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1969 Imperial Spotter's Guide

Imperial Home Page -> Imperials by Year -> 1969 -> Spotter's Guide
1969 Imperial LeBaron Coupe

1969 was the first year for the Fuselage Look, a dramatic departure from the square lines of 1967 and 1968. Imperial remained much the same mechanically for 1969, still utilizing Unibody construction, front torsion bar/rear leaf spring suspension, and the 440 cubic inch power plant rated at 350 bhp.

Buyers were enthusiastic about Imperial's new look, taking home 22,083 units for the model year, as opposed to 15,367 for 1968. Unfortunately, a convertible was not available this year for the first time since 1957. Instead, Imperial introduced a two-door LeBaron model, which considerably outsold the two-door Crown model for this same year. 1969 would also be the last year for a four-door sedan from Imperial.

For a comparison of 1969, 1970, and 1971 Imperials, be sure to see the Fuselage Imperial Comparison.

1969 Imperial LeBaron four-door hardtop seen from the front. Imperial's headlights were discreetly hidden behind headlight doors for the first time this year, a trait that would grace all subsequent models. 1969 Imperial LeBaron four-door hardtop seen from the rear. Notice the clean, simple lines and absence of excessive decoration. The IMPERIAL nameplate appears discreetly on the bumper above the license plate. The vinyl top with small rear window was standard on the LeBaron.


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1969 Imperial LeBaron four-door hardtop seen from the side. The clean, shapely lines were enhanced by a single strip of trim running the length of the car. Cornering lights and side marker lights were integrated into the front fender These images show the 1969 Imperial LeBaron two-door.  1969 was the first year that the LeBaron was offered as a two door.  The white Imperial is from a corporate promotional photograph.


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Seen from both front and rear, the '69 Imperial LeBaron demonstrates the clean, smooth lines of the fuselage design.  At the rear, notice the "IMPERIAL" script integrated into the center of the bumper.


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1969 would also be the last year for an Imperial sedan.  Notice the full-length "B" pillar between the doors and frame around the windows, both of which are absent on hardtops.  As a "base model" entry for Imperial, these sedans typically came with bench seats -- but bench seats that were nothing less than Imperial.


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The "shark fin" cornering lights/side markers are unique to the '69 Imperial.  Note also the front turn signals which are smaller than those on the '70 and '71 Imperials. Here's another good shot of the front of the '69 Imperial.  1967 would be the last year for an Imperial hood ornament until one re-appeared again in 1974.


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Here's an interior shot of a '69 Imperial LeBaron two door hardtop.  This one is exceptionally well appointed, including the leather "bucket" style seats. The interior of the Imperial LeBaron four door hardtop is a bit more formal, but no less lavish.  The quality of the leather in these cars is truly amazing.


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The door panels for the '69 Imperial are unique to this year.  The woodgrain inserts house a very tastefully designed Imperial eagle emblem. The dash and instrument panel for 1969 are of a clean, uncluttered design that covers the width of the car.  All power accessories are within easy reach of the driver's fingertips.


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With all doors open, it's obvious that the Imperial offers ample room to enter and leave the car.  Headroom and legroom are never a problem in an Imperial! Under the hood, the 440 cubic inch (7.2 litre) V-8 continued essentially unchanged from previous years, offering 350 bhp.  For 1971, compression would be lowered slightly, bringing horsepower to 335 bhp.  Beginning in 1972, horsepower was rated in SAE Net figures, which meant that the numbers were lower, but performance was not markedly changed.



Some exterior images of the '69 Imperial taken from factory promotional materials.


The '69 Imperial from the front, with the headlight doors open, and . . .  The '69 Imperial from the rear.  The basic theme of the fuselage style would be carried through the 1971 model year, with a substantial revision for 1972 and 1973.


This page was last updated November 16, 2003. Send us your feedback and come join the Imperial Mailing List - Online Car Club.