A chrome exhaust tip wasn’t forgotten either.
Although with the exception of the front end “grille”, this version of the Impala does not really look like the Monte Carlo which was produced during that time as well and considered to be a related model due to their sharing of the same FWD W-Body chassis and architecture. The Monte Carlo was shorter at 196.7″, while the Impala measured in at 200.4″.
Well whatever. They were both ugly, cheap and stoopid. One was a 2-door and the other was a 4-door.
Ah,Er, Are you an auto critic or just a troll? How can the “W” based Impala be “stoopid” given their sales,popularity with police departments, ETC. Best car of all time,No. But “stoopid”, Puhleeze!
They’re common because they’re big and cheap, and GM persists in making them despite a general lack of popular interest. Compared to every other remotely comparable car of the period, they suck.
James, my brother just bought an off lease 14. It’s solid, quiet, rides well, has plenty of room and power and is well built. I agree: nothing “stoopid” about it.
There’s seems to be an attitude that if a platform is more than two years old, it’s a POS, which is nonsense. For me that is an asset, not a demerit.
The W Body represents the sort of cars Chevrolet built it’s reputation on and it’s styling will wear well for many years to come.
Ah, an independent thinker, the owner of this car. Nice to see.
Get rid of that stupid wing and it wouldn’t look so bad.
This would be the perfect Impala for a diehard GM Loyalist suffering B-body withdraw symptoms.
There was a trend some time back for putting a wing on the top trim level, regardless of whether it suited the rest of the car or not. I’m guessing that might be what happened here. Is that a red interior (would be nice) or just a reflection on the windows?
IMHO a wing only belongs as part of a bodykit – certainly not with whitewalls.
I suspect it’s a blanket draped over the back seat.
The wing was intended to make a four-door sedan look “sporty”, and seems to have faded away with the rise of sweeping rooflines and the return of hatchbacks (at least in the subcompact and compact classes).
I wonder where the owner even found those whitewalls.
Whitewalls are not actually as hard to find as you might think, depending on the wheel size. When shopping for replacement tires for my Crown Vic, I had two whitewall options available (three if you count Vogues). Granted I was looking for 205/70R15, and I’m sure this Impala is sporting either 16″ or more likely 17″ wheels, but they’re not extinct yet.
Exactly. The SS version can maybe do a spoiler, maybe. In general, they are just ridiculous. This car would look fine save for the spoiler.
Call me a tradionlist, but I am always a sucker for clean whitewalls on a darker colored car. I see nothing wrong with this car. Some cars don’t look good, but this one works.
Some people bemoan the passing of the whitewall tire (myself included) but this photo is a great example of why they’re not around anymore. One factor certainly has to be how even base vehicles have very wide diameter tires/wheels, leaving little room for the whitewall.
Another is the lack of any kind of chrome side molding or trim. Adding ‘tasteful’ thin, chrome wheel arch and rocker panel moldings would definitely improve the look of the whitewalls on this Impala, as well as losing that idiotic rear wing as another poster mentioned.
Do all that, and it could actually harken a return to the broughamtastic good (or is it bad?) old days.
Yes…get rid of the wing! A coworker of mine has a Camry in a similar color with a wing just like that…ugh!
I thought whitewall tires were relatively hard to find these days?
Obviously not hard enough! 🙂
Cji: My little brother had to special order the ones in his 86 Calais to keep that period look. And in 13″ yet.
Saw a facelift Tempo with them on, a design I loathe, and the WWs really remade the thing. I have yet to figure out why !
Given modern tendencies, I’m surprised nobody has made a new version of the ORIGINAL whitewall…. the pre-1920 natural latex tire. Sort of flesh-colored.
Expensive bicycle tires still have this type of light sidewall. Natural on the side, black on the tread.
This could be sold as the automotive version of vegan grass-fed GMO-free free-range gluten-free organic food.
gumwalls- and when they’re good, they’re gooood. There’s really no environmental benefit to them beyond making the scene prettier for there being a gumwall-shod bike to be seen. They’re still just rubber and nylon/kevlar like the cheapies, only with less total rubber and a higher threadcount for a more supple and efficient (easy) ride. Maybe that most are made in Japan makes their manufacture less likely to be irresponsible with any byproducts?
It would be pretty sweet to have the ride charactistics of my Grand Bois shod bike on any junk old car, although I am a far bigger fan of the look of raised white letter tires on cars. I’ve been trying and failing to find any publication, print or digital, mentioning sidewall suppleness as a selling point on non-racing car tires for some time now. The closest I’ve gotten was on tguk, Clarkson and May briefly mentioned the oe Pirellis on some 80’s Jag as being both communicative and comfortable on common irregular surfaces.
The wing is probably one of those dealer tack on’s. At least we’ve probably seen the last of the faux roadster roof treatment.
Although this may not be my cup of tea, my credo is the owner only has to please himself.
