By on February 16, 2021

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, RH front view - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsChrysler redesigned the big C-Body cars for the 1969 model year, calling the vaguely airplane-ish curved-panel look the “Fuselage Style.” Although the prole-grade Fury and middlebrow Dodge Monaco looked distressingly similar to their upscale Imperial and Chrysler New Yorker/300/Newport siblings in the 1969-1973 Fuselage era (further blurring the Snoot Factor dividing lines among the Chrysler divisions), these cars offered plenty of Detroit steel at a good price. Here’s one of the most affordable Chrysler-badged C-Bodies available during the first year of Fuselage Styling, found in a Denver-area car graveyard.

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, interior - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsAt the top of the 1969 Chrysler C-Body pyramid (the Imperial was its own marque during this period) stood the New Yorker, which came with all sorts of Michigan Plushitude and high-tech features. Below that came the 300, and then several increasingly-affordable versions of the Newport. Today’s Junkyard Find is a bottom-of-the-food-chain Newport four-door post sedan.

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, glovebox emblem - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsMSRP on this car started at $4,252 (about $31,240 in 2021 clams), which compares favorably to the $6,772 sticker on the very similar Imperial LeBaron but seems like a gigantic price jump over the also-very-similar $2,744 Plymouth Fury I. Sure, you got an amusingly underpowered Slant-6 engine and three-on-the-tree column-shift manual transmission in your Fury for that price, but the two cars would look nearly identical from a block away.

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, fake stitching - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsLike the Fury, the Newport features phony “stitching” molded into the plastic of the dash and door panels.

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, power seat switches - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsHowever, this car has the upscale power-seat option, available in theory in the Fury I but almost never ordered; strangely, the original buyer didn’t get the power-window option as well.

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, window crank handle - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsSmoker vent windows went away from the Newport after 1970.

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, dash - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsAir conditioning was a $406 option (close to three grand today), and this AM radio got rung up for $92 (about $675 now). Even in another year with nuttin’ to do, the hip Newport buyer desired refrigerated air and driving music.

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, engine - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsNo lowly six-cylinder or small-block V8 was available in the 1969 Newport. The base engine was the 383-cubic-inch (6.3-liter) big-block V8, rated at 290 optimistic gross horsepower. Your Chrysler dealer probably could have arranged to have the New Yorker’s 350-horse 440 installed in a Newport, but it would have made more sense to just buy a New Yorker.

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, steering wheel - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsThe 1969 Newport’s factory brochure lists the three-speed Torqueflite automatic transmission as an option, which implies that the base transmission was a three-on-the-tree manual. I have a hard time believing that any big-block/three-on-the-tree ’69 Newports ever saw the light of day, but stranger things have happened in the automotive world.

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, seat fabric - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsThis is the “elegant sheath of Jacquard-weave cloth-and-vinyl upholstery” gushed over by Chrysler’s enthusiastic copywriting team, 52 years later.

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, Public Law 89-563 decal - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsI don’t recall seeing factory-applied decals referring to Public Law 89-563 on any other cars in my travels.

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, warranty validation - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsA Warranty Validation sticker from the day Georgia approved the 19th Amendment will go to The Crusher with this car. These stickers were applied by dealers after performing warranty-mandated repairs.

1969 Chrysler Newport in Colorado junkyard, rear glass - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsThis starship’s days of cruising the galaxy are over, sadly. Non-hardtop Detroit sedans of this era don’t get rescued by enthusiasts.


Doug Sanders drove a ’69 Newport, and its interior matched his golf shoes and socks; just a year after he did this advertisement, he achieved lasting renown for missing a three-foot putt at the 1970 Open Championship. Doug passed away last April.

For links to more than 2,000 additional Junkyard Finds, Junkyard Gems, Junkyard Treasures, and Down On the Junkyard posts, visit the Junkyard Home of the Murilee Martin Lifestyle Brand™.

