- Indulge your Supernatural fantasies with this big Chevy hardtop, done up as a clone of the hero car from the TV series, which is now up for auction on the Bring a Trailer website.
- With bench seating, a two-speed Powerglide transmission, and a burbling 283-cubic-inch engine, this is an ideal weekend cruiser that makes all the right sounds.
- Repainted black and fitted with chrome 15-inch five-spoke wheels, this Impala will be instantly familiar to a demographic far younger than your usual muscle-car enthusiast.
Running over 15 seasons since it debuted in 2005, Supernatural was one of the longest-running, most successful fantasy TV series ever. Focusing on fictional twin brothers Sam and Dean Winchester as they roved around the country fighting demons and ghosts, it was sort of a cross between a traditional Western and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. And in a Western, you need a faithful horse.
Dean Winchester had Baby, his beloved Impala. Originally, the show was supposed to feature the more obvious choice of a mid-1960s Ford Mustang, but the decision was made to go for something a little rougher around the edges. A black pillarless-hardtop Impala offered the necessary air of menace: low and rumbling and with the implication that there was plenty of space in the trunk for a body or two. Up for auction on the website Bring a Trailer—which, like Car and Driver, is part of Hearst Autos—is a clone with all the charm of the Supernatural hero car. With the auction set to end on Tuesday, December 6, bidding sits at just $5200.
The cultural impact of this show was probably a bit bewildering for dads of a certain age, asking their teenage daughters what kind of car they might like and receiving the prompt answer, “A black 1967 Chevy Impala four-door hardtop.” For a generation, Baby was more famous than the Dukes of Hazzard's General Lee. Which is as it should be, since the former was inspired by the latter.
Perhaps though, the Supernatural Impala is a bit more like the Back to the Future DeLorean, in that the show has ended up inadvertently saving a bunch of old four-door Impalas. Without its celebrity status, a classic Chevy sedan wouldn't be as popular as a coupe. Happily, this car, which started out white, with some previous body damage noted, has been brought back to life with a refurbished interior and 15-inch wheels with fresh BFGoodrich Radial T/A rubber.
Mechanically, this Impala is nothing special, with a 283-cubic-inch V-8 and a two-speed Powerglide slushbox. It's fine if you just want to cruise around all summer, but the oil pan gasket needs resealing next oil change.
Having had a chance to get up close with the actual Impala used as the hero car in Supernatural, anyone interested in this car might want to start putting together a shopping list. In person, Baby is no princess. She's a demon-shredding rottweiler. Under the hood of the real Supernatural Impala is a built-up 500-cubic-inch big block Chevy V-8, which lopes at idle like a bowling ball in an industrial dryer. The suspension is comprehensively upgraded with components from Hotchkiss, and the brakes are upgraded as well. Now in the possession of actor Jensen Ackles, who played Dean Winchester, the hero Impala is kept at his home in Texas. He put air conditioning in it but kept all the onscreen patina the same.
So, two options here. One, an easy-riding weekend cruiser that looks like the one on your favorite show. Two, haul it into the garage and build out a truly badass sedan, worthy of any Winchester. Just don't turn your back and walk away. Sam and Dean would never.
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