It’s an oft-retold cautionary tale in the auto industry: in 1990, Lee Iacocca, the famously megalomaniacal chairman and CEO of Chrysler, decided to mess with the Imperial, the brand’s flagship vehicle going back decades. The redesign of the classic automobile was a massive failure—the result of Iacocca’s uninformed meddling, Homer Simpson–style, in the process—and the Chrysler Imperial subsequently died an ignoble death. Today, launching a redesign of a beloved vehicle is still taking a chance, but these five fabulous new cars make the risk worth it, and then some.

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