The Finless and Fine 1961 Chevy Impala

The ’61 Chevy Impala rolled off the production line with a few body changes that defined its look. While still built on the B-Body platform, the 1961 Impala was a touch shorter than the 1960 Impala had been. It had a different roofline, and those iconic Impala fins were shaved down into smooth, rounded tail that curved around to house a set of triple tail lights on each side of the car.

1961 Chevrolet Impala
1961 Chevrolet Impala image by GPS 56 from New Zealand (1961 Chevrolet Impala) [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Full-Sized Boxy B-Body Bubble-Top ’61 Impala

The 1961 production introduced the first year for the third generation Chevy Impala. The dramatic shape of the previous year’s models had been toned down into a boxy, sleek shape.

The 119-inch wheelbase left the ’61 Impala 1.5 inches shorter than the ’60 Impala, and the slightly shortened designed added to the boxy lines.

The six-taillight style in the rear was unique to the Impala, and made this a car that stood out from other Chevrolets when looking at it from behind.

A total of five different engine options and five different transmission options were offered, for a variety of possible power-train combos.

1961 Chevrolet Impala Color Options

According to a color chart provided by Impala Classics, fifteen different color options were available for the Impala in 1961, and two-tone packages were also offered, The colors available were:

  • Seafoam Green
  • Arbor Green Poly
  • Jewel Blue Poly
  • Midnight blue Ply
  • Twilight Turquoise Poly
  • Seamist Turquoise
  • Fawn Beige Poly
  • Roman Red
  • Coronna Cream
  • Ermine White
  • Almond Beige
  • Sateen Silver Poly
  • Shadow Gray poly
  • Honduras Maroon Poly
  • Tuxedo Black

The six interior colors available were: Blue, Green, Turquoise, Red, Grey, and Fawn.

1961 Chevy Impala
1961 Chevy Impala image by GPS 56 from New Zealand (1961 Chevrolet Impala) [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

1961 Chevy Impala Production Numbers

The ’61 Impala was a wildly popular car, with a total of 491,000 produced in 1961, as noted by My Classic Garage.

79,903 of those were convertible coupes, like the Tuxedo Black Impala Shown at the top of this page.

The rarest model of all was the Impala Super Sport for 1961, with only 453 produced with the Impala SS option package.

By Laure Justice

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