Baby Blue Garage Find: 1991 Chrysler New Yorker

Talk about a car lost to the sands of time: this 1991 Chrysler New Yorker looks like it was hiding out in a small home that’s slated for renovation, and the seller elected to try and sell it to a deserving home versus just calling the scrap man. While not a particularly exceptional vehicle in any one category, it was a comfortable cruiser with a reliable Mitsubishi-derived V6 under the hood. The seller has listed the New Yorker here on Facebook Marketplace for $3,500 in West Townsend, Massachusetts.

Here’s the Chrysler when it was first yanked out of its long-term abode, clearly accumulating plenty of dust and dirt while indoors. These were enormously popular with the early bird special dinner crowd, so it’s not entirely hard to imagine that this New Yorker got parked when a grandparent gave up their keys. The hideaway headlights were a very big hit with older shoppers who remembered this design from the cars of their youth; no word on whether the door still flip open like they should.

Tufted leather and velour was all the rage in the 80s and 90s, especially in Chrysler products. Other makes like Toyota tried to emulate this upscale look in cars like the Cressida, but I will always associate this type of fabric with a Mopar vehicle. The seller’s car clearly wasn’t optioned to the hilt when new, what with the cloth interior and presumably standard analog gauges up front (a digital cluster was an option). Still, if you’re only after the heavily-cushioned ride, you’ll get that every time regardless of options.

The padded landau roof was another feature that, even in the early 90s, shoppers of a certain vintage still expected to see on their American pseudo-luxury cruiser. The seller doesn’t mention whether this car still runs, but for the asking price of $3,500 (a reduction from $5,500), I would absolutely assume it to be a runner. There is a small but growing faction of late GenXers and old millennials that remember these cars from their youth and are bringing them back to life – are you one of them?


  1. Cadmanls Member

    If it’s not too bad, throw a few bucks into it and drive the wheels off it. Getting hard to buy a good used car today. These go down the road with a nice comfy ride, only downside no history of maintenance. I know for a fact my grandfather didn’t bother to change his oil often.

    Like 6
  2. CarNutDan

    My grandfather wanted one of these when these were new, couldn’t afford it so he got a upscale dodge dynasty le in 1989 which was almost the same. I also had a 1990 plymouth acclaim in this color.

    Like 4
  3. PaulG

    I used to Dead-head a LOT of rental cars when these were new. Really nice cruisers and can pull a mean “Rockford “ turn!

    Like 5
  4. Shingo

    Reliable Mitsu V6 but totally unreliable Destructodrive errrrr Ultra Drive transmission.

    Like 7
  5. Conrad A

    I hate to admit it, but I’ve always had a soft spot for the soft riding American luxury cars of the past. I’ve admired these particular Chrysler products for that nice soft ride they offered, but in a size that was just big enough to make you feel secure on an expressway crowded with semi tractor trailers, yet small enough to park easily. Only problem I remember with these was that the automatic overdrive transmission was problematic, tending to lock up in high gear. The first few years they were out, no one seemed to be able to fix them, so it must have been a design flaw. Hopefully a fix is out all these years later…

    Like 5
    • Rick

      These cars and their Dynasty cousin were known for repeat muffler rust-out. One solution was install a Muffler Man special which tended to last a little longer. Or, you could install an OEM version, then find the low point of the muffler and drill a small pinhole into the outer shell to let condensation drain out.

      Like 4
      • Pastor Ron

        Yes, they had the mufflers too far back. This was especially a problem if all you drove was in short hops, Highway-driven cars were far less susceptible because the system heated and dried better.

        Like 2
  6. Paul in MA

    My parents bought a burgundy one of these when they retired. I can still feel the velour on my skin. It was the bounciest car and the transmission was horrible as I recall. Accelerating in it felt like you were on a boat going over chop

    Like 4
  7. Bunky

    Everything you find in a barn is not notable. Just sayin’

    • Lee I.

      Right on Bunky!

  8. Pastor Ron

    Oh yeah, I AM one of them. This was the last nice body style Chrysler ever made, and then it sold out to Europe. I have two Imperials of this vintage, and they are quite rare compared to widely-available New Yorkers and Fifth Avenues. Only about 37,000 Imperials were made across the 90-93 run, but they are the most comfortable cars I’ve ever driven that get more than 10mpg! I had a 3.3-equipped Dynasty that got 32mpg on the highway. It was cushy, too. Where have all the good cars gone? Thanks to Barn Finds, some are found! These things are surprisingly easy to repair and maintain, too. Just FYI, I get 22/28 in my Imperial, pretty good for something so solid, quiet, plush, and comfortable.

    Like 7
  9. Dwcisme

    This barge would have come with a 3.3 ohv engine rather than the 3.0 ohc Mitsubishi motor put in earlier cars. As for the tranny issues, higher mileage units might have been problems but after the first couple of years, I never saw a low mileage (under 50k) fail. The early failures I saw were due to the computers getting wet because some bright star decided to put them in the fender well on Dynasty’s. But, these were a totally unremarkable car.

    Like 3
  10. Brad460 Member

    As a gen xer in my early 50s, I love cars like this that had true luxury. I don’t consider modern cars with their hard, narrow seats to be luxurious at all. I also much prefer the cloth upholstery to leather. Warmer feeling and soft.

    I may be wrong but I think the 3.3L v6 was actually Chrysler developed and of pushrod design. I also remember lots of stories of unreliable Chrysler ultradrive transmissions, especially at first.

    This car is still worth cleaning up and preserving. I wish someone would still make a decent luxury car now that I could afford one. Of what’s made currently there really isn’t anything that appeals to me.

    Guess I will stick my pickups, 91 Sedan DeVille, and my 76 continental.

    Like 1
    • Pastor Ron

      Yes, the 3.3 and later 3.8 were both Chrysler engines. They were cast iron block with aluminum topside. The 42TE transmission was a sore point. The problem was a rush-to-market situation on order to meet the demand of lighter front drive cars with space limitations. There’s only so much you can cram into such a tiny space, and it wasn’t as well designed as it should have been (after all, in the 60s and 70s, Chrysler 904s and 727s were untouchable in reliability). The second-gen 42TE was far superior, and the earlier ones can be updated easily. My ’91 Imperial is still smooth as silk.The 3.0 was the Mitsubishi engine, all aluminum – and TERRIBLE. They were well-known for blowing head gaskets at 60k. For years, all I could find in junkyards were Dynastys with 3.0s. You are so right Brad – people today have no clue what luxury is; they often equate it with the number of silly gadgets the car has… no thank you!

  11. Troy

    Wish it was closer I would definitely be interested for a flipcar but going to get it or having it shipped would eat all the profit

  12. Vance

    My ex-wife’s grandfather bought one of these because he retired from MOPAR. His trade in was a 1970 Newport that was about ready to give up the ghost. It was an ok car for the time and was comfortable to drive. One night sitting by a bonfire and a few beers, I commented to my 2 brother-in-law’s, that it was a spruced up K-car, and I told them not to say a word to Rusty. Well, my big mouthed brother-in-law told him just that, and Rusty was mad as hell.My marriage lasted about a year later. He was a very nice guy, and I really liked him. Even though I was right, I shouldn’t have said a damn thing. Message to new husbands, keep your opinions to yourself, even if you’re 100 percent right. Life will be so much easier.

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