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Imperial Crown Sedan

Subtle design details make this car appear to want to move forward: the low silhouette, the sloping line behind the headlights and the parallel line of the front wheel arches.

It was called the ‘Forward Look’, a style developed by Chrysler designer Virgil Exner, and was applied from 1955 onwards to all the models and makes of the Chrysler Corporation, including the luxury Imperial. Exner was able to give his ideas full expression in this top range.

Note the form of the spare wheel on the boot, the decorative metal band at the back of the roof, the curved side windows (this was the first car to have these) and the so-called ‘gunsight tail lights’.

A distinctive detail is the swivelling front seat which makes entry and exit easier. Options include a foot operated (!) transistor radio and a HiFi record player.

The name ‘Imperial’ was originally used for the largest and most luxurious Chrysler model. In 1955 it became a separate marque within the Chrysler Corporation in order to compete with Lincoln and Cadillac. The Imperial was discontinued in the 1970s, around the time of the oil crisis.

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