1977 Chrysler New Yorker: Talk Of The Town!

After listening to Jack Jones warble on about the 1977 New Yorker being the “Talk of The Town” while I was researching this car, I started looking even closer at this apparent survivor for flaws–and could find very few. It’s listed for sale here on craigslist for $8,000 and is located in Tacoma, Washington. Thanks to reader Rocco B. for sending us this terrific find!

The seller claims 38,465 miles on this “(un)molested” car and it sure looks the part. I suppose it’s possible that the paint may be original and that the original selling dealer’s decal is there on the left rear of the car–this sure would be a find if that’s the case! By 1977, in a largely futile effort to get the standard(!) 440 cubic inch V8 to have any kind of decent fuel economy, it had been fitted with Chrysler’s “Lean Burn” early computer engine control system. Although we can’t tell from the under hood pictures if the system is still there (many were removed). Perhaps you can? If you are interested in learning more about the Lean Burn system, check out this link.

This car really looks good (in 1970’s terms, anyway) in the brown with the unusual partial vinyl roof. Very much a product of it’s times!

Can’t you see this being in your parents’ living room rather than in the interior of this Chrysler? There’s not a lot of wear showing here, either. Perhaps the mileage is really that low?

With all the hoses and accouterments of the emissions, air conditioning, vacuum and induction systems, I’m surprised you can see that 440 under there at all! That’s a lot of stuff to cram into an engine compartment! It sure does look clean and original-ish though, doesn’t it? I’m going to go with the idea that it really is that low mileage and that the paint is original. It makes me happy! Actually, I can see this car being worth it if it really is as nice as it looks–but what do you think?

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Comments

  1. Howard A Member

    One of the last of the tanks, I believe ’78 was the last year for the big Chryslers. I heard the “Lean Burn” was a nightmare, and since this car is too old for most emission tests, I’d strip all that crap off, if you even could. Probably wouldn’t run at all without it. Before air travel was the mode of choice for cross country travel, this car was it. Truly, the end of an era. Very nice car. We’ll never see the likes of these again.

    • Ralph Robichaud

      And that is a good buy at $8k- no matter how you slice it. Want to be in the modern classic collector car category, it is it. Want to be in the retro trailer towing to see America, this is it. Want to be the Saturday/Sunday boulevard cruiser, it is it. Want to be noticed at the country club, this is it. want a reliable and safe 2nd car, this is it. Want a low priced dependable daily driver, this could be it… What a bargain at only $200 per year of its existence,,,,,,,,

      • Doug Trimble

        Actually there still isn’t really a good market for these cars NADA high retail is only $6300 . It should only fetch around $5500 . Unfortunately those of us that love them are few in numbers .

  2. charlie

    What can brown do for you?

    • Jeffro

      True story! I’d rather have that 70’s green than brown. Only thing I want brown is my bourbon.

      • John D

        That brown had a nice gold metal flake that could be brought out with a little aggressive buffing. I did several delivery clean ups that way.

        As far as the lean burn went, our mechanics were able to make them run well. We had to buy a $10,000 computer to tune it properly per the factory methods. That was a tune up computer that was pure crap. When we had the auction to clean out 90 years of accumulation after DaimlerChrysler took our franchise in their 2009 White House assisted bankruptcy, the auctioneer had trouble selling it.

  3. P2d

    Dollar a pound here?
    The low miles might be a direct result of the lean burn engine management.
    That from the seat though… Barca Lounger trim package.

  4. David W Member

    I think this car is actually located in Washington state. It’s posted for sale on Craigslist there in the town of Spanaway and the contact phone number is a Washington state area code. Great looking beast. All the old slang terms for big cars apply to this one, “land barge” etc. Now they’re gone, we miss them, but when they were new, not too many folks would pony up for these massive cars that got about 8-10 mpg. I agree with Howard, great cars for long trips on interstates. Not so great for big city driving and parallel parking.

  5. Racingpro56

    Big, bold and an impressive presence. This is the car a newly signed NFL or MLB rookie would buy with his new found wealth. The interior would do justice to a New Orleans house of ill repute. Unfortunately the “lean burn” version of the venerable 360 pr 440 was a nightmare. Still a beautiful car.

