All-Original 1966 Chevrolet Impala Ss Is An Iconic Model Fighting For Glory


Chevy Impala had a tremendous year in 1965. The Chevrolet Impala set sales records and was the best-selling vehicle in the United States seven years after its official debut and nine years after it grinned in front of the audience as a concept.

The Impala was the first nameplate to reach that milestone after World War II thanks to the GM brand’s sales of more than 1 million units in this country. For ardent Chevrolet supporters, the accomplishment made perfect sense. Since 1958, when the Impala made its debut as a Bel Air variant, the vehicle has seen substantial yearly revisions. With each new model, Chevrolet made an effort to maintain the Impala current and stylish while putting more of an emphasis on the vehicle’s performance.

The debut of the SS in 1961 helped Impala increase its customer appeal, especially for customers interested in a sportier experience.

In 1963, Chevrolet reached another historic achievement. The company produced its 50 millionth vehicle, and to celebrate the moment, it invited New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller to drive an Impala SS out of the factory.

The sales record achieved in 1965 generated new expectations that Impala failed to reach. 1966 already produced the first decline, and one of the reasons was a questionable strategy regarding Caprice. Chevrolet tried to make the Caprice a superstar using the same approach it used for the Impala. The car launched in 1965 as an Impala version, and one year later, it promoted the nameplate to a standalone series.

Things didn’t go exactly as planned. Impala took everybody by surprise in 1958 when it debuted as a Bel Air version, so when it graduated to a full series a year later, its sales went through the roof. Caprice had a different fate. Not only it failed to meet expectations, but it also produced a sales drop in the Impala lineup.

Chevrolet desired that the 1966 Impala maintain its successful engine lineup from the prior years. The entry-level 250 six-cylinder engine produced 155 horsepower, while the base 283 (4.7-liter) engine for the V8 series produced 195 horsepower. The 427 (7.0-liter) was Chevrolet’s huge surprise for this model year. The 327 (5.3-liter) and 396 V8s acted as more potent improvements.


With a maximum power rating of 425 horsepower, the 427 was the icing on the cake, especially on an SS.

This 1966 Impala SS is a bit more boring regarding the engine under the hood, as it doesn’t feature this almighty V8. On the other hand, the original 327 in the car is still potent enough to get you from where you are to where you want to be without experiencing the lazy six-cylinder vibe.
Twotonboxer does not provide too many specifics on the engine, but I wouldn’t expect it to work. The car looks like a project that’s been sitting for many years, likely under a cover, so the engine is unlikely to come in tip-top shape.

The whole car aligns with this general condition, as it seems to require the typical work for a 60-year-old classic car. The body doesn’t look that bad, though, and despite the patina, the rust doesn’t seem like it managed to go through the surface. A repaint is needed, especially if the new owner wants to return the Impala to factory specifications. The blue-on-blue convertible still flexes a nice-looking interior, though serious work is needed in this case too.

It’s not surprising that the undersides require extra care. Major rust issues are frequently present in cars that have been sitting for a long time, and the undersides are frequently the first areas to suffer. It claims that the floors and trunk need repair, but it’s not clear if simple patches will suffice or if the owner will need new panels.

This 1966 Impala SS is a good illustration of the kind of vintage vehicle that collectors usually lust after. Finding a 1966 Impala is not difficult, but it is uncommon to find one with an original engine and in good condition. This Impala SS’s top is obviously already damaged, but given the way the car is built as a whole, this makes perfect sense.