From rappers to cops to grandparents and everyone in between, there aren’t many cars that have experienced a nearly universal acceptance like the Chevrolet Impala. In 1958, to celebrate its 50th year of production, Chevrolet released anniversary models for each of their brands; the Cadillac Eldorado Seville, Buick Roadmaster Riviera, Oldsmobile Super 88 Holiday, Pontiac Bonneville Catalina, and of course the Chevrolet Bel-Air Impala. Just like many of Chevy’s famous brands, the Impala got its start as a trim option for another car. The following year the Impala broke away from the Bel-Air to become its own model and right away became Chevrolet's best-selling car, moving a reported 473,000 units! The early ’60s saw the first “Super Sport” badge on an Impala, a true focus on performance and what many consider the first true to form muscle car ever. By the end of the decade, the competition was stiff within the company and Chevrolet really had the SuperSport formula figured out. A grand total of 1,178 Impalas were created in 1968 with the SS 427 package. The RPO Z24 SS 427 option included the RPO Z03 Impala SS features such as all-vinyl Strato-Bucket front seats, centre console and SS wheel covers, along with either a 385-hp or a 425-hp big-block. This very special and uniquely ordered Sport Coupe is an all-original example with 50,304 miles and ordered without the Z03 production option. It has a centre console delete, a comfortable bench-style seat replacing the bucket seating, with the Muncie four-speed shifter and no supersport badges anywhere...a true sleeper!
This 1968 Impala Sport Coupe sits right in the middle of the 4th generation production run, the era considered by many as the last great Impalas ever made. At the time of its release, it was a graceful and futuristic design fitted onto a large body coupe. The long sweeping fastback and iconic exaggerated wheel arches went on to influence an entire era of automotive design and the absence of the excessive “SS” badging gives your eye a chance to focus on the beautiful design rather than get distracted by a name. Having undergone a complete restoration and being driven very little since means this car is also presented in an unrivalled, immaculate condition which adds to the allure of this rare machine.
Understated and functional, spacious and old school the Parchment coloured vinyl seating over black carpeting is a great visual complement to the Matador Red exterior and is so indicative of the era it comes from. With beautiful simplicity, cars like this Impala take you back to an era when driving was a complete sensory experience. Simply equipped with heat, ac and radio the cockpit keeps you very comfortable while still allowing you to focus on the driving experience.
The engine is a matching numbers L72 427 capable of 425 horsepower, and the rear end is a 4.56:1 axle. As you will surely notice from the photos, this is a completely restored numbers-matching L72 Impala 2-dr Sport Coupe. The fire-breathing, 425HP 427 Big Block L72 engine was, back in 1968, available in any full-size Chevy even if it was not listed in the official brochures. Those in the know ordered this engine in a no-frills package, such as this example, which was well-kept and completely refurbished a few years ago and hardly driven since
Not only does the Impala hold the title of the first muscle car produced, but it has also gone down in history as one of the most iconic vehicles produced by the talented minds at Chevrolet and in the world of Impalas, this particular vehicle stands in rarified company. While it's difficult to determine exactly how many Impalas in this specification are on the road today, you can rest assured you will have to travel far and wide before you see another one like it. This 1968 Impala is rarely optioned sleeper from an iconic lineage of American performance vehicles.