The Chevy Impala became the best-selling automobile in the U.S. when full size models dominated the market. The Impala, named after the Southern African antelope, is most readily distinguished by having three sets of taillights. Chevy’s chief engineer at the time defined the Impala as a “prestige car within the reach of the average American citizen. “ And so it was.
The 1959 Chevrolet Impala was radically reworked sharing bodyshells with lower-end Buicks as well as with Pontiac, part of a GM economy move, Chevrolets rode a wheelbase 11/2inches longer than before. Atop a new X-frame chassis, roofs sat three inches lower,and bodies measured more than two inches wider overall. The growing size contributed to increased curb weight, one more trend of the times. Its tailfins protruded outward ratherthan upward.