach on the dash ? Perhaps it was a four speed option only ?

    Like 5
    • Larry D*

      The tach was included with the 4 speed trans. I don’t know if it was available as a stand alone otherwise.

      Like 2
  2. Jerry

    “She’s REAL fine, my 409.” Sorry but I’m an old Beach Boy fan.

    Like 6
    • Johnny Cuda

      Good catch Jerry. You beat me to it. I am also a huge Beach Boys fan.

      Like 3
  3. Lakota

    Selling a car with the whole selling point and the high price being the engine. But can not supply a single picture of the engine that in itself is a huge red flag.

    Like 14
  4. KurtMember

    Favorite old school lowrider.

    Like 6
  5. OldNSlo

    Slip n slide powerglide

    Like 3
  6. HCMember

    Price is too high for an Impala SS in this condition. No engine pics is just stupid. You can get one in restored condition for $25- $27k so why would you pay $22k for one needing everything? Hard pass

    Like 11
    • Henry DavisMember

      I doubt you could get a restored 409 SS of any year for less than $50K. more like $75 even with a powerglide.

      Like 8
    • Rick

      Restored $25 – $27k ? I’ll have 10 please.

      Like 1
  7. Jim Mulhauser

    Good to have guys like Jerry and Johnny around to keep things authentic…and honest. My very first concert as a budding 14 year old car enthusiast was in 1965 in San Antonio. Yep, you guessed it…The Beach Boys. I remember those red and white striped short sleeved shirts like it was yesterday. “FUN, FUN, FUN!’

    Like 5
    • Henry DavisMember

      “til Daddy took the TBird away!”

      Like 3
  8. dogwater

    Know pictures of the engine didn’t want to disturb the mice

    Like 2
  9. Paul Alexander

    My history teacher (11th grade) had a 63 Biscayne 2-dr. with a 409.. ordered it that way “so she could climb hills easily when on vacation”. Bless her heart! Tis Impala looks too rough to be worth anywhere near $22K.

    Like 9
  10. al

    with the powergilde trans this has to be the smaller 409 with hydraulic lifters and only 340 HP

    Like 4
  11. Wes

    Thats not an original 409 car someone added the 409 emblem and its in the wrong place

    Like 1
    • Henry DavisMember

      Yeah Wes, at least the “0′ in “409” should be centered over the crossed flags.

      Like 2
    • al

      you are rt and if my memory is correct the 409 sign was one piece this sign isn’t the 409 was added on top of a 327 sign I bet this isn’t even a 409 but it’s a 348 that’s why no engine picture the side of engine the dip stick is the on is the difference between the 409 and 348

      Like 3
  12. Charles Jenkins

    Couple of quick comments: the tach only came with the manual gearbox, $22,000 is way too much money for a Powerglide 409 in this bad of shape, you couldn’t touch a restored SS 409 for less than 50 or 60K, and I agree that this being an original SS 409 is highly suspect. This is one my favorite cars of all time. I begged my mother to co-sign for a black 425 horse 4 speed in ’66 when I was 16, but luckily she refused. I can nearly guarantee you that I would not be writing this today had she agreed.

    Like 2
  13. Heck DodsonMember

    The main thing of real value in this supposed 409 is its engine and seller provided no engine pics. Hard to figure.I’m sure one in better shape may be worth this price, but not this one. I restored and sold a 64 SS Impala with a matching numbers engine for not alot more than what the seller is asking for this one, just a few years ago. Im sure original and restored 409s will sell in the range of $35-$55 to the right buyer, and pretty sure the seller will be lucky to break even on his investment.

    Like 3
    • john atanasio

      that is exactly what I was thinking.with labor costs and paint today it’ll cost more to have it redone than what you will get for it afterward especially if you can’t do the work why would you want to pay that kind of money for some thing that you most likely end up losing money’s a bad investment in my book.

      Like 1
      • Henry DavisMember

        There are more reasons for buying an old car than “investment potential”.

        Like 3
  14. ACZ

    Too much for too little.

    Like 1
  15. Charles Jenkins

    I think that the 409 flag’s on the ’63s were two pieces, but I believe that the 63 and 64 425 horse motors had one piece flag’s on the air cleaner. (Full disclosure, I may be mistaken as that was 60 years ago.)

    Like 1
  16. HCMember

    The 64 Impala SS with a matching 327, I rebuilt/restored a few years ago was pretty involved let me tell you. And I kept all receipts. Yes, its more than just an investment. There is alot of passion involved in the journey, but with rising costs there’s nothing wrong with trying to not lose money when you do sell it. Starting at this price and condition, you’re immediately underwater. I was lucky to at least break even, and really enjoy the process.

    Like 1
  17. sparkster

    I emailed the “owner” his response was
    Text me at 720-219-0660 and can send you some videos and more pictures

    I will include the block numbers, vin and the original window sticker

    Not sure why his ad wouldn’t include those items Still too much money

    Like 0
  18. Charles Jenkins

    Sparkster: I’m of like mind re: the lack of photos and documentation in the original ad. There is something a little strange going on with this car.

    Like 0

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks.

Become a member to add images to your comments.


Get new comment updates via email. Or subscribe without commenting.

Barn Finds