  6. 68 custom

    I think that you can pop a regular mopar distributor in there along with a spread bore Holley on this clean car, that plus a set of dual exhausts and you will have a very nice cruiser.

    Like 1
  7. Tonyf

    This vehicles lean burn system has been converted to electronic ignition. If you see the orange module mounted on the firewall with the four prong ballist resistor. Been working for dodge dealers for 30 years. We sold those kits over the counter for $160. back then. They were very easy to convert and they ran great. It was called Mopar performance kit .

    Like 1
    • Mark S

      Very true solved a lot of problems and I believe it even improved milage a bit. Lots of these big Mopars got converted, I believe one of there goals was to reduce NOX which is a major undesirable component in air pollution. I think if you were to buy this car it would be a great candidate for transplanting a modern hemi / transmission and all its systems into this car. JMHO😎

    • G 1

      Big blocks had electronic ignition (how it made spark) in 72. The rest of Chryslers engines in 73. The lean burn computer told it when to do it.

  8. Tonyf

    The kit also came with an electronic distributor and wiring .

  9. Todd Rouch

    I was had a 1977 Chrysler New Yorker Brougham. Mine was a 4 door, leather interior, lights galore. It had five ashtrays, with a cigar lighter, at each door, and then also one in the dash. The sound system was quite nice for it’s age, it had the standard 8-track. Mine was powered by a 400 c.i.. The carb was horrible, it would vapor lock, almost every day. It’s been the only vehicle I’ve owned that I had to replace the alternator 4 times on. But it was a gorgeous car, and rode on a cloud of air. And I was only the 2nd owner in 1990. Ha!! It was an improvement over my previous vehicle, a 1976 Chevrolet Corvette. After a month with the New Yorker, I traded it back for the Corvette, a much more dependable and efficient car.

  10. S Ryan

    AH. What a machine. Just think back. Fuel crunch, bad economy, high interest and on and on. But you could have driven a 2 door longer than a modern crew cab.
    Gotta love America.

  11. John D

    A beautiful car to drive with a better ride and better handling than its contempories from Lincoln and Cadillac. I had a six hour drive to college and I noticed all the women riding in the passenger seats all rode in the same position. A few years later, riding back from an auto auction in a Caddy passenger seat, I found myself twisted into the same uncomfortable position. I never had that problem in the Chrysler.

  12. Jason

    Already flagged for removal.

  13. Bob B
  14. John B

    If you can’t get your date to scoot in close on that front seat, you ain’t tryin’ very hard! Gotta love that big Carter thermoquad that these big boats had. Stomp the gas and Buhhhh-WAAAAAHH!!

    Like 1
    • Neal

      I think my mom had that carb setup in her ’79 scout with a 345 and 727 combination. She LOVED opening it up with a heavy foot to take on mustangs and camaros. She also loved hearing that sound which you so artfully reproduced in letters and which she used to imitate with her voice.

      Like 1
      • John B

        Without loud dual exhausts you actually got to hear the carb open up! Flip the air cleaner lid for even more fun. It just isn’t the same with modern EFI induction systems…man, I am getting old.

        Like 1
  15. Charles

    The electronic ignition conversion is the way to go! I found out the hard way on a Lean Burn equipped vehicle after the stupid thing burned holes in four pistons.

    These cars are awesome! Even though the 440 was a low compression de-tuned gas hog by the time this car was built, they were still torque monsters. People who towed large travel trailers would seek our a low mileage pristine example such as this as a tow vehicle. The unitized body had more strength than a modern pickup or suv. The 727 Trans was bullet proof, and most of these cars had Dana axles. They will float down the highway with an 8K trailer, and never break a sweat.

  16. KevinW

    Man, this car brings back memories! When in high school one of my friends inherited a blue version of this exact car. We came up with the great idea(young&dumb) of filling up the cavernous trunk with beer and ice. We were the most popular dudes at the parking lot were we hung out to watch the cruising!

