My Car Quest

July 4, 2020

Concept Cars That Didn’t Make It : 2006 Chrysler Imperial

by Wallace Wyss –

This show car goes back to 2006. It was sort of a Bentley inspired Imperial bringing back a name that goes back to 1926. At one time Imperials had more status than Continentals, the most glorious moments when they had Ghia body some in Italy (Cadillac did the same with Pininfarina).

Chrysler loaded the one-off with whatever technology was lying around the design center, including wireless headsets, ambient LED lighting, a rear-seat entertainment system with dual screens, and electrically retractable rear headrests.

2006 Chrysler Imperial Concept

The LED lights front and rear, were new in 2006 but old now. This could have been an eighth-generation Imperial, though Chrysler didn’t want to take the chance. Note it has rear hinged coach doors in the rear which Ford timidly offered on some Lincolns roughly a decade later. The dashboard has a great slab of wood and two big gauges in front of the driver. Sort of Bentley-ish but maybe would have needed real wood to make it more convincing. It had a console in back with some controls–something we saw in the Genesis 90.

2006 Chrysler Imperial Concept

So the Koreans were plucky enough to build a luxury car that was priced higher than Detroit’s top sedans. Sad to think how Detroit automakers spend millions on dollars and thousands of hours on proposing concepts and then toss them aside and gallop off in another direction only to see foreign automakers aim for that niche. I could see this design succeeding. If it is revived, I can see it being brought back with say a 7, or 9 speed automatic, variable displacement engine, and redesigned grille.

The rear was the car’s worst feature. It had a rise on the trunk lid like some old Pontiac Grand Prix. And hey why not four wheel drive to give the Bentley Bentayga and Rolls Cullinan some grief? If any company has experience in 4WD it is the Chrysler Corp. with owning Jeep.

2006 Chrysler Imperial Concept

What could they sell it for? Well, the body and interior would have to be top notch to price it over $100K but maybe where the Genesis marketers would be scared to go. Chrysler would have to beat it in quality.

2006 Chrysler Imperial Concept

I think the market is there. We have 44 million unemployed, so the economy is a wee bit shaky for a $300,000 Bentley as your business car…

The 22 inch wheels are distinctive. The lights and trunk lid are old hat, both need updating. I don’t think it’s aged that much. And I am sure tired of the 300 they have now…

Let us know what you think in the Comments.

Wallace Wyss

 
 
THE AUTHOR: Wallace Wyss worked in Detroit writing ad copy for two ad agencies with GM accounts. Now he’s bent his pen to the task of writing 25 car based fiction stories for an anthology.

 
 
 
 
 
 

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Summary
Concept Cars That Didn't Make It : 2006 Chrysler Imperial
Article Name
Concept Cars That Didn't Make It : 2006 Chrysler Imperial
Description
Chrysler loaded the one-off 2006 Chrysler Imperial with whatever technology was lying around the design center, including wireless headsets, ambient LED lighting, a rear-seat entertainment system with dual screens, and electrically retractable rear headrests.
Author

Comments

  1. Glen Durmisevich says

    I disagree with you on this one. The design is too cliche with other brands styling elements. A Bentley copy is not a Bentley and with Chrysler’s stature and quality it couldn’t bring the high dollar price tag. Fortunately they chose a better path and started searching in the direction of forward thinking not copying the past of others.

  2. Rob Krantz says

    I remember this concept car and did not like it then and not keen on it now either. While interesting, it tries to be a Bentley wanna be and it doesn’t come off. If Chrysler wants to recapture the Imperial elegance of the long distant past, they need a clean sheet design that is stunning to look at and the materials they use should be first rate.

  3. RK - no relation says

    That car is pretty ugly from all angles but it’s mostly outdated details. The body still looks fresh and it could work with some updates.

  4. I like most of it, but the Cylon grill has to go.

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