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25 Examples Left? 1955 Chrysler New Yorker

In today’s marketplace, a luxury SUV is seen by many to be the ultimate expression of wealth. The Escalade, Suburban, and Land Cruiser are all vehicles that will cost north of $100,000 to buy if you choose to purchase a new one off the lot, and it seems like there’s no shortage of customers willing to make that purchase across suburbia. Before the SUV, however, there was the station wagon, and before it became a laughingstock in the National Lampoon series of comedies, it was a statement just like the modern-day Cadillac. Find this rare 1955 Chrysler New Yorker station wagon here on Facebook Marketplace for $3,999.

If you’re like me and spend any amount of time watching the excellent TV drama Mad Men, you’ll inevitably see that the high-society housewives almost always drive some version of a station wagon with chrome and wood panel trim. When you realize the modern-day SUV is this same marketing ploy come full circle (you have the kids, you need a big, strong vehicle – oh, but you also need leather, satellite radio, and 3-D infrared cameras), it’s not really that surprising to see so many of these rigs plodding along in mall parking lots and the school pick-up line. This Chrysler New Yorker station wagon, however, did not exactly sell like hotcakes when new, with just over 1,000 (1,036, to be exact) ever made. The seller speculates only 25 or so are left.

Image courtesy of Curbside Classics

In addition to being on the upper end of the model lineup, the New Yorker station wagon was also handsomely equipped under the hood. A real-deal 331-cubic inch Hemi kicking out about 250 horsepower was found sitting pretty behind that handsome chrome bumper and grill, which was more than enough grunt to get the kids to school on-time. This also meant the New Yorker wagon was a pricey proposition for anyone considering taking one home off the lot, ringing in at $5,000 – in today’s money, that’s near $60,000. See? Nothing ever really changes. We’re on the same hamster wheel as they were in the 50s.

This New Yorker has been for sale for more than a few days, with the Facebook listing citing its online existence at 25 weeks. The seller notes that the main attraction, that beautiful Hemi, is long gone, along with the transmission. I’m sure at some point when station wagons went out of style but muscular Mopar V8s were still in style, this poor wagon gave up its powerplant without much of a fight. It does have rust and we know nothing about the interior condition, but for a wagon this rare, I’m not sure those things really matter. The question is whether the $3,999 asking price is realistic given there’s an empty space under the hood.

Comments

  1. Avatar photo Dave in Virginia

    If only I were 40 years younger. I usually prefer keeping things stock, but sourcing proper replacements for the missing drive train would be difficult, expensive, and more than the car is worth. I don’t generally like restomods, but if not rusted out, I think that would be the way to go with this one. I’d transplant the entire drive train from a wrecked Hellcat, along with disk brakes, air conditioning, and whatever else I wanted to make it a daily driver. Maybe a respray in the original colors, but keep it looking original from the outside. That should make a fun and unusual ride.

    Like 28
    • Avatar photo Rumpledoorskin

      But where on earth would you find a wrecked Hellcat? LOL

      Like 9
      • Avatar photo MLM

        There might be more than you think if was in the hands of a immature driver or hit by someone. No car is above being in an accident.

        Like 6
      • Avatar photo Will Fox

        Junkyards are fast getting crowded with them, as today’s punks steal and eventually wreck Hellcats when chased by cops.

        Like 4
    • Avatar photo Gary Jones

      An old School Hemi would fit nicely in that empty space…

      Like 3
      • Avatar photo stillrunners Member

        It had a 331 from the factory but mt 1956 Windsor wagon had the 331 poly. This one doesn’t show much by the way of pictures but the one shows some bad rust – on the tailgate. Mine was a fire priecent fire wagon with most all the fire stuff still on it. Running and moving – not stopping was a hard sale at the Pate Swap meet – think I got $1500 with a title.

        Like 1
    • Avatar photo Billy

      I feel the same way! Since I can’t be 40 years younger, I’m glad I was around when the automotive industry was building works of art. I was too young to drive but I was a little Gearhead. I feel sorry for the kids today, all they have are cars that look like used bars of soap built out of plastic. Unless you have an SUV cars are too u comfortable for long trips, and their so low to the ground you can’t see a thing when looking down the road. So sad!

      Like 0
  2. Avatar photo Gary Raymond Member

    Dang! Neat car…I’ve always been a fan of wagons ever since my first car, a ‘57 Buick Caballero wagon. This one looks pretty good on the outside (I think?), some pics of the interior would be nice.

    Like 10
    • Avatar photo Mark Switzer

      A ’55 Chrysler wagon and there’s only 25 remaining ? Personally , I wouldn’t want one due to the ” difficulty” of finding parts ! Imagine , needing a replacement door , you might have to travel out of state just for one part . I haven’t seen one of these rare wagons since the late sixties ! Most of those old Chryslers were probably junked years ago . Happy Motoring !

      Like 2
      • Avatar photo Harry Raymond Parent II

        Didn’t he fly a Beechcraft? With the ruddervator tail?

        Like 0
  3. Avatar photo mike danna

    I remember back in the 50’s there was a show called “Sky King” starring Kirby Grant who drove one in the show! It would be nice if someone restored this wagon back as original as possible or put in a 60’s Chrysler drivetrain!

    Like 16
    • Avatar photo al

      yes and sky kings daughter penny as a 10 year old I had a crush on her he had a plane and Chrysler wagon I can remember the show well thanks for the walk down memory lane

      Like 10
      • Avatar photo C DICKINSON

        The kids were niece and nephew, not daughter/son.

