Home Car Stories One Owner 1973 CHRYSLER New Yorker- N E Hanson
1973 CHRYSLER New Yorker- N E Hanson PDF Print E-mail
Written by Double Dragon
Monday, 27 July 2015 18:20

1973 CHRYSLER New Yorker- N E Hanson


Writing and photography