Cheap 9-Seater! ’62 Chrysler Town and Country

With its sporty 300-like grille, four-door hardtop greenhouse, and (new for ’62) lack of fins, the Chrysler Newport offered high style for high rollers. This 1962 Chrysler Newport Town and Country (station wagon) in Thomaston, Connecticut appears to retain most of its original equipment in fairly good shape, though structural rust in the lower regions should concern any New England car-shopper. If this trim-laden behemoth is calling your name, the $2950 asking price here on craigslist.org will be just the beginning of a long journey.

Fin-free for the first time since ’55 or ’56 (depending on model), the 1962 Chryslers said goodbye to the ’50s and hello to Camelot. That rear bumper sends an imposing warning to would-be sheet-metal scrapers:  “Not so fast, Buster!” Let’s hope that left rear trim is inside; good luck finding one at your local swap-meet.

The “breathable vinyl” seems to have endured 50+ years in decent shape. Chrysler’s push-button transmission and Astrolab instrument cluster brought future technology to the forward-thinking buyer.

Of two 413 cid V8s available, this appears to be the “Firepower 340” named after its peak horsepower. The only mightier mill was the dual-carb Firepower 380 (thanks to wikipedia.org for some details). This motor turns but does not run. One of two grapefruit-sized road horns sits in front of the radiator, ready to peel paint off lowly 21-st century vehicles in your way. Much like barges on the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers of Pittsburgh, the Newport Town & Country charts its own course while lesser craft scramble to give way.

The Atradome globe certainly ranks among the coolest instrument panels ever. Check out Hemmings.com for more information. This technical marvel still packs the wow factor today. Some might count this gizmo alone as worth the price of admission. What will it take to get this derelict dinosaur road-worthy?

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Comments

  1. Keith

    Ah yes, another clapped out Mopar. Well at least it’s $2,950 instead of the normal Mopar Freak asking price of $29,500!

    Like 5
    • Chris M.

      Are you 9?

      Like 22
      • Mountainwoodie

        29. Why?

        I think we can all agree the “asks” have gotten kind of crazy. Mopar or no Mopar.

        As for this.what a fun project it would be. These are gorgeous wagons. check out the compass on the dash. Looks like a ‘Hull”. Bring a trailer AND a checkbook!

        Like 1
  2. Poncho

    Very Edsel like on the front end.

  3. PaulG

    This is a real bargain at this price and should be snatched up soon.

    These cars represented an era that was way cool…

    Like 12
  4. Poncho

    A real bargain for a paperweight, but my desk isn’t big enough.
    Overpriced ‘Yard Art’, or artificial reef donation? You decide.

    Like 5
  5. Poncho

    Nice gas pedal. that takes me back to the 70’s.

    Like 3
  6. David Zornig

    That is not a “sporty 300 like grille”.
    All the 300s had cross hair grilles with a medallion in the center.
    I would add an image, but Barn Finds seems to have removed that option.

    Like 7
    • Miguel

      I was going to say the same thing. This grille looks nothing like the 300 grille.

    • Otis

      Read and you will see it’s described as a “300 like grille”, not exactly the same. Same shape and overall design without the “cross hair” chrome part. Much “like” the 300.

      Like 8
      • Todd Fitch Staff

        Regarding the grille, I’ll tell you what… Show 1000 people the front end of both cars and ask them if one car looks like the other. For every one who says “Yes,” you pay me a dollar. For every one who says “No” I will pay you a dollar. All joking aside, though, in the articles, all the bold dark red words are links to pages with more details, in this article you can click on “300-like grille” above and see the 300 grille. Thanks everyone!

        Like 1
      • TheGasHole

        I’ll back Todd on this one. When i bought my 300G it had a Widsor grille due to the original 300G grille being broken. As a fun aside I located a replacement 300G grille at a paltry $1200.

  7. markp

    In its day, this luxury wagon would have been the envy of every Dad.

    Like 6
    • Miguel

      This is not a luxury wagon. This was the base model for that year.

  8. ccrvtt

    The current styling idiom of pregnant turtle SUVs is the logical historical progression from the station wagons of the ’50’s-’60’s-’70’s. At one point minivans looked like the heir-apparents but too many soccer moms felt stereotyped by them. The ‘S’ in SUV no longer stands for ‘Sport’ even if some buyers desperately cling to that illusion.

    Station wagons appealed to both men and women. They could be a daddy-car or a mommy-car, and the really status conscious got them with wood trim. Based on large sedans, they rode really well, were quiet, spacious, and guzzled gas. Cars like this Town & Country were elegant and worthy of admiration.

    My disclaimer: I’m definitely not a truck guy. I always felt sorry for the GM engineers who had to take a WT chassis and make it ride like a DeVille for the Cowboy Cadillac Suburbans and Tahoes. (Sort of like the Porsche guys who had to come up with brilliant engineering to make the inherently tail-heavy 356/911 handle without scaring the daylights out of you. But I digress…)

    I grew up with Ford Country Sedans – 1957, 1960, 1963; and Olds Vista Cruisers – 1965 & 1969. Mom hauled us kids around during the week. Dad strapped his fishing boat on top and used it on the weekend. The roof was low enough to do that.

    Enough nostalgia. One more rant: I hate SUVs. A lot of great engineering is going into making them work like a 535i but I feel like the lower, more carlike platforms are just better looking. That’s why it’s always a treat for me to see the last of the behemoth Buick Roadmaster wagons out on the interstate. They’re invariably driven by my fellow grayhairs, people who understand what true style is.

    Like 20
    • Mike

      I own a 1962 Chrysler Newport 9-pass. wagon AND a 1996 Roadmaster wagon, so I couldn’t agree more. :)

      Like 5
  9. Miguel

    I had a 1962 New Yorker wagon. That is one I definitely regret selling.

    It ended up in Sweden I think back in 1985.

    If I found a nice one again, I would buy it, but it has to have dual factory air like mine did.

    Like 3
    • Matt

      mine did Miguel, sold it two years ago to a guy in Michigan………mine was a new yorker with dual air and black………

  10. Rex Kahrs Member

    Some of those rear styling cues remind me of the amoeba/boomerang countertops of the era. Kinda funky. I love that dashboard, but did they get dusty or cloudy, and then were difficult to see through?

    Like 1
  11. Rosco

    The astradome instrument panel is one of the coolest ever. Might be difficult to clean but probably worth it. Expensive? Maybe.

    Like 4
  12. Gaspumpchas

    Love the styling. definitely unusual these days, needs to be brought back. Fill with kids and go for ice cream!! Good luck to the new owner!

    Cheers
    GPC

    Like 5
    • Howard Collins

      I own a Ford Flex that reminds me of the old wagons of yore

  13. Ken Carney

    Now there”s elegance for you! Aside from the Olds Vista Cruisers and Buick
    Sport Wagons, this would be the car I’d
    want! Wagons like this have always appealed to me. That hardtop styling is
    hard to beat. Oh, by the way, didn’t Tippi
    Hedrin and a bunch of school kids take
    cover in one of these in The Birds? If I
    wasn’t trying so hard to get a date for my
    birthday party this weekend, I’d be seriously considering how to buy this
    car! With a little coaxing, the 413 should
    fire right up and run fine. Just get it running and driving again and finish the
    rest while you can. I think it would look
    really sharp in Champagne Gold with that
    black interior. Add some real wire rims,
    and some Vogue tires, and my wagon
    fantasy would be complete.

    Like 4
  14. CCFisher

    If it helps, that bumper was used on the ’61 Plymouth wagons, ’62-64 Chrysler wagons, and ’62-64 Dodge 880 wagons. None of those are exactly plentiful, but it’s better than nothing.

    Like 3
  15. gary grossich

    Interesting that the rear bumper has the step for the rear seat on the passengers side, but is missing on the driver’s side. I wonder if the mounting hole for the step plate is covered up by that bumper sticker. I have a 62 Chrysler wagon parts car with the moulding that’s missing.

    Like 1
  16. Pete Phillips

    This is a Newport. It does not have a 413. The New Yorkers have the 413. The only engine you could get in a ’62 Newport was the 361. Several things send up red flags to me on this car. The “barefoot” gas pedal; the strange non-stock air cleaner; and that seat upholstery is not correct, either. I think the whole seat is out of something newer. It looks to me like some teen-aged would-be hot-rodder got hold of this car and ragged it out.

    Like 1
    • Mountainwoodie

      And it does have the transparent rainbow in the rear glass. So….. I’d guess it wasn’t a teenager as much as someone trying to funk-ify Dads wagon. Thats a great junkyard its sitting in. I think thats a 2 door ’54 Mercury or a ’53 Lincoln Premier next to it

      Like 1
      • Ron

        It also has a white mud flap on the drivers side front fender, the KID putting stuff on the ole mans car that he might not notice or care if he did,

    • Ron

      It is a Newport,

    • Ron

      It is a Newport, that is a Newport grille, as far as the other things you noted you are dead on with those too, ya got a good eye, Smith, ey’

    • Ron

      My comment was directed at you ( Pete Phillips ) Not Smith, you are exactly right on all of your points of contention, like Pistol Pete Maravich, you have a good eye, ey’

  17. Wayne

    I love Mopars and I love wagons but this one is way too far gone to save. It’s a 500.00 parts car at best!

  18. Racingpro56

    🎶I got me a Chrysler, It seats about twenty🎵

  19. Howard Collins

    This would make a great family cruiser! Give it some love, highlight the cool factor ( Headlights, dash, etc..). I would buy this in a heartbeat if I had the project room .

  20. Ken Smith

    For me, this is one of those “If Money Were No Object” items. Can picture this with new black paint, all lowered down with big black wheels and a Viper engine! What a mean street machine this cold be.

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