Nope, Florida seems to be a “haven” of sorts for cars with fake convertible roofs. Just this weekend I saw a white Corolla with a tan vinyl roof styled to look like a convertible. Camrys are another favorite for the fake convertible top look.
Yesterday, on Route 3 in New Jersey, a Lexus LS (big flagship sedan I have since lost track of their names) passed me. It had a tan vinyl roof complete with opera lights. I was traumatized!
My ultra conservative mother just HAD to have the luggage rack installed on her ’86 Chevy Celebrity deck lid because the lady down the way had one on her Olds Ciera along with every other single female in Metro Detroit. My guess is they all were gonna pack up and leave together but it never happened. Anyway, I’m just so glad she opted out on the mismatched faux suede convertible top.
I remember Ford mandated that those aftermarket fur tops and “Continental gold trim” packages were NOT to be offered at the dealerships for the Lincoln LS’s.
There’s a difference in “personal taste” and flat-out ghetto fabulous.
I can remember when most tires were whitewalls, back when gas stations stocked and installed tires.
Often wrapped in brown paper. After they found your cars tire size, they would ask, “do you want the white wall on the outside or the inside?”
On modern cars whitewalls tend to make it’s wheels appear to have a larger diameter.
The alloy wheels and whitewalls don’t work together. The trend in car styling since the 1980s and earlier, has been understated luxury. The whitewalls draw attention in a dated way. It’s subjective of course, but you see the gaudiness (by modern standards) they add in the ‘with or without’ comparison below. IMO, the overall look is less busy without them in this application.
As an aside, these whitewalls on a modern car not styled for whitewalls, kind of remind me how for many years some MLB ballplayers would wear white shoes at the All Star Game. You noticed them of course, but not necessarily in a flattering way…
I can relate to what you say about the white shoes but even worse, baseball players are supposed to wear stirrup socks. Most don’t nowadays but the Boston Red Sox wearing full length pants just doesn’t make sense. I like the ww on the Impala.
I can see people’s feelings about the whitewalls. If they are aiming for a individualized retro look on a modern car. Like a PT Cruiser with fake wood. Especially if they remember them fondly.
Yes, I’m not sold on the MLB ‘baggy’ uniform look myself. They are going for a retro look, but it often looks sloppy.
Yeah, the ‘flush’ type alloys with just a few, thick spokes don’t seem to mesh well with the whitewalls. Probably the only alloys that work are those that somewhat simulate wire-wheels. IOW, lots of fine, thin spokes, whether they be ‘true’ spokes or the simulated ones of some aluminum wheels (Lincolns had them, as I vaguely recall).
IMHO, this would look better if those whitewall tires were on wheels that had some kind of tasteful hubcaps mounted instead of those spoked wheels.
And yes, while that spoiler could be bigger/uglier, this car might look better without it.
Did it have a front bench seat too?
Yes, so your babe could sit next to you in her Daisy Dukes while you put the peddle to the metal and showed her what power this thing had. It also had the crotch a/c vents in case either of you got too hot down there.
“It’s gettin’ hot in here, so take off all our clothes……”
Is that a right-hand-drive Citation!?! How…and WHY!?!
For many years I took care of an elderly fellow parishioner widow’s two cars after her husband died. About six years ago she decided her dark blue 1998 Olds Regency 88 needed new tires and asked that they be white walls, because, well, white walls “… look so nice”.
My mechanic had to look around a bit but found a set and mounted them and she was very happy.
The car looked fine with them. I tried to keep them looking nice for her. It’s hard to change when you are in your nineties, a widow, and your world is slowly closing in on you.
Black walls and dog dishes look great now (to me), but in the 50s and 60s, they were called poverty wheels and signaled “low cost stripper here”. Unless it was a Biscayne with the numbers 4_0_9 on the front fender under the Chevy V and crossed flag.
If we rolled up to a poverty wheeled Biscayne that looked like this, we just meekly idled slowly away at the light.
Today, these stripper Biscaynes bring serious money at the fancy auctions.
That, sir, is the epitome of blackwall/wheel combinations – dog-dish steelies, I mean. Sets my heart a-flutter.
The last set of whitewalls I scrubbed on any regular basis were on my grandmother’s ’86 (IIRC) Mercury Marquis, white with dark blue vinyl top. She (willingly) stopped driving in 1999 and asked me to sell the car for her. I think it might have had 25-30K on it at that point.
I think my ’69 F-100 had one or two whitewalls on it when I bought it from my Dad when we moved to the Middle West – quickly replaced with a new set of tires, as the old set were mismatched and had little tread left.
I actually like the whitewalls on the subject car. The owner did some restrained accessorizing, and it pulls off okay. The wing is really the only thing I’d say goes a mile too far.
My first car was an ’81 Dodge Omni with dirty whitewalls, quickly fixed with a black “stinky” magic marker.
