(first posted 3/30/2015) Some cars command your attention with their mere presence. This broad-shouldered 1972 Imperial LeBaron hardtop sedan did exactly that, while I was taking a walk through the Wicker Park neighborhood of Chicago on a spring Sunday afternoon.
Look at the chrome-topped fender line which sweeps in a straight line back to the C-pillar. It looks like a battering ram, albeit an elegant one. (Maybe it did serve as a battering ram at some point, judging from the wildly mismatched paint on the front fender.) This brute seems a little early-1970’s Las Vegas – sporting a dark-red, brocade suit with wide lapels, wingtip shoes (white wall tires) and a fresh dab of Brylcreem (Armor-All) to keep the pompadour and sideburns (landau top) looking right. Staring straight ahead, he means all business. He smokes unfiltered cigarettes (which he rolls himself, Pal).
My opinion is that this Imperial LeBaron (don’t call it a Chrysler) gives up absolutely nothing in class to the Cadillac DeVilles or Lincoln Continentals with which it competed in the American luxury car market of the time. I would proudly have rolled down Fremont St. in this vaunted vault and valet-parked it in front of Binion’s for all to see.
Wicker Park, Chicago, Illinois.
Sunday, May 26, 2013.
More Imperial goodness:
My CC: 1973 Imperial LeBaron by Chrysler by Alan Petrillo
Design Analysis: Fender Blades on a Fuselage – 1973 Imperial by Alan Petrillo