Junkyard Find: 1953 Chrysler New Yorker

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin

Nearly a year has passed since we took a tour of the Brain-Melting Colorado Yard, and since that time I’ve shared such diamond-in-the-rough gems as this ’57 Chrysler Windsor, this ’52 Kaiser, this ’48 Pontiac Hearse, this ’51 Nash Airflyte, and— of course— the ’41 Plymouth Special Deluxe sedan that is now in the process of getting a Lexus SC400 suspension. I need to go back to this yard (which is located in the high desert to the east of Pikes Peak) soon, because the DMV tells me I need a notarized bill of sale to get a title for the ’41, and at that point I’ll photograph some more of the thousands of 1940-70 cars awaiting new owners. For now, let’s admire this ’53 New Yorker I shot last fall.

The big “V” emblem on the hood means that this car came from the factory with a great big Firepower Hemi engine installed.

Unfortunately, the 331-cubic-inch, 180-horse Hemi in this car is long gone. Perhaps the engine went into a 1960s drag car.

The single-digit humidity in this prickly-pear-covered landscape keeps the rust down, but the the sun is rough on paint and interiors.

You can still detect a bit of the original luxury inside.

It wouldn’t be an impossible project to get a modern-ish drivetrain in this good-looking two-door, get the bodywork and interior done, and put it back on the road. Any volunteers?








Murilee Martin
Murilee Martin

Murilee Martin is the pen name of Phil Greden, a writer who has lived in Minnesota, California, Georgia and (now) Colorado. He has toiled at copywriting, technical writing, junkmail writing, fiction writing and now automotive writing. He has owned many terrible vehicles and some good ones. He spends a great deal of time in self-service junkyards. These days, he writes for publications including Autoweek, Autoblog, Hagerty, The Truth About Cars and Capital One.

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  • Andy D Andy D on May 18, 2013

    The 3 speed Torque Flite was a darn fine transmission. Olds had the first 2 speed automatic ~ 1940. GM led in automagic in the 50's but the base models were 2 speeds. My dream is to own a '47 Dodge business coupe with Fluid Drive, Probably one of the nicest 3 on the trees. Or a Hudson with a cork wet clutch

    • Ixim Ixim on May 18, 2013

      I believe those original Hydramatics were 4 speeds with a simple fluid coupling. NDLR. There was no "Park" position; you could lock up the drivetrain by puttin the lever in reverse position. My 1947 Caddy had one - the dipstick/filler was under the front passenger floorboard; capacity was about 13 quarts! Very rugged; they may have seen service in Sherman tanks.

  • Duaney Duaney on Apr 29, 2016

    This is one of many early Chryslers where they pulled the hemi and took the remains to the crusher where I rescued it.

  • ToolGuy I wouldn't buy any old Chinese brand of vehicle, but the right EV at the right price, maybe possibly yes. If you told me this would alarm Ford and torque off FreedMike, all the better. 😉P.S. I would *definitely* consider an EV made in Taiwan. Take that, paramount leader!P.P.S. China batteries/components to convert one of my ICE vehicles to EV? Yes.
  • Wolfwagen I expect Renault to be less popular than Fiat
  • ToolGuy Helium-3, baby!
  • Roman Our 1999 Pontiac Sunfire Gt is still running without any issues. 25 years and counting.
  • 28-Cars-Later I thought today's young people weren't even getting licenses to drive, so which is it?
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