61 Impala Bubble Top BMW Driveline "Cheemer" Feat. Jay Leno's Garage, Show Car!
Price: US $19,200.00 Item location: Island Lake, Illinois, United States
- Condition: Used
- Make: Chevrolet
- Model: Impala
- Type: Coupe
- Doors: 2 Doors
- Year: 1961
- VIN: 11837T181435
- Color: Green
- Engine size: BMW M70 V-12
- Number of cylinders: 12
- Fuel: Gasoline
- Transmission: Automatic
- Drive type: BMW 750IL
- Interior color: Tan
- Vehicle Title: Clear Want to buy? Contact seller!
1961 Chevrolet Impala“One of the best examples of a custom car that I've ever seen." That’s what Jay Leno said about this 1961 Chevrolet Impala dubbed, “Project Cheemer,” when it was featured on his show, “Jay Leno’s Garage.” He is absolutely right. Check out the video below of this car when it was featured:
1961 Chevrolet Impala Bubble Top Pro-Touring "Project Cheemer" FEATURES:•Featured on “Jay Leno’s Garage!” Check out the video!•“One of the Best Examples of a custom car I have Ever seen” – Jay Leno•Voted “The Most Beautiful Car” and “Best Engineered Car” in Sweden•BMW M70 V-12 Engine•BMW 4-Speed Automatic•Power Steering•4-Wheel Power Disc Brakes with Billet calipers•Custom one-off wheels by Mike Curtis•Cooper Zeon 2xs radials all around•Custom hand-made, one-off body side moldings•Custom one off tail lights•Custom one off grill•Stainless steel custom Exhaust system•Air Ride Suspension
Jay Leno - Cheemer Car
If you’re a classic car guy at heart and love the ‘61 Bubble top Chevy’s, but you also appreciate the dependability and luxury of a BMW… this just might be the perfect car for you! This 1961 Impala incorporates fine American design from the sixties, along with great European handling and performance of today. One of the things we hear around here at Custom Classics from our customers building their cars is how they want the look of the yester-year cars, but they want today’s reliability. Which is part of the reason our mission statement is “Restoring yesterday’s classics for today’s driving pleasures.” Well here you really do have the best of both worlds! Everyone in this industry from the builders to the parts manufactures are all about building a fun and reliable car that has killer looks. When you walk around this car and look at the insane amount of details of this build, you begin to wonder what a car like this would cost to build today… its easier to just say, “A LOT.” We routinely build similar projects for our customers similar to this car, and they can easily run well over $400,000 to complete. And, you’re going to have to wait at least a year or even a few years for the car to be completed. Here’s a tip from the pros: Buy a finished car you like. It will save you thousands AND you can enjoy driving something TODAY.
Lets just start at the top and work our way down through this “Cheemer.” First off, a little info about the car, including who built it and where it came from. A very clever gentlemen named Lars Linburg built this car in Sweden. As a matter of a fact, this car was sold new in Sweden back in 1961 and spent its entire life there until just a couple of years ago when it was shipped over to the US and shown here in the states. Lars spent 5 years and an “undisclosed” amount of money building this beauty here before you.
The longer you walk around this incredible piece of machinery, the longer you begin to appreciate the incredible amount of time and work spent on the body alone. It’s obvious Lars didn’t skimp when it came to doing the paint and body work. The smooth, two-tone Candy Green paint that was top coated with Urethane clear and then wet sanded and buffed to a smooth slick surface that looks like a sheet of glass. This car has been done now for several years and has some normal wear from the show circuit but its amazing how great of condition this car is in; truly a testament to the quality of the build. The straight body panels with tight gaps is another thing that is hard to miss when you look over the sleek body. The front and rear bumpers where also straightened to near perfection and given one heck of a chrome plating job…seriously, these bumpers are just incredible and gleam in the sunlight.
Let’s take note of the custom fit stock front and rear glass that sit flush to the body. Here, the builder altered the body to eliminate the original front and rear window moldings. They did this by filling in the body to give it that total custom / modern look all while still using the original glass for this car. So, in the event you crack a windshield you wont have to have anything custom made, just order another one for a stock ‘61 Impala. Another over-the-top item on this car that helps set it apart from other pro-touring cars of this caliber is the custom, one-off, solid brass body side moldings that were hand built. After they were built and fit to the car, they were then sent out and dipped in chrome most likely by the same people who did the bumpers as the quality is all the same here folks – perfection.
Some other one-off items that are worth mentioning is the custom made grill, custom fabricated and counter sunk fog lights, custom one-off tail lights, and the custom exterior door mirrors. Also take note of his choice of custom fit Fiat door handles that really adds to the sleek profile of the car. All those tasteful little touches add up to make one amazing show car.
Moving now to the inside of this crazy Impala, Lars used and modified BMW 3-series front seats, and BMW 850 rear seats that were custom fit into this interior. There’s a one-off custom console that is finished off in the center with carbon fiber. We all know what a custom interior costs, well it doesn’t look like he cut corners here either… the interior is smooth flowing and functional. There is an astoundingly careful and tasteful mating of the luxurious BMW interior combined with ‘60’s Chevy nostalgia going on here. Throughout the car these well-planned choices are what makes the whole package come together so well here.
In over 30 years of building custom cars here at Custom Classics, I know what kind of money is spent on a custom build to make the underside look as nice as the top side paint, and well, let me tell you… NO money or time was spared underneath this car. Putting the car up on a lift and spending some time looking around under here is a jaw dropping experience. I was in awe to see a smoothed off, slick painted, and wet-sanded, buffed chassis under here… not to mention the attention to detail on everything else and how flawlessly they mated the BMW 750 driveline to this Impala body. Take for example the custom stainless exhaust system, and just what it took to get that system run as you see it in our pictures. The attention to detail on the floor pans and rockers, as well as all the suspension pieces is very impressive and something that has to really be seen in person to fully appreciate.
All of this car's drive-line, engine, transmission, electronics/wiring is all from a BMW 750il. So, incredibly, when maintenance and any other work is needed on this car, all you’ll most likely have to do is to drop this baby off at your local BMW dealership. (And won’t that be quite the conversation starter there at the dealership!) All of the suspension and original BMW wiring is built into this car. The air ride system is aftermarket and is nicely hidden in the trunk under the rear floor, and is very easily accessed from the trunk. Custom one-off wheels with Cooper 235/35 ZR19’s on the front and 285/30 ZR20’s in the rear. Custom polished billet brake calipers are visible through the custom one-off wheels for this car.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:Multi Show Winner:• Featured on “Jay Leno’s Garage”• Boyd Coddington Memorial Award • John D’Agostinos Award• Grand National Roadster Show - Outstanding Engineering Award• Sacramento Autorama• Blackies Fresno Autorama (Invite Only Show)• Numerous Engineering Awards• Numerous Best of Shows and First Place awards• Featured in Numerous Magazines• Used many times for advertising• Voted Best Car in Sweden• Driven from California to Colorado to GoodGuys Show, and awarded “Long Distance” award.
So for a great looking classic ride that’s reliable and easy to maintain, this 61 Impala really is a heck of a deal. Call our sales staff today for more information about this incredible show car and amazing piece of engineering!