1963 Chevrolet Biscayne, Bel Air, and Impala

The 1963 Chevrolet Impala Sport Coupe had crisp and angular styling.
The 1963 Chevrolet Impala Sport Coupe had crisp and angular styling.

The 1963 Chevrolet Biscayne, Bel Air, and Impala enjoyed a boxy face-lift, with bodyside contours cleverly altered to look like major changes had taken place. "Clean-cut as a jewel," the sales brochure claimed, "smooth-riding as a jet." Ads touted such mundane features as "air-washed rocker panels," self-adjusting brakes, and a longer-life exhaust system.

The standard Turbo-Fire 283-cubic-inch V-8 got a boost to 195 horsepower, the mid-range 327-cubic-inch engine yielded 250 to 340 horsepower, and the big-block 409 cranked out 340, 400, or 425 horses. The latter used twin four-barrel carburetors and 11:1 compression.

The Impala SS convertible was the most expensive full-size Chevrolet in 1963.
The Impala SS convertible was the most expensive full-size Chevrolet in 1963.

Quite a few buyers skipped the V-8, making do with the 140-horse Turbo-Thrift six. On the opposite end of the performance spectrum, a few lucky drag racers were able to obtain one of a handful of cars that were fitted with lightweight aluminum front body panels and held a 427-cubic-inch enlargement of the 409 engine.

Impalas again sold best, with 832,600 built (including 153,271 Super Sports). Sport Sedans had their own hardtop roofline, and Sport Coupes could now get a vinyl top. Most costly model was the aggressive-looking SS Impala convertible. Available with any engine, an SS package added $161 to the ragtop's $3,024 base price and included heavy-duty springs, aluminum-trimmed bucket seats, and swirl dashboard inserts. All SS Impalas had floor shifters, and a new console included a locking compartment.

1963 Chevrolet Biscayne, Bel Air, and Impala Facts

Model
Weight range (lbs.)
Price range (new)
Number built
Biscayne3,205-3,810
$2,322-$2,830
186,500 (approx.)
Bel Air
3,215-3,810
$2,454-$3,028
354,100 (approx.)
Impala
3,310-3,870
$2,661-$3,170
832,600 (approx.)