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62 Comments on “Junkyard Find: 1969 Chrysler Newport 4-Door Sedan...”


  • avatar
    Lie2me

    I had a crazy friend in high school who’s dad had one of these. This guy was out to destroy this Chrysler. Neutral drops and he would count how many studs he could rip from the tires with each peel-out

    I loved that guy… I think his dad is still in jail for child-murder

  • avatar
    PeriSoft

    People complain that cars are too expensive now, but imagine paying $30k for this? In an era of cars that were fully depreciated at, what, 75k or four years?

    We have it good!

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      Completely different tax and wage structure in 1969.

      • 0 avatar
        PeriSoft

        Enough different to make the real cost-per-quality-mile of modern vehicles higher than in the ’70s? I mean, first off, the ‘quality’ part means you’d needed to have gotten something like a Merc s-class to have space/features/performance equivalent to a base 2021 Elantra. Absolutely nothing lasted as long, which means your equivalent cost-per-mile in terms of expected lifetime or expected depreciation was probably double. I really can’t see any metric by which modern cars don’t provide vastly better value unless you have some pretty serious argument that inflation/wage/tax metrics are off by an absurd factor – five to ten, maybe?

        • 0 avatar
          Lie2me

          My dad got a ’69 Cadillac with a sticker of just under $7000, which is equal to $49,893.02 today. Which sounds about right

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          I don’t have an depreciation data but agree cost per mile was likely *much* higher then but it is difficult to directly compare products from different eras. We must remember though the cost of everything else was less prior to the Nixon Shock of August 15, 1917, as were your taxes. FICA total taxes alone were 9.6% of $7800 (55K 2021) whereas today are 15.4% of $142,800 (up from $137K in 2020). Personally I would rather have the much crappier automotive product in exchange for 1969 taxes and other costs.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_Security_(United_States)

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            Have to agree with the ‘cost per mile’ concern as cars of this era (and earlier) were considered ‘beaters’ once they reached about 6 years. Rust was a major concern. However the Chrysler slant-six and big block and their transmission were extremely robust.

            A friend of mine had one of these beasts. It was actually a ‘lot of value’ in its time. A big, fairly comfortable cruiser, and Chrysler still was something of a prestige marque.

          • 0 avatar
            PeriSoft

            @28 – Federal income tax for income at 50k was 60% in 1970 and is 22% now. You sure you want to go back? :p

            Not sure how standard deductions etc played into total tax load but it seems likely that overall taxation is lower now even accounting for higher FICA.

            Also, lots of other stuff was *insanely* more expensive then, relative to income. Phone service, televisions, audio, airline travel. Toys were insanely expensive – cheap, folded metal trucks with rattly wheels that cost as much as a Nintendo Switch does now, that kinda thing.

            People talk about how their parents made it work, but they’re not accounting for the monumental increase in expected standard of living across all subjective factors we’ve experienced. I do *not* want to go back!

          • 0 avatar
            PeriSoft

            Here’s some more examples from the early ’70s, in modern pricing. A 100 watt audio amplifier, normal brand? $2700. Two-stroke Remington chain saw? $1350. A 12″ color TV? $2490. A console TV with a (doomed) cartridge cassette recorder? $6740. A crappy-looking 6″ camera tripod with a clamp on it? $148.

            Everything was insanely expensive in comparison to now. Economies of scale were lower, infrastructure was more expensive, supply chains were less efficient, engineering was less efficient and more expensive. We take things for granted now, not just in cars and computers but everywhere, that would have been the realm of the fantastically wealthy or flat-out impossible 40 or 50 years ago.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Absolutely. 14K/39% in 1969 is $99,7 today (likely *much* higher in reality bc BLS is very selective) but the effective rate to 14K was 23.9% and *much* more was deductible. FICA is not deductible and many states and localities had not yet enacted income taxes. So even at an effective tax rate of 21% (24% bracket) I now add 7.65% + 3% state + 1% local to be just about 32%. Previously I would have paid 23.9% before dedications, 4.8% on *the first 7800*, so 2.5% overall on the 14K for a total of 26.4% *before deductions*. Yes I want to pay 1969 taxes, so should you. Not to mention whole country was a superpower then not teetering on total collapse as now.

