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The Last Imperial Limousine by GHIA

Imperial Home Page -> Imperials by Year -> 1965 -> Limousines -> the Last Ghia

This is what the seller had to say about this unique 1965 Ghia offered for sale in July 2011:

This magnificent example of a Chrysler Imperial was crafted by the Italian coachbuilder Ghia. It is propelled by a 413 cubic-inch V8 engine that generates 365 horsepower. It was originally owned by Reze Palahvi, the Shah of Iran, and later owned by Hollywood screenwriter Larry Cohen. It was completely restored by the owner in 2006.
From 1957 to 1965, Ghia built 132 Crown Imperial Limousines. These cars cost Chrysler far more to produce than the selling price. Consequently, virtually all Ghia-built Crown Imperials were intentionally sold to high-profile individuals, and were used as a marketing strategy. Other owners include, Jacqueline Kennedy, General MacArthur, Nelson Rockefeller, The King of Saudi Arabia, Pearl Buck, and David Sarnoff
The car is special in a number of regards. It was the last Crown Imperial Limousine ever produced by Ghia. It is production number 10 of the 10 built in 1965. Since it was produced for a 'head of state' the right rear door opens a full 90 degrees. It is also stretched an additional 5 inches more than all others to a 154.4 inch wheelbase, and has unique rear-facing jump seats. It weighs 7000 pounds and is powered by a high output 413 Chrysler V8. Original price was $19,800.
Mohammed Reza Pahlavi ordered this car for his personal use during his visits to the United States. The car was kept in the Iranian Embassy in New York.
Iranian protesters vandalized this car while it was parked on the streets of New York. It was taken out of service and temporarily stored in a garage in Washington DC.
Some years later, Hollywood Screenwriter, Larry Cohen purchased the car, and had it shipped back to his home in California where it was repaired and put back in service for his personal use. Mr. Cohen has recently done two successful movies, 'Cellular' and 'Phone Booth'. The car could be seen driving around the Hollywood Hills during the 70's and was kept at Mr. Cohen's home on Coldwater Canyon Drive in Beverly Hills. (Larry Cohen's home was William Randolph Hearst's original home)
Around 1980, an interested car collector who lived in the area noticed the car parked in the same spot in Mr. Cohen's driveway for a long time. The car had become somewhat run down, and Mr. Cohen had stopped using it. A deal was struck, and the car came into the hands of that car collector.
The restoration of any Ghia Limousine is a huge job. The project started and stopped numerous times during the 80's and 90's. Some progress had been made, but it was a long way from completion.
In June 2005, Chip Loree and Jerry Ambrosi purchased the car from that California car collector. It was in a 'million' pieces. In June of 2006, the restoration was completed - a restoration that had taken 26 years to complete.
It has been shown only once prior to its 2006 Radnor Hunt Concours appearance. It won 'People's Choice' at the National Meet of the Walter P. Chrysler Club in Williamsburg, VA.
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This page was last updated July 24, 2012 .  Send us your feedback, and come join the Imperial Mailing List - Online Car Club