        Like 4
      • Avatar photo Rex Kahrs Member

        Jimmy Buffet mentions Sky and Penny in his song “Pencil Thin Moustache”.

        Like 4
    • Avatar photo Sam61

      Fast forward 20 years to “One Day at a Time”…Bonnie Franklin driving a similar beater wagon during the opening credits.

      Like 6
  4. Avatar photo Rick Stifel

    My dad bought a white one of these(might’ve been a 56 or 57) and drove his family of five across the US from Washington DC to Los Angeles. I think it took two weeks as we stopped at various touristy destinations. He had an aftermarket AC installed to cross the desert. To get home, we took the Santa Fe super chief to Chicago, then another overnight train back to DC. Quite an adventure in a huge comfortable car.
    A colleague of my dad’s flew his family out to LA, picked up the car and drove it back with his family.

    Like 14
  5. Avatar photo Joe Padavano

    The seller can speculate whatever he or she wants, but that’s just pulling a number from an orifice. There is no way to know how many are left. Yeah,there are historical averages for fleet survival rates (typically ~1% after 20 years), but that is only an average. The only certainty is that the number left is less than the number originally produced (except for rare musclecars, where typically 150% or more survive…).

    Like 19
  6. Avatar photo stillrunners Member

    It had a 331 from the factory but mt 1956 Windsor wagon had the 331 poly. This one doesn’t show much by the way of pictures but the one shows some bad rust – on the tailgate. Mine was a fire priecent fire wagon with most all the fire stuff still on it. Running and moving – not stopping was a hard sale at the Pate Swap meet – think I got $1500 with a title.

    Like 1
  7. Avatar photo Rex Kahrs Member

    I saw the Plymouth Suburban version of this car at a car show just today. It had been rat-rodded.

    This Chrysler just looks too rusted to find someone to bring it back. Anyone old enough to appreciate it would be too wise to attempt a restoration.

    Like 4
    • Avatar photo Matt

      I agree with rex. Really cool looking car but if you don’t think there’s not a quarter of a million bucks in body work on this car you crazy. My nephew does metal work in Florida on up to million dollar cars. I watched him do a 69 camera that was half this size and parts are aplenty and they had $250,000 in that car. The could have bought 3 premium camero’s for that price but wanted that car.
      I’m sure there’s a buyer out there for it at that price not knowing what they’re getting into. Oh yea, thats JUST body work not including EVERYTHING else this will need. If some regular guy buys it it will rot into the ground before it ever sees the road so I hope the right guy gets it that’s flush with money and gets it back on the road.

      Like 2
  8. Avatar photo Troy

    Wish there was some interior pictures. I think this would be a fun car to resto mod and just have fun with

    Like 3
  9. Avatar photo HoA Member

    That hemi “gone missing” when most of us were in diapers, with good intent, I’m sure, but not before amassing a bit more than 34,000 miles. Not many bought a car like this to just sit. Travel was on their minds, and travel it did, I bet. I always think an economical motor would be best, but this thing weighs more than any economical engine could handle, a top fuel dragster motor( kind of) is what was needed. If this was complete and running, with only minor repairs, be a hit. As is, sadly, I doubt anything will become of it

    Like 6
  10. Avatar photo jim

    Yep someone grabbed the hemi out of it and that is all they wanted and there it sets

    Like 3
  11. Avatar photo T. Mann Member

    “25 known to exist”

    Is that a guaranteed Fact?

    Like 1
  12. Avatar photo randall kenney

    Ive offered him full asking price and at first answered me quickly after offer heard nothing from him for two days so whats your opinion on these people that have something for sale then quit responding ?????—-MYSELF—I think its RUDE & DISRESPECTFUL

    Like 2
  13. Avatar photo poraig

    We had a ’54 when i was a kid, and it was sort of a hazard on the long drive to my grandparents because dudes would try to get my mom pull over so they could make an offer on the hemi; my bro slow rolled it trying to grab a dropped a root beer; old guy from tow truck threw a hook on it to right it, one door handle dented, one chrome strip fell off total damage.

    Like 0
  14. Avatar photo bone

    This car has been on and off Facebook for several years now ; unless there’s another rusted ,engineless gold Chrysler station wagon around. It looked really rusted back then and I’m sure its a lot worse now. Unless you had a really solid wagon that needed chrome and glass pieces, I doubt anyone’s going to attempt a restoration on it – and you have to wonder if the windows have been down on the front doors , or if they just did it to air the car out from the rodent damage

    Like 0
  15. Avatar photo Carbob Member

    Thanks to all the commentators who brought back the memories of the Sky King show. It was the highlight of my Saturday morning back in the 50’s. This is a neat old wagon but without the engine and transmission it isn’t worth half of what this seller is asking for.Note to the seller; FWIW here’s a little secret that makes it easier for potential buyers to see if the car is worth a go look see: show some pictures of the interior!! If you can’t be bothered to take more than four pictures then I ain’t gonna bother calling you.

    Like 2
  16. Avatar photo John Jasper

    I’d install an easier obtainable 340 or 440 from a wrecked Mopar.

    Like 1
  17. Avatar photo Paul Alexander

    Does the car come in the “permanent wheelie” condition, or do I have to purchase the thing they have it blocked up on, as well? What is going on?

    Like 0
  18. Avatar photo Bill McCoskey Member

    Looks like the same car that sat for years in Garrett Park, MD, same color, even the tailgate rust looks the same.

    Like 0

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