          • 0 avatar
            PeriSoft

            OK, fair enough on tax rates – however, that additional 10% in taxes doesn’t pay for the drastically lowered costs (and increased quality) of essentially all consumer goods. I’ll take 20% higher tax rates over paying $1400 instead of $300 for a chain saw, or $2500 for a mid-range TV instead of $600 for a mid-range TV (leaving out the raw tech advances meaning that the expensive one of those was 12″ and 300×180 and the cheap one is 75″ and 3840×2160!).

            As far as geopolitics goes, my feeling on that is that the ’50s through the ’80s were an anomalous period; the US was massively powerful because we were the only country to emerge unscathed from WW2 economically and infrastructurally. Of course we were kicking ass! But that couldn’t last; things even out. I don’t consider the current situation to be “brink of collapse” so much as indicating that we have to acclimate to playing on a more even world stage, rather than one where the whole rest of the rich world recently spent four years getting the snot bombed out of it.

          • 0 avatar

            “Nixon Shock of August 15, 1917”

            Couple months after there was the Lenin shock in Russia which send Russia into tailspin for 70 years and resulted in over 50 million people violently killed during aftershock period.

          • 0 avatar
            ajla

            “Everything was insanely expensive in comparison to now.”

            I don’t know about compared to 1969, but compared to 1997 a lot of things are and a lot of things aren’t.
            pbs.twimg.com/media/
            DJ9l_q6VYAERRDt?format=jpg&name=900×900

            Cars are about flat. I’d definitely rather crash in a MY21 car but something from ’97 isn’t an unreliable, unequipped antique either.

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            Unless you are self-employed, you only pay half of FICA, and it is capped out at somewhere in the $130K range (can’t remember exactly the cutoff).

            It was possibly better to be poor to middle class back then. It is vastly better to be upper middle class and up now.

            Cars are just hilariously better now than then. My grandparents bought a brand-new Ford Galaxie in ’69 that I came home from the hospital in. The rear bumper *fell off in the driveway overnight* from rust when it was two years old.

        • 0 avatar
          Lorenzo

          Chryslers lasted that long. Look at the body and interior of this 51 year old car! I actually owned 1963 and 1973 Newports, both could have been driven to the junkyard after 27 and 24 years respectively.

          I counted eleven grease fittings under the hood of the ’63, and didn’t bother counting on the ’73. Both engines still ran strong, but were built for 33-cent gas. Do I even have to explain the durability of the heavy duty torqueflite?

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            They lasted that long in places with no road salt – everything does. The rest of the country, uh, no.

          • 0 avatar
            golden2husky

            C body Mopars were not bad on rust compared to most other cars. My Fury was almost 18 years old before some holes popped up in the rockers and that included a few upstate NY winters. These cars were very reliable – I only broke down once and a tap on the carb to free the float solved the flooding issue.

            The author states that slant sixes were available in these cars…not sure if that is true, at least for the Plymouth line. My owners’s manual shows four engines available in the 71-73 MY…318, 360, 400, 440. All great engines. And great transmissions too. And as an added bonus, the subframe/unit construction meant my Fury tipped the scales at 4000lbs. A comparable Impala had to weigh 600 lbs more. These cars were engineered better that the other full sizers out there.

      • 0 avatar

        Literally this. Dad could work 9-5 with benefits and be left alone on weekends and vacation unless the business burned down, mom was home, and you traded in every three years. Lease wasn’t a thing. It was different. Sorry Millenials, you are totally right on this one.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Well you cannot buy a full size sedan anymore unless you buy a Mercedes, BMW, or Audi except for maybe a Charger or 300 and most of those go for more than 30k. Also most of the middle class made enough and had more purchasing power then than they do today. There were no 84 month loans to extend the payment period to make vehicles more affordable. COVID-19 has helped to keep used vehicle prices up.

