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.
For 1932 and 1933, the CG chassis was further refined to become the CL Imperial. By 1933, styling was enhanced with a more imposing front view and a sharply pointed grille that blended into a long, impressive hood, gained by overlapping the cowl. The car's dramatic belt line swooped down along the body, creating a design that many believe was the best-looking Imperial of all. Though there were a number of customs executed by other coachbuilding firms, LeBaron accounted for the vast majority of bodies on the Imperial CL chassis.
In total, 50 Dual Windshield Phaeton bodies were ordered by Chrysler from LeBaron in 1932. Fourteen were shipped in 1932, although a few of these are believed to have been returned to the factory for updating with 1933 sheet metal and trim.
Update / corrections: [thank you Dan P.!]
The 1931 Custom Imperial phaeton shown is a model CG, dual cowl.
The 1932-33 Custom Imperial phaetons were CL (1932) and CL* (1933). Neither models were dual cowl. Instead, they are dual windshield phaetons.
One 1933 CL* coupe was rebodied with a 1931 CG dual cowl body by Marjorie Merriweather Post and it still survives.
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
We use Coachbuild.com almost daily as our main reference source!
- Schloss Dyck Classic Days
We use Coachbuild.com all the time for references!
- Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance
We are very impressed by your website!
- Bicester Heritage UK