  17. Tom Driscoll

    I love a big Broham! Chrysler (and AMC) had the nicest mag wheels for their time…

    • Woodie Man

      Spelling Nazi here…Brougham…..and Corinthian…that said the seventies were the pits for everything from cars to music but….I like the lines on this monster. I must be getting age appropriate to drive it!

      • Tom Driscoll

        slang
        slaNG/Submit
        noun
        1.
        a type of language that consists of words and phrases that are regarded as very informal, are more common in speech than writing, and are typically restricted to a particular context or group of people.

  18. Greg Member

    Is that the Carinthian leather Ricardo Montalbán advertised?

  19. charlie

    And the last of the Chrysler small cab, long trunk, cars, originally business coupes, if I had the time and money, I would buy one of each, starting with the ’38 or so. This would be the last of them.

  20. moosie Craig

    NICE !

  21. fish56

    My buddy owned a Newport, same vintage. Had a Navaho pattern for the split bench seating. Radio controlled by a foot switch. Eight track player, too. Yeah, ran like crap when damp but sure was a nice car to take the ladies out for a night on the town.

    Like 1
  22. Bryan

    This New Yorker St. Regis coupe is a beautiful car….I think the brown top, interior, and paint are flattering!

    As stated, Lean Burn can be easily bypassed by replacing the distributor and adding an electronic ignition module. Interestingly I’ve owned several mopars of this vintage and have never had problems with the Lean Burn system.

    I am not a fan of the Thermoquad carbs (thermobog). Tiny primaries and huge secondaries create a jekyll & Hyde quality: slow but somewhat economical if driven conservatively, loud and kinda faster when floored. I replace them with Edelbrocks or Holley carbs because the plastic bowls eventually crack or warp.

  23. Ken Aldrich

    No the lean burn has to have the carb replaced along with that other stuff you mentioned and you HAVE TO DO IT the car will and probably does run ľe the brown shit it looks like I’d go 4500 not a buck more these cars just didn’t run well and put gas in it it today can you say third mlrtgage?

  24. Ck

    Does it come with Captain Stubing?

    Like 1
  25. Michael

    We owned a ’74 Chrysler New Yorker Brougham with radial tire package. It handled great compared to contemporary American Cars, and got better gas mileage. It also had 4 wheel disc brakes. White Vinyl upholstery [similar to pictures here] with dual reclining front seats. A date wore brand new red slacks; after parking for a while, I discovered her red slacks had discolored the passenger seat. Thank goodness for Turtle-wax upholstery & vinyl cleaner. Been a fan ever since!

    • Bryan

      Actually, the extremely similar 74 or 75 Imperial would have been equipped with 4 – wheel disc brakes. This feature was dropped entirely when New Yorker survived Imperial’s demise and reigned supreme beginning in 1976. Though New Yorker didn’t inherit the Imperial’s 4-wheel disc brakes, it did inherit Imperial’s distinctive front and rear styling. Here’s what the 74 & 75 New Yorker looked like.

      Like 1
  26. Brad

    Working at a Chrysler/Plymouth dealership in 1981, I was given one of these to use as a demo for a week, while my new demo (a Plymouth Reliant) was being prepped . It was sooooo comfortable with the soft leather upholstery. I just loved this car, with all of the luxury amenities, and smooth, quiet ride. When I finally got my new Reliant and drove it for a couple of days, I asked the Manager if I could turn the Reliant in for the New Yorker. Unfortunately, I got stuck with the K car.

  27. Pappy2d

    Big block, 2 door hardtop. Acres of chrome. End of era. Extremely politically incorrect. It’s growing on me.
    Flip those whitewalls to the inside.
    Lose the trim rings and paint those factory rally wheels a dark graphite metallic.
    And, of course a dual exhaust with a balance tube and Dynomax super turbo mufflers.
    You’re the only one at the local cruise.

  28. David Miraglia

    one of my favorite 1970’s land barge designs, Second after the 1977 town car.
    Wish I had the money I would grab it.

  29. I.T. Guy

    One look under the hood and you immediately see the missing lean burn from the air cleaner, the orange ignition control box and ballast resistor on the firewall.

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