    • 0 avatar
      PeriSoft

      You can’t buy something that wastes 30″ of overhang and a thousand pounds of dead weight, but you can buy the capability.

      Newport:

      Front leg room: 42″
      Front shoulder room: 60″
      Rear leg room: 37″
      Trunk volume: 16.5 cubic feet
      Weight: 4100lbs
      Length: 220″

      2021 Sonata:

      Front leg room: 46″
      Front shoulder room: 58″
      Rear leg room: 35″
      Trunk volume: 16 cubic feet
      Weight: 3120lbs
      Length: 192″

      Modern mid-sizers are full size in all but name. And they do it with vastly better performance, triple the mileage, 1000lbs lower curb weight, and 30″ less of dead length, with 5x longer warranty coverage and 1/3rd lower inflation-adjusted base price. There is no rational metric by which current sedans are not absurdly superior.

  • avatar
    MoDo

    Surprised it avoided the demo derby, those cars are the #1 choice.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Also most of today’s new vehicles will not make it to 50 years and probably few will make it past 10 with the more complex electronics and computers. Peak reliability has probably past us with late 1990s thru early 2000s being among the best. Failure of most modern components and the expense of parts and labors along with more complexity will make many of today’s new vehicles not worth repairing beyond 10 years. Water pumps inside with timing chains and belts make repairs more expensive and make engine replacement and repair more expensive if these components fail. There are other components as well that in the past considered long term maintenance that have become harder to access and cost much much more in labor to replace because of the additional hours required to remove and replace.

    • 0 avatar
      PeriSoft

      If I was going to pick a vehicle infrastructure system to last 20 years between modern CAN-bus solid state and ’70s mechanical actuation, pneumatics, carbs, and early-stage electrics, I’m pretty sure I know what I’d pick.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      Who keeps a car for 50 years, though (or 20, for that matter?)? The overwhelming majority of car owners aren’t in it for the long haul (i.e., over 10 years). Therefore, manufacturers build cars that run flawlessly and with minimal maintenance for a shorter period of time, versus something that runs like crap for 50 years.

      It’s the market at work.

      • 0 avatar
        PeriSoft

        @FreedMike Bingo. When I buy a car, I’m buying capability for an expected horizon. Paying for enough quality to minimize expected depreciation loss is rational, but there’s a crossover point, and paying for the car to be usable 30 years after I’ve sold it would be extremely poor decisionmaking.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      Have to agree with PeriSoft on this.

      I’d much prefer the modern vehicle over these cars. I just threw away my grease gun because I realized I hadn’t used it in a couple decades, and it’s a messy thing to keep around. I’m not interested in going back to packing wheel bearings and ball joints, adjusting chokes, chasing vacuum lines, or tensioning belts by feel.

      This car’s presumed 52-year life far exceeds that of its peers, which were all scrapped by 1990.

      • 0 avatar
        PeriSoft

        People seem to forget about things like how a 5k-mile greasing interval was a big selling point in the ’50s and ’60s. You only need to take your car to the filling station to have the suspension greased every two months! Woo!

      • 0 avatar
        N8iveVA

        SCE: Funny you mention the grease gun. I’m cleaning stuff out ahead of a summer move and I just looked at my grease gun the other day and thought about it being 30 years old and I can’t remember what decade I last used it. Probably 90’s. Thanks. I’m going to throw it away today. :)

        • 0 avatar
          Art Vandelay

          I use the grease gun once a year on my 1985 John Deere lawn tractor when I change the oil and sharpen the blades.

          • 0 avatar
            jack4x

            My 2016 tractor still has grease zerks.

            I actually had to go buy a grease gun to service it; having had no need for one before.

            Add me to the list of those who appreciate older cars for their style and presence, but would take anything made in the 2010s over any other decade for long term ownership.

