Frank Sinatra in a Chrysler Imperial, 1980

THE WAY IT WAS


Published:

1980

 

 

Yes, that’s Ol’ Blue Eyes behind the wheel of a brand-new 1981 Chrysler Imperial. It was presented to Frank Sinatra in Detroit by his pal, Chrysler Chairman Lee Iacocca, in gratitude for Sinatra’s agreeing to promote the car without charge while the automaker was struggling to avoid bankruptcy. Sinatra appeared in print ads and television commercials in which he sang a specially penned song about the luxurious car called “It’s Time” … for Imperial. There was even a Frank Sinatra Edition of the auto, available only in Glacier Blue Crystal — supposedly to match the color of the singer’s celebrated peepers. That special edition included badging and a Mark Cross leather case with 16 cassette tapes of Sinatra songs. The Imperial had been made since 1926, but it didn’t have its own marque until 1955, so it could compete more directly with its luxury rivals — Cadillac and Lincoln. The Imperial was manufactured until 1975, then returned from 1981 to 1983.


If you enjoy the monthly content in Hour Detroit, "Like" us on Facebook and/or follow us on Twitter for more frequent updates.

Edit Module
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags

Archive »Related Content

The Way It Was

The Metropolitan Building, 1927

The Way It Was

Abbott-Detroit automobile, 1911

The Way It Was

Club Harlem Piano

The piano is a reminder that even during the Great Depression, Detroiters could still dance the night away

Local Museum Pays Homage to Lace Treasures

Exploring the collection of gowns, gloves, and more at Northville's Lace Museum
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. 2017 Restaurant of the Year: Bistro 82
    With impeccable attention to details and the subtle evolution of ongoing menu items, the staff at...
  2. Mackinac's Grand Hotel Subject of WTVS Documentary
    Previewing Detroit Public Television's new documentary about the iconic hotel, debuting in March
  3. What Do Wine Rating Numbers Mean?
    Wilfred Wong explains the range in understandable words.