I would’ve gone the other way and fixed the “dirty whitewalls” with a scrub brush and some “Soft-Scrub”. The last car I had with white walls (and looked normal with them) was my ’83 T-Bird. It was a basic ‘Bird with the 3.8L and it had the stock wheel covers (all the ‘Bird I could afford at 23). I always kept those white walls white and bright.
Years later, I got an ’88 5.0 T-Bird in black with the polished aluminum rims from the ’83 Turbo-Coupe days… the 14″ rims with 8 circular holes in a circular pattern… That car came with black walls, but I always thought it screamed way too much sidewall. So I put raised white letter tires on it once. That looked OK, but one day I was shopping for Michelin tires as I was putting a lot of miles on the car with my long commute at the time. The guys asked me, “Do you want the whitewalls on the outside, or inside?”
I hesitated for a moment, and then chose… unwisely.
Although I was back to using the Soft-Scrub and keeping them nice and bright, the look was all wrong for the car and I was stuck with that look for over 80,000 miles with them being Michelins and all.
Being that somebody talked her into believing that was an Oldsmobile, you could have talked her into some spinners with an offset and maybe some purple neon lights for the wheel wells.
Agreed, the whites do suit that Olds. Looks immaculate.
The white walls do look good on that Oldsmobile.
That 88 looks great with the whitewalls.
White walls look naff on modern cars, this looks like a Vectra with a nose job it doesnt suit the cheap and nasty used car white walls at all.
Needed SOS pads too!
I think a thin white wall would look OK, but the Impala’s are too wide. Similar to red lines, or gold lines that look great with Chevy Rally wheels.
Did anyone ever actually put luggage on those luggage racks? I just cringe because I know there are numerous holes in the trunk lid, with trapped moisture and rust not far behind.
Yuck. Always hated whitewalls. I’ll concede that in certain rare situations they look good, but this is not one of them.
Yep, there certainly are situations where they not only look good, but actually even ‘belong’.
to each their own. I am not a fan of whitewalls but I have a good friend who likes them on all his cars. he thinks I have no taste cause I had a Chrysler fifth avenue, a Cadillac Fleetwood and a mercury grand marquis that I ran with blackwalls. I pointed and laughed at his vw jetta, dodge caravan and chevy equinox with whitewalls.
that’s why they make more than one kind of tire!
(but I still think the impala looks silly!) 😉
I endorse this, I’m tiring of “50 shades of Gray”, Whitewalls,Colors,Chrome… Yeah! OK, I personally hate the “huge wheel” craze, But hell, so many damned unidentifiable appliances out there are making THEM look OK! Even If it’s silly, I smile!
No fan of rear wings either, but at least this is a relatively low one.
Mostly like white walls, but on these wheels they don’t really suit, but if the owner likes em thats what its all about.
Funny thing, the other day I sprayed aerosol tyre shine on my tyres, and while the foam was still white It looked like the car had wide white walls, I thought it looked great.
Well, you had to be there…
I love those whitewalls, and my Ashen Gray 2012 Impala would look great with them!
I’ll need tires this fall, and I like to have white-lettered tires, but sadly, those have faded as well.
I like the wing/spoiler on my car, and wish my previous 2004 Impala had one, but I got the base model. Oh well – it was the sharpest base model in town.
As long as they are kept clean, they don’t look as bad as I would have thought.
I live in Southwest Florida. We still have late model Cadillacs with Vouge tires. These are commonly found on hearses, and have an embossed sidewall with a GOLD stripe.
Not a fan on that Impala. They just don’t suit the design and clash with the alloys. I’m not against them on all cars–they look great on that dark blue 88 posted earlier–but they seem all wrong for the Impala.
I’m undergoing the dilemma myself right now. The Crown Vic needs new rubber, and it’s currently rocking a very dingy set of whitewalls (two of them dating from 2010). I’ll probably end up going blackwall due to cost; whitewalls are still available but I’d have to spend about $25 more per tire than the “cheap but decent” ones I’m looking at. But there’s a part of me that thinks, even though it’s an “aero” generation ’97, the whitewalls look good for two specific reasons–one, they make the small 15″ wheels look less “lost” in the large fender openings, and two, the car is white so the stripe coordinates.
Decisions, decisions. I really wish I could find a set of the very narrow-stripe whitewalls like were found on Lincolns and Cadillacs of the late 90’s and early 00’s, but apparently they don’t make those in a 15″ size as those cars had moved on to larger alloys.
His cousin Eddie probably gave those to him, don’t cha know.
Can’t ever recall an automotive feature that had been so ubiquitous falling out of favor so quickly as whitewalls. The take rate on this option must have been over 90% back in the ’60’s and ’70’s. Only skinflints and fleet vehicles stayed with black. There were even “Porta-Walls” available, which were fake white rubber rings used to make blackwalls appear white.
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