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      Most cars didn’t make it to 50 years in any era of the automobile. Honestly I’ll take figuring out how to repair solid state electronics (typically simple) over these. Sure, you can adapt aftermarket carbs and other solutions for those sorts of issues, but things like the terminal rust these cars are known for? Hard pass.

      Is there a rash of irreparable vehicles due to non availability of electronics components? I know it is a thing (early C5 Corvettes have a non serviceable and not available module that controls ABS and active handling), but even if it fails you simply lose a capability these old cars didn’t have anyway.

      I’ve had one ECU fail (A Toyota Land Cruiser). If I remember I reflowed the solder on a couple of components and it was fine.

      You have full on aftermarket ecus and controllers for a grand now from the likes of Holley…not some dude on the internet.

      Today’s cars will be just fine. If anything kills them it will be regulation, not electronics.

      • 0 avatar
        Arthur Dailey

        I have had 2 ECMs ‘fry’. One on a Hyundai that was less than a year old. Replaced under warranty. The other on a 10 year old Buick (3800). A relatively easy part to find, at that time.

    • 0 avatar
      eng_alvarado90

      I can think about another critical component that has become way more complex to access to compared to older cars: the fuel pump.
      I replaced a couple fuel pumps on my 1984 truck in less than 30 minutes because they were easily accessible right next to the rear wheel well.
      My 2014 truck has got the fuel pump integrated to the fuel tank and so does my 2012 car. Bummer…
      I agree on the late 90s/early 2000s vehicles being peak reliability while also being less complex and still fairly secure even by today’s standards.

      • 0 avatar
        golden2husky

        How about internal Ford water pumps? What a dumb idea. Regardless, modern cars have the potential for a vastly longer life then cars from the early 70s did. But imagine a car built like this old beast but with modern rust protection, and simple throttle body fuel injection. They truly would run nearly forever.

        As an old car owner – much older than most people even think of owning a car, I can say the issue with the new stuff will be electronics. Yes, I fixed the vacuum florescent display in my wife’s Buick by installing new resistors, a new thermal fuse in the Sable’s airbag control module. So it can be done. The cost for a new display or airbag module (both still available) are over $400. But those are volume cars. So, a module for a F-150 will probably always be available…but not on models with modest sales. Picture a failure of an early Cadillac CUE system – that would take out HVAC, radio, etc. all in one fell swoop.

      • 0 avatar
        golden2husky

        Regarding fuel pumps – it depends. Most GM w body cars and Mazdas to name a few – have a removable panel in the floor right over the pump. That makes a fuel pump an easy and clean job. For vehicles where you have to drop the tank you are certainly correct. Especially when you now are dealing with rusty tank straps, fuel and vapor lines….ugh.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Probably this car was able to avoid demo derby because it sat in someone’s barn or building for years and either the owner died or someone cleaned out the building and then decided to have it hauled off. If this car were a 2 door or covertible it might have been restored or sold to someone for restoration. It wouldn’t surprise me if the motor turned over.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    I didn’t know they were called “fuselage cars”, but I love the look on the 2-door versions more. Longest quarter panels in history, maybe.

    This one must be a recent entry to the ‘yard, as it’s not been picked over.

    • 0 avatar
      Featherston

      @ SCE to Aux – Compare this car to the previous-gen Chryslers (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chrysler_New_Yorker#/media/File:Chrysler_New_Yorker_Town_Sedan_1965.JPG) and, for example, a 707 (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_707#/media/File:Boeing_707-321B_Pan_Am_Freer.jpg).

    • 0 avatar
      3SpeedAutomatic

      Go to the below website for the full story on “Fuselage Cars”:
      Great source of background info:

      http://fuselage.de

  • avatar
    darisgin

    Ah, mem’ries, mem’ries. Gulf War I: Bought a ’76 Newport for $500 in Nashville, drove it to Airborne School the next day– about 400 miles! I had no idea whether I was gonna make it; scared all the way, adrenalized at *every* little sound. What was that?! Was that the water pump? Brake cylinder? A blown tire???

