Chrysler entered the fine car market by offering a more affordable luxury car with beautiful styling and performance to match. The result was the incomparable Imperial series. With their long wheelbase chassis, flowing fenders, and smart LeBaron-designed bodies, many consider the Imperials to be among the best looking classics of the era. Although their chassis and drive train technology was rather conventional, with 135 horsepower they were certainly quick.
The remarkable styling of the majority of the CG series Imperials was the work of LeBaron. Probably the most striking design in existence at the time was the Cord L29, styled by Al Leamy, so when Chrysler hired Leamy to design the Imperial, it is not surprising that the cars would bear some resemblance to it. Like the L29, the CG was long and low, featuring gracefully swept fenders and a vee-shaped radiator. With a remarkable 145-inch wheelbase, the CG chassis - Chrysler's longest ever - provided the room to allow designers to craft bodies with superb proportions. LeBaron improved on the design with a longer hood, a swept back grille and a more elegant side treatment.
The Imperial's powerful engine, when combined with the lightweight two passenger coachwork of the roadster, created one of the fastest cars money could buy. Though there were a number of customs executed by other coachbuilding firms, LeBaron accounted for the vast majority of bodies on the Imperial Custom Line chassis.
I am not a natural flatterer, I like to think that I "tell it like it is", politely I hope. So when I tell you that I am very impressed by the contents of your website, it is just not English politeness. I of course love the subject matter but you deal with it in an energetic and respectful manner. I am overwhelmed by the research that has gone into compiling the list of coachbuilders/bodybuilders for Europe and North America. I have never heard of the vast majority of them.
Congratulations on an excellent website.
- N. Maltby of Car Scene International
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