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Ready To Cruise! 1948 Chrysler New Yorker

I’ve opined about the current state of affairs of the Chrysler brand more times than I can recall. That being the case, I’ll dispense with beating that dead horse again and just live in the past while I write a review for this fine-looking 1948 Chrysler New Yorker Club Coupe. The text is light, but this coupe appears to be original and complete – it’s a very nice find, courtesy of Mitchell G. Located in Hanover, Pennsylvania, this New Yorker is available, here on craigslist where it can be yours for $9,800.

Chrysler occupied the luxury and near-luxury tiers for years, sort of like a Buick-Cadillac combination. The Imperial was Chrysler’s nonpareil (it didn’t become a separate brand until 1955) and the New Yorker, such as our subject car, topped Chrysler’s near-luxury category, overshadowing the Saratoga, Windsor, and Royal trim lines. Today’s find is one of 10K plus Club Coupes produced in ’48 and one of 130K Chrysler branded cars assembled in total that year, putting it in ninth place in the domestic production race.

Other than a faded finish, the exterior of this New Yorker is in straight and clean condition. The extensive trim is still in place and reveals a decent shine. How about that grille? It’s heavy and elaborate but it, and this New Yorker’s front end, in general, is, a, I’m not sure how to put my finger on it. Note the front bumper guards – there are three, one’s in the middle to protect that grille that has me unsettled. The seller mentions that he has a pair of fender skirts for those who may be interested in a more streamlined appearance.

Under the hood is a 135 HP, 323 CI, in-line, eight-cylinder “Spitfire” engine connected to a Fluid Drive semi-automatic transmission. The seller claims that this 87K mile Chrysler “runs and drives great“. It all looks complete though the air cleaner assembly is missing – hopefully just removed for the photo session.

The interior is a surprise as the seller claims that it’s original but it looks too good to my eyes to be 75 years (three-quarters of a century!) old. The green plaid upholstery is certainly cheery in a non-1948 sort of way but that elaborate instrument panel, with its heavy chromed, center-mounted radio speaker is right out of late ’40s central casting. Looking around, the environment doesn’t appear to need any intention.

So, all of this post-war Chrysler goodness for $9,800 – seems like a pretty good deal. But, what’s the demand for a fine old car like this these days? My guess is that it’s, unfortunately, not too strong. Still, someone will relish this New Yorker’s stolidity and renowned Chrysler engineering and decide to take it home. Will that somebody be you?


  1. Rex Kahrs Rex Kahrs Member

    I’ve always liked the rear treatment of the 48 Mopars. I like the front treatment of the ’48 Plymouth the best, but even this New Yorker, if a little too long of nose, is still a handsome car.

    Seems like a pretty nice price as well.

    Like 21
    • DRV

      Something this well preserved and driving is rare , especially considering it’s not hardly sought after, which to me all makes it very cool at this reasonable price! For what’s available as a driver this cheap.

      Like 15

    All true Rex, but I might have to re upholster the seat to something a little more …um …boring.

    Like 11
    • DRV

      The plaids were used on a lot of base models, especially Chrysler,(Scotsman) and then even in town and country models.
      If period JC Whitney covers it is even cooler!

      Like 8
  3. Tiger66

    Handsome old boat, but I’m biased because our family car when I was a wee lad was a 1948 Chrysler Windsor Traveler. That car had the 6 and the shorter wheelbase but was surprisingly roomy inside (the extra length of the 8-cylinder cars is all ahead of the cowl and due to the longer engine).

    Except for the Tenite plastic speaker grille, the dash is carried over from 1942, as the ’46-48s were basically warmed-over ’42s, which in turn were facelifted ’40s. I always thought the vertically oriented radio was cool (years before the C2 Corvette did the same thing).

    Strictly speaking, Fluid Drive was not a transmission but a fluid coupling that replaced the flywheel. The transmission behind it could be either the 3-speed manual or the semi-automatic depending on the car brand (the semi-auto wasn’t offered on Dodges but Fluid Drive was). Our Traveler had the semi-automatic.

    Like 15
  4. Bob

    Nice car, nice price but it might be hard to find people who know how to repair them.

    Like 6
    • Troy

      Oh the beauty of those engines they only need air, fuel ,and spark to run.

      Like 19
    • RoadDog

      I don’t think they make Haynes/Chilton manuals for them, either! 😋

      Like 0
  5. Cooter Cooter Member

    This is about as original as it gets and a driver also. Would be a great ride for a cross country road trip to include riding down Route 66!

    Like 19
    • RoadDog

      100th anniversary of the Route coming up in two years. Can you just imagine having this to cruise on it? People would think they were in a time warp!

      Like 1
  6. Fred W

    I started investigating the plaid seat covers when I found a set available for my ’54 Studebaker. Virtually ALL the aftermarket seatcovers back then (JC WHitney, etc) were plaid. So they are probably replacements.

    Like 13
    • Lance

      You could get them at Western Auto and Rayco . (Rayco remember them?)

      Like 10
  7. joseph d russo Member

    very nice car looks to be mostly original great price for a rare coupe in a world where people are asking way too much for nice old cars, the hobby has gotten out of control very refreshing to see this kind of car at this price….