    Nope: She turned out to be a trooper. Would regularly ferry 7 soldiers from FTKCY to Nashville for a night out (good thing the roads were straight on the way back; sometimes we’d sleep it off across the street from the main gate in order to avoid Operation Spread Eagle).

    One time, the motor needed a little work. Took it to a shade-tree mechanic shop. The boys looked at it, looked at me, and said “You got a 400 in there. You wanna get rid of the 2-barrel? This thing could be a *monster*! (Sadly, a soldier ain’t sufficiently solvent.)

    Just prior to ETS, I drove over t U-Haul for a trailer hitch and trailer. At one point, the guy installing the hitch, from inside the trunk, said something like “These yours?” He pointed to a bunch of needles… “Uh, no? I guess I never looked into the trunk wells.” “Mmmmkay” he said (skeptically, in my ears).

    (In college, someone *gave* me a ’79 Newport with a 318, one of the best cars I ever owned–reliable, quiet, 20 mpg hwy, and my girlfriend could stretch out fully in the back and barely touch either side of the car. She’s my wife now, an’ lemme tell ya: today’s cars are frickin’ TINY! *sigh*)

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    I seriously doubt this car was driven for 50 years more likely it sat in a building for at least 30 years. I doubt I will ever again keep a vehicle for more than 10 years with one I kept for almost 21 years, another 17 years, 15 years, and 12 years. I don’t drive 15k miles a year anymore more like 3k so I do expect to get 10 years out of any vehicle. I would like any vehicle to last 10 years without major repairs. Most of these Chryslers would not have made it past 10 years if they were in the rustbelt. There is a happy medium between a vehicle lasting 50 years and one that falls apart before the ink is dry on the sales contract. Maybe if one has more money than what one knows what to do with you could buy a new vehicle every year and possibly one every few months. Back when this Chrysler was new most people kept their cars for 3 years and yes the vehicles would either rust out or require more maintenance but also people could afford to buy a new vehicle more often. There are a lot of car owners that once could afford new cars that have been priced out of new cars.

    I don’t want to daily drive a vehicle from the 70s or even the early 90s but I also don’t want a vehicle that is so complex that it requires thousands of dollars to maintain. ICE has reached the point where there is very little efficiencies to be gained without more complexity and more cost. At least EVs are less complex with less maintenance but replacement batteries are costly. My next new vehicle might be an EV.

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      From looking at the engine pic I’d say it has 67,000 miles on it, not 167,000 miles so, yeah this thing was parked for many years and even in the years that it was on the road it didn’t rack up many miles.

    • 0 avatar
      PeriSoft

      “but also people could afford to buy a new vehicle more often.”

      I suspect they did it because they had to, not because they had so much money that it wasn’t a big deal. They didn’t spend money on other stuff, like travel, eating out, 20 different streaming services, having houses with giant kitchens with modern-art-spec appliances, etc. People lived fairly simply in the ’60s and early ’70s, and that disposable income got poured into garbage cars that rusted their money away in three years. Not sure that really counts as victory!

      • 0 avatar
        Arthur Dailey

        To a degree. But remember that most blue collar jobs were secure, unionized positions, with company pensions. Working for a ‘good’ company was often more important than your education.

        I grew up in a ‘blue collar’ suburb. If the ‘husband’ got a job at GM, Honeywell, IBM, Alcan, SKF, Johns-Manville or similar large ‘secure’ companies prior to the changes created by the OPEC crisis, they could largely afford a single family home, a new car every 3-4 years, and to put their kids through college on a single income. They didn’t have to worry about saving so much because they expected a secure company pension when they retired after 30 years on the job.

