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Coachwork by LeBaron

1931 Chrysler Imperial CG Convertible Coupe

  • 1 of only 10 known examples
  • Best in Class at the 2020 Boca Raton Concours d'Elegance
  • Nut-and-bolt concours restoration completed in 2008
  • Single enthusiast ownership for 53 years
  • One of the most beautiful models of the Classic Era

VIN: 7800595

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The automobile comes in all sizes and shapes but, at the height of the Classic Era of the 1930s, the road was ruled by some of the largest and grandest cars ever made. This was the time when great names like Stutz, Marmon, Pierce-Arrow, Peerless, Packard, and Duesenberg ruled the road in phaetons, luxurious town cars, dashing roadsters, and sleek convertible coupes. Beautiful factory and coach-built bodies were the order of the day and they were loaded with lots of chrome and fine woodwork. Nestled comfortably within these ranks was the Imperial from Chrysler. Large, richly appointed, supremely elegant, and powerful are just a few words that describe these cars as their imposing size was more than enough to announce one's arrival at a social event.

Originally introduced in 1916, the Imperial had reached what many would say was its peak in 1931 and 1932. While several models were offered, it was the CG Imperial that was the flagship of the fleet. Chrysler's spectacular new motorcar sat atop a massive 145-inch wheelbase chassis, while the body styling featured a distinctly low-slung and rakish appearance. Walter Chrysler and K.T. Keller used the radical Cord L-29 as a benchmark for style, going as far as to hire L-29 designer Alan Leamy away from Cord to help style the Imperial.

This 1931 Imperial CG Convertible Coupe by LeBaron is believed to be 1 of just 10 of its kind built and is wonderfully restored to concours condition. With a massive 145-inch wheelbase chassis, the gorgeous LeBaron styling captures the essence of Chrysler's vision for the long, low, and sleek Imperial. This example was under single ownership from 1967 to 2020 and is being offered for only the second time in over 50 years. Part of an extensive collection of Classic Era automobiles, this Chrysler benefits from a nut-and-bolt, concours quality restoration that was completed in 2008. It presents in gorgeous maroon with subtle red coach lines, with chrome wire wheels and wide whitewalls enhancing the sporting elegance of the body. The bold, deep-vee radiator with horizontal chrome slats is topped with the Gazelle mascot. Other accessories include dual side-mount spare wheels with chrome cowl lights and a body-colored trunk fitted to a factory trunk rack. The presentation is stunning, with outstanding paint and excellent brightwork and detailing throughout.

At the heart of the CG Imperial is Chrysler's "Silverdome" Eight, displacing 384.8 cubic inches and 125 horsepower. In this car, a slightly later CL-series engine is fitted, which essentially is of the same displacement and output as the CG engine. A smooth-shifting four-speed manual with granny low backs the engine. Being well-engineered and well-constructed, it imparted the Imperial with the outstanding road manners for which they are well known. The engine is finely detailed with its bright silver head, topped with chrome hardware and fasteners, befitting of a concours-restored car.

After the restoration was completed, this example was invited to the 2009 Meadowbrook Concours. A true testament to the quality of the restoration, this Imperial was displayed at the 2019 Greenwich Concours and would capture a Best in Class award at the 2020 Boca Raton Concours d'Elegance.

Today's collectors consider the CG Imperial to be one of the most beautiful cars of the Classic Era, and certainly one of the prettiest Chryslers ever produced. They are also a favorite among enthusiasts who prefer to drive their vehicles as intended, thanks to the robust straight-line performance and rewarding road manners. Thanks to its body-off-the-frame restoration and fastidious collector care, this 1 of only 10 Imperial CG is a beautifully presented example and arguably one of the most eye-catching offerings from the Classic Era.

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