    Like 12
  8. Frank Armstrong

    Hard to find a 75 year old car with all the factory components in place. The picture of the engine was a treat. You just don’t see components like the spark plug wire loom still installed under the hood. Just an honest old car at a very fair price.

    I would think there is leather under that plaid seat cover. If I owned this New Yorker, the first stop would be the upholstery shop.

    Like 11
  9. Troy

    Nice car, I wonder when the last time was it got driven any distance at highway speed? I say buy it fly out and drive it home, depending on where you live you can even cruise parts of route 66 would make for a fun road trip before the snow hits

    Like 6
  10. Jerry Jones

    Love it…nice to see one of that vintage not molested…On the other hand, I should talk …I have a 1949 Dodge 2 door sedan that I have molested the heck out of…318, 727, mustang II, 4 bar ….but still looks good going down the road..

    Like 7
    • Jay Martell

      Dig those fancy chrome knobs,got an unused cigarette lighter from a 49.Perk of working at UC lot.Cool classic NYer.

      Like 2
  11. Johnmloghry johnmloghry

    Dad had a 48 Dodge 4 door sedan back in the early 50’s. It was 6 cylinder 3 speed fluid drive (wet clutch as referred to by his mechanic). There were two things that constantly gave him trouble. 1) the emergency brake was on the drive shaft and often wouldn’t release, catching on fire a couple times. 2) the gas cap was electric release which many times wouldn’t open at the gas station and had to be pried open. I was a darker shade of green than this Chrysler. Comfortable riding car. This one is a beautiful example, and deserves a good home.

    God Bless America

    Like 13
  12. Tom Crum

    I have avoided buying a Chrysler product with the straight eight engine due to the number of rod bearing faiures caused by low oil pressure. Does anyone know of a fix that could be applied to these straight eight engines?

    Like 1
  13. Solosolo UK Solosolo UK Member

    My second ever car was a 1941 Chrysler Windsor 4 door. So wide that on a long weekend trip I would sleep on the front seat and my pal on the rear seat. Both of us were 6 foot plus but we slept like logs. Great car. Many years later I bought a 1978 New Yorker with the beautiful Corinthian leather upholstery. Also a great car and that V8 wouldn’t die, even after I drove it without water due to the radiator blowing it’s top, until the engine was knocking like a blacksmith. After repairing the radiator, topping up with water, it started first kick and ran like a Swiss watch. Ten days later I did a 1000 mile classic car tour without a hitch. Also a great car.

    Like 10
  14. Denny N. Member

    What a deal; not many New Yorkers had the coupe body style.

    I worked at an auto supply store in the mid-60s. We sold and installed seat covers like this. The plastic was called “Saran”. They wore really well.

    Like 6
  15. Billbowman

    Great looking car. Love to have it. Forget to 66. Pick it up in Hanover and drive old rt 30 west back to Pgh. It would be like going into a time warp.

    Like 5
  16. Gil Davis Tercenio

    Don’t forget Pep Boys!!!

    Like 1
  17. V12MECH

    Nice car, nice price, rod bearings? Who cares, drive it ’til the motor goes and drop in a V-8, auto of your choice and keep going.

    Like 4
  18. JGD

    A high school buddy bought a 1948 Windsor 2 door coupe in 1958. It had the same paint color as the sale car but, on a short nose version of the New Yorker body and had a I-6 vs. the New Yorker’s I-8 but shared the same 4 speed semi-auto fluid drive transmission. His Windsor had cloth interior. Chrysler offered their Highlander plaid wool and leather upholstery as an option on Windsor and New Yorker models through 1954. Our family’s ’54 Windsor Deluxe was black with a red Stewart plaid and dark red leather interior. The back of the front seat probably required the hide of a whole cow.

    Another classmate had a ’48 New Yorker Town & Country convertible. As I recall, there wasn’t much difference in performance between the Windsor and the New Yorker as the latter’s extra weight probably cancelled its additional horsepower. There didn’t seem to be much of a difference between 2 gear (low range 2) and 3rd gear (high range 1) on either model, maybe only 5 mph.

    Good car, good price. Ideal for a long haul road trip. If I were younger, this old gent would jump on it!

    Like 2

    Good morning Guys,
    I have commented on here so much about my feelings about sun visors and how I think they should all be on 18 wheelers. I was just wondering if maybe the owner would discount the price if he kept the sun visor and those things on the headlights, just wondering. Somebody might be more interested in buying.
    Everybody have a good day,

    Like 1
  20. Grape Ape

    Think it is a handsome vehicle, doesn’t seem outlandishly priced. Don’t understand the hate, oh well.

    Like 1
  21. Tom Crum

    These Silver Shadows have a most complex breaking system. They also have two carbs. Every owner runs a high risk of expensive repair bills. I am a little interested but then I see a Lincoln Mark VI and find that the Lincoln offers a higher level of luxury and dependability. I now have three of these Lincolns now. I now found a rust free 1978 Towncar that has been sitting covered up for 30 years near me. About to buy a 1962 Imperial 2 door Crown coupe out in the county, rust free California car.

    Like 0
  22. Kenneth L Gaar

    I think the last 2 comments are about something else, not the 48 Chrysler New Yorker. Anyway I see a 3d pedal, must be a manual on the column. Great looking car. Be fun to own. Perhaps a little high in ask though.

    Like 0

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