      • 0 avatar
        Jeff S

        Yes people lived more simply but cars for the most part had annual style changes in the 50s, 60s, and 70s. It was more important to have the latest model car especially with annual model changes where most people could tell the difference between a 61 and a 62 Ford Galaxie. The new model year was a big deal. Those of us that are 50 or more years old remember the car dealers covering their windows and hiding the new models in back of lot before the official launch of a new model. It was a big big deal. Today annual model changes are a thing of the past and going to the car dealership to see the new models is for the most part nonexistent. Yes you are correct that we have more stuff–smart phones, big flat screen TV’s, streaming services, mega houses, and travel but having the latest new vehicle is not as important today as it once was. As for garbage cars most were not bad and could easily run for years. Many men did their own maintenance on their cars because it didn’t require expensive tools and there were no computers on cars. Not saying everything was better 50 years ago but you didn’t need an 84 month loan to buy a new vehicle. I would say that in another 50 years many people who will be 40 and younger will say that most of the vehicles of the 2020s were garbage and in many cases they would be correct because in comparison to technology 50 years from now today’s new vehicles will be primitive. One should always view things of the past in the context of their time and yes you can appreciate how today’s technology has made all our lives better.

        • 0 avatar
          Arthur Dailey

          @Jeff, I mostly agree. But you couldn’t get an 84 month loan because most 7 year old cars of that era would be worth very little. We used to pick up some now highly ‘vaunted’ muscle cars for $500 or less. And a great many cars back then didn’t even make it to 7 years on the road.

          If they did not rust out, it was considered a major accomplishment for one to make it past 100,000 miles.

  • avatar
    3SpeedAutomatic

    My best friend’s Mom drove one of these in the same color. Back seat big enough for an entire Little League Baseball team.

    His step Dad would drive with a cocktail (Bourbon & Coke) in the right hand and flick the ashes of his cigarette out the vent window with his left hand while moving at 75+ MPH on I-10 East heading east to the Gulf Coast. It was the late 60’s, you had to be there to understand!

    I guess that’s why I’m a big time Fuselage fan:

    http://fuselage.de

  • avatar
    ToolGuy

    Dumb question: What does the “SEL” control do on the AM radio?

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    SEL is the search button on the radio.

    • 0 avatar
      ToolGuy

      So it’s the tuning ‘knob’ – got it, thanks.

      On a 90’s Chrysler minivan, “SEL” button was used to set the clock.

      In 2021, pretty sure the “SEL” control orders a Ford or Hyundai trim level.

  • avatar

    Lots of this car are same as my college car, a Fury II with Commando V8. Stolen off boston streets, I’m sure the engine found a new life in a Valiant. Detroit steel by the yard. I owed a Scirocco after, and the contrast was…massive. On the plus side, at Malaise stoplights, my tank would almost always stomp the vette or faux fast car. 12 mpg ac off, 8 with it on, but you could ski off the dashboard.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    @Arthur Dailey–Depends on where you live as to how long a car would last. My parents got 12 years out of their 62 Chevy II and 64 Impala wagon but they did not have to contend with salt on the road. Driving both of them when I was a teenager neither car was unreliable and didn’t breakdown. They both used more gas but at $0.33 a gallon for full service gas and $0.17 to $0.19 a gallon for gas during a gas war and at the few self-service gas stations it was not a major factor. A 327 V8 Quadrajet Rochester in the 64 Impala was a very durable and quick engine for the time and the 194 cu inch 1 barrel I6 engine in the Chevy II was not that bad. Long term loans were not that common and even a 30 year mortgage was rare when most mortgages were 15 to 20 years. Getting into debt was much less common than it is today–it happened but it was not as acceptable as it is today. It was less common to have a 2 family income and was just the beginning of women’s rights and just before most women started to enter the workforce in any really large numbers. No disrespect to women but it was a different time and any real changes were just starting.

    Arthur there was more job security as you mention especially with a union job. If you wanted a car that would run beyond 100k you usually got a V8 GM, Ford, or Chrysler but it was unheard of for most 4 and 6 cylinders to go too much beyond 100k but you could overhaul an engine without too much expense or difficulty. You could buy a rebuilt engine from Sears or JC Whitney. There are pros and cons of each era including today but this Chrysler Newport would have been a good value and a very reliable car for its time. Could have done a lot worse than an American V8 rear wheel drive. Anyone for a Fiat or Renault Dauphine from 1969 during this time? If you wanted a simple reliable foreign made car you would be better off with a VW bug, Toyota Corolla, or Datsun which were good cars for the time.

    • 0 avatar
      Arthur Dailey

      Jeff don’t forget Chrysler’s 225 slant six which was legendary for its durability. The Japanese vehicles of that era were not long lived. But an air-cooled VW would put up with just about anything until it rusted out.

      While a v8 RWD domestic would generally have a robust drivetrain, unfortunately even if it did not rust out, in too many climates/urban areas a great many other parts would wear out until repairing it became too time consuming or uneconomical.

      Here in Canada the government guaranteed 25 year mortgages for most of the 1850s/60s.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Well all modern powertrains are longer lasting than those 40 to 50 years ago even the Japanese. Compared to a Fiat and a Renault even a 69 Toyota or Datsun was more reliable. The slant 6s were legendary. There were 25 year mortgages in the US but many mortgages were 15 to 20 years. My family had Chrysler products up until the early 60s and then it was GM until my mother bought a new 5th Avenue in 1984 which was her last car. I have had 3 Chevies, 2 Buicks, 1 Chrysler (my mother’s 5th Avenue), 3 Fords, 1 Mercury, and an assortment of Japanese vehicles. I would not have turned down a car like this Newport when I was a teenager which at that time would have been new. Chrysler products of this era had solid drivetrains but it was usually the bodies and the body hardware that were not that good. GM bodies for the most part were overall better than Chryslers. Virtually every component on modern vehicles goes through electrocoating (e-coat), in which entire vehicle bodies are submerged in zinc-phosphate tanks to impart ultra-thin layers of that crystalline coating on the metal. Cars in the 60s and 70s rusted because they did not have these coatings.

  • avatar
    Mike Beranek

    OMG I had a ’70 just like this. Pea-soup green and a hood so wide you could string up a net and play ping-pong.
    It had the 440 and was damn fast for a 2.5-ton car, but I don’t think it ever got better than 10 MPG.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    It is amazing how many old cars and trucks are discovered in barns and garages. Long forgotten like this old Chrysler until someone either dies or decides to clean out the clutter. I use to see many old cars and trucks out in fields or stuck in barns when I lived in the country. One of my neighbors that lived on a hill with a beautiful view of the Ohio River had a collection of old Fords like Model As, 49 thru 51 Fords, 60s Fords, and many others. He would never get rid of any old vehicle and when he added another old abandoned vehicle to the row of vehicles he would shove the oldest ones down the hill. There was another house in the country that had a collection of old 60s and 70s Mopar Muscle cars along with old Hudsons and Packards. Some of those Mopars ended up disappearing from the yard probably collectors bought them for parts since most of them were in bad enough shape to where they were only good for parts.

  • avatar
    JimC2

    I remember seeing these in the early 1980s, I mean this body style, and thinking the name sounded elegant (the mind of a child, ha ha). I don’t remember the last time I saw one in the wild though. Occasionally a collector will hang on to one and take care of it, which is a respectable and even admirable thing to do, but they’re pretty vanilla cars as classic cars go. It looks like Chrysler hasn’t recycled the name yet… hmm…

  • avatar
    mdoore

    In those days Bigger meant safer

  • avatar
    Newport 80

    It is really really sad to see somebody just gave up on this old girl personally I’m a Mopar guy I’ve got two of them my collection I have a 68 Newport and a 78 Cordova I can’t see them going to the crusher or sitting some junkyard. Sickens me and breaks my heart to see that rolling art.

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