Chrysler Imperial Concept

Concept Cars 20 Jan 2006
Chrysler Imperial Concept

Unveiled at the 2006 Detroit Motor Show, the Imperial Concept is a vision of Chrysler’s flagship: a modern luxury car inspired to prestigious models of the past that combines a classic exterior body with an interior featuring modern solutions.

Chrysler Imperial ConceptFollowing the current trend, Chrysler unveiled a reinterpretation of one the milestones of its production history: the Imperial Concept is inspired to classic Imperial of the 1930’s and the 1950’s.

It represents Chrysler’s virtual flagship: from the oversized dimensions – a 123-inch wheelbase – to the imposing grille and the V-shaped raised deck, all the design elements express the Imperial’s superior class and luxury.

The prototype is based on the Chrysler 300 sedan, but is 17 inches longer and six inches higher.

The B pillars are absent, and the wide doors are hinged at the A and C-pillars, so that the accessibility is excellent.

Chrysler Imperial InteriorThe interior combines the American tradition – two-toned leather (Bay Brown and Birch Creme) and California burl wood – with modern solutions, like the floating elements appearance and the indirect LED illumination.

The Concept unveiled at the 2006 Detroit Motor Show is equipped with the 5.7 liters Hemi engine, and features 22 inches wheels.

From the official Press Release:

Like the great Imperials of Chrysler’s storied past, the 2006 Imperial concept vehicle is designed as Chrysler’s flagship, a luxury sedan that is elegant, provocative, aspirational, yet attainable.

1931 CG Imperial Convertible CoupeAbove: the 1931 CG Convertible Coupe, produced in

10 units: it featured roll up windows, a relatively

invention at the time (thanks Brent Merrill for the info)

For inspiration, the designers looked not only to the classic Imperials of the 1930s and 1950s but also to Chrysler’s long tradition of creative concept cars, from the earlier Chrysler d’Elegance and Falcon to the more recent Chrysler Chronos and Firepower.

This rich heritage is expressed in the crisp line that parallels the sill, then arches up over the rear wheel and flows to the rear of the car, signaling that this is a powerful rear-drive automobile.

A similarly-shaped line rises up over the front wheel and flows rearward, falling slightly as in moves into the doors.

To fully realize the subtleties of the chaste body surfaces, every area was lovingly hand-sculpted in the hallowed tradition of the custom coachbuilt LeBaron bodies of the classic era.

Chrysler Imperial Concept front view“The Imperial’s exterior artfully blends a stately nobility, hand craftsmanship, and modern dynamic sculpture and proportion,” says Mike Nicholas, principal exterior designer.

To realize the proportions the designers sought, the Imperial, mounted on a 123-inch wheelbase, is 17 inches longer and six inches higher than a 300 sedan.

The roof was pulled rearward to enlarge the cabin as well as to create the luxury of length in side view.

Most importantly, passengers sit nearly seven inches higher.

Combined with the higher hood and deck and the large 22-inch aluminum wheels, this gives the Imperial the noble stance the designers envisioned.

Chrysler Imperial front grilleChrysler Imperial headlightChrysler Imperial headlightV-shaped in plan view, the front end is dominated by a central upright radiator grille, composed of narrow chiseled linear elements of brushed and polished aluminum.

The grille is capped by a bright header emblazoned with the Chrysler wings.

Chrysler Imperial Concept rear view A polished molding, extending from the grille header to the base of the windshield, bisects the raised hood plane.

Nested beneath browed cavities, the polished aluminum parabolic pods housing the projector-beam headlights reprise the individual free-standing headlamps of the Imperials of both the early thirties and the early sixties.

At the rear, the individual circular taillights with floating outer rings combine modern LED lighting with a look evocative of the signature “gun sight” taillights of previous Imperials.

Separate slender LED lamp units provide for park, turn and back-up lamp functions.

Chrysler Imperial InteriorComplementing the hood, the raised deck lid is also V-shaped and accented by signature silver wings that unfold across its surface. Body ornamentation is confined to the upper bumper bars, side view mirrors, side window reveals, and the handsomely-sculpted door handles.

Hinged at the A and C-pillars, the wide doors can be flung open a la French doors for a dignified entry, revealing the absence of the B-pillar.


In studied contrast to the monochromatic Imperial Bronze exterior, the high-contrast four-passenger cabin is smartly two-toned in Bay Brown and Birch Creme, and features California burl wood and metallic-like accents rendered in a lustrous warm bronze.

Chrysler Imperial InteriorThe interior is characterized by the interplay of harmonious, expressively curving shapes in which the fuller forms of the instrument panel, door armrest and map pocket elements appear to “float” above sculpted recessed cavities. Even the seats seem to float above the floor. Their elliptically-curved bronze-and-burl side shields echo similar elements recessed into the full-length floor console.

“We wanted everything inside to be nested, fitted and hand-crafted,” says Nick Malachowski, principal interior designer, “with every component subtly reinforcing the hand-sculpted look of the exterior.”

This is a driver’s car, with a minimum of distracting gadgetry. A simple touch pad with intuitive controls, mounted close-by on the suspended center console armrest, permits the driver to adjust settings for radio, climate and navigation functions.

Chrysler Imperial console detailThe driver air bag/horn pad is fixed, allowing the radio and cruise-control switches to remain settled in the same position regardless of the turning steering wheel. Boldly bisecting the uncluttered floating wood-and-bronze instrument panel are two large circular pods encircling sculpted gauges rendered in satin with polished aluminum bezels. Reminiscent of earlier Imperials, the exquisitely-detailed gauge faces are deliberately designed to satisfy the soul as well as inform the mind.

Since the windshield glass is carried up onto the mid-point of the roof, front seat occupants enjoy a comprehensive view of the passing scene. All glass has a distinctive bronze tint to harmonize with the car’s color palette. Rear passengers can recline their individual seats while watching different movies, thanks to the console-mounted dual-view entertainment screen and wireless headsets. The rear seat headsets store in the package tray at the touch of a button when not needed.

Chrysler Imperial InteriorFinally, there is the luxury of expressive illumination inspired by the artistry and elegance found in modern interior architecture. LED lighting, placed behind the “floating” elements of the instrument panel and doors, is used to enhance the sculptural elements of the interior. LED lights also provide indirect cove lighting for the headliner, which in addition offers the choice of electroluminescently-lit fabric or directed-beam spotlights located in the overhead console.

Drawing on the rich heritage of its memorable predecessors and endowed with modern dynamic proportions, this newest Imperial, crafted with a nobility of stance and purpose, is the finest expression of the Chrysler marque.

Chrysler Imperial Concept – Technical Specifications


  • Length: 214.1” (5439 mm)
  • Wheelbase: 122.9” (3123mm)
  • Front Overhang: 38.8” (985mm)
  • Width: 76.1” (1933mm)
  • Height: 63.6” (1615mm)
  • Track, Frt/Rr: 63.9”/64.5”
  • Approach/Depart Angle: 15 degrees/14.3 degrees
  • Couple: 37.0” (940mm)


  • Exterior: Chrysler Bronze
  • Interior: Birch Cream/Bay Brown

Key Performance Attributes (ALL ESTIMATES)

  • 0-60 mph: 5.5 seconds
  • Standing 1⁄4 mile: 14.5 seconds
  • Top Speed: 160 mph
  • Range: 300 miles

Powertrain and Suspension

  • Engine: 5.7L Hemi (340hp/390ft.-lbs)
  • Drivetrain: RWD/ A580 5-speed automatic
  • Suspension: Short/long-arm Independent
  • Rear: 5 link Independent
  • Front Tire Size: P245/45R22
  • Wheel Size: 22”X 9”
  • Outer Diameter: 30.6” (777mm)
  • Rear Tire Size: P245/45R22
  • Wheel Size: 22” X 9”
  • Outer Diameter: 30.6” (777mm)

(Source: Chrysler)

Image Gallery

Related Stories

Genesis X Convertible Concept

Genesis X Convertible Concept

Joining the 2021 X Concept and X Speedium Coupe concept cars, the Genesis X Convertible represents the latest evolution of the brand’s Athletic Elegance design language and an indication of its future EV models.
Exclusive: the design story of the Pininfarina Apricale hypercar

Exclusive: the design story of the Pininfarina Apricale hypercar

The design story of the Apricale hypercar styled by Pininfarina and developed by Viritech: an exclusive in-depth interview with the design team.
Ralph Gilles appointed Head of Design by Fiat Chrysler

Ralph Gilles appointed Head of Design by Fiat Chrysler

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) has announced that Ralph Gilles was named Head of Design and member of the FCA Group Executive Council (GEC), succeeding Lorenzo Ramaciotti.


Leave a Comment


Get all the updates with our weekly newsletter!

Find a Car

Scroll To Top
Scroll To Bottom