The Rectilinear Styling of the 1963 Chevrolet Impala

The Impala is one of Chevrolet’s longest running models, with a history that goes back to 1958 and is still running today in 2017. The 1963 Chevrolet Impala with “Jet Smooth” styling is part of the third incarnation of, or the third generation of, the Chevy Impala.

1963 Chevrolet Impala
1963 Chevrolet Impala image by GPS 56 from New Zealand (1963 Chevrolet Impala) [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

The Sleek and Elegant 1963 Chevrolet Impala

This classic Chevy features long, straight lines described as rectilinear, but it has just enough curves to smooth out the look.

So, it comes off as long and sleek rather than boxy, and there’s nothing plain or simplistic in the look of these sweet bowties.

The 1963 Impala was designed with rectilinear styling and it had an aluminum rear taillight panel with a chrome border on the ’63 Impala SS models.

The Chevrolet company described the look of the car as Jet Smooth, and some original ads presented the car driving below a low-flying airplane to let customers compare the body lines of the Impala to a small jet.

’63 Impala Body Lines

More pointed front and rear fenders made the ’63 Impala look longer and more low-slung than previous years’ Impalas, as noted by My Classic Garage.

A ‘crease” graced the roof of the sport sedan models, slightly above the rear window.

1963 was the first year for the “coved” instrument panel, completely changing the look of the dashboard from previous years.

Simple indicator lights (idiot lights) replaced the gauges used in earlier models.

An optional tach was available, built into the dash above the steering wheel, but not very many Impala owners ordered that particular feature.

1963 Chevy Impala Engine Options

1963 Chevrolet Impala engine options were similar to 1962 Impala engine choices, with the small-block 283 cid and the 327cubic inch (4.6 and 5.4 L) V8’s being the most popular engines offered.

A special drag racer’s and NASCAR 427-cubic-inch (7.0 L) version of the 409 TurboFire V8 engine was installed in the 1963 Chevrolet Impala Sport Coupe – or Chevrolet Regular Production Option (RPO) Z11.

1963 Impala Tranny Options

the transmission options offered in the Impala in 1963 were the 3- and 4-speed Synchromesh standards, the Chevy OverDrive transmission and the Chevy PowerGlide transmission.

Color Options on the 1963 Impala

The factory exterior color options for the ’63 Impala were:

  • Tuxedo Black
  • Laurel Green
  • Ivy Green
  • Silver Blue
  • Monaco Blue
  • Azure Aqua
  • Marina Aqua
  • Autumn Gold
  • Ember Red
  • Saddle Tan
  • Cordovan Brown
  • Ermine White
  • Adobe Beige
  • Satin Silver
  • Palomar Red

The factory interior colors for the Impala in 1963 were:

  • Blue
  • Green
  • Red
  • Fawn
  • Aqua
  • Black
  • White
  • Saddle

By Laure Justice

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