Desert Cruiser: 1964 Chrysler Newport

left front

This old Chrysler listed here on eBay has seen better days, but because El Paso, Texas is so dry it should not have much rust. I grew up in El Paso, so about all I can say about El Paso is that it is hot and dry without offending anyone who is unfortunate enough to live there. This Chrysler does not run or drive. At $3,600 at least the price is reasonable.

right front

The missing trim from this side may be difficult to find, but otherwise this Newport looks complete and original.

floor

Despite the seller’s claim, that floor shifter is obviously not a factory installation. There’s no daylight coming through the floor so that looks hopeful. That equalizer has escaped the 1970s.

right rear

Is there any hope for this old Chrysler? If the extra engine is good, would it be worth doing the mechanical work necessary to get this running again? It would be a nice driver. Perhaps one day the value might go up and it would be worth bodywork and paint. What do you think?

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Comments

  1. Mark S Member

    The cars from this era were not base/clear coat paint jobs. It is not that hard to spray single stage pant onto a car. As for controlling the paint area it is easy to build a paint booth using floor to ceiling tarps and a couple of scrubber fans to creat a cross flow. This car could be wearing a driver quality paint job for under1k. The best way to learn how to paint a car is to get in there and paint a car.

  2. PaulG

    Not sure where you saw the sellers claim of a factory installation of the shifter, but it does look like it was a factory 4 speed car (or at least a manual transmission) That in itself would make this a fairly rare car. Quite a find…

    • whippeteer

      I think he’s saying that the shift lever is not stock, but the standard transmission is.

  3. Leroy K

    I love the style of this thing.

  4. Ed P

    This looks like a good project car. I’m not sure about the price, but the body does look solid.

  5. geezerglide85

    Neat find. Most likely an original stick shift car. If you ordered a manual trans. from 1960 to at least 1964 Chryslers came with a floor mounted shifter. I saw a ’63 convertible at a show once that was a factory 3 speed car. It had a little round boot and a long curved shifter that looked like it came from J.C Whitney. I thought it was a backyard job until I talked with the owner. Also notice on this car the LH block off plate where the pushbuttons would be. Finding a ’62 with a 413 and a stick would be my dream car.

  6. Rick R

    The ’64 full line Chrysler catalog states that the standard 3 speed manual transmission, and the four speed is available with the 305 hp 383 or the 340 hp 413. Floor shifted Chryslers are unusual, but out there – I saw a ’62 Newport 4 door with a 3 on the floor in a junkyard once.

  7. Terry

    Rick R in the mid 70s I had a black 4 door Newport with a factory 3 speed on the floor. PO had installed a 383 magnum from a 68 Charger. That car ran like a scalded dog. Probably ended up in a yard somewhere in the twin cities.

  8. RNR

    Hey Terry – about the right timeframe, wrong part of the country. The yard I saw the ’62 Newport in was in the Canandaigua, NY area. In December ’79 I checked out a long closed yard listed in Hemmings as having been bought out with everything not sold ASAP going to the crusher. Looking for ’57 Chrysler stuff at the time – came up empty but there was a lot of cool stuff that hadn’t been picked over to see. The new yard owner pointed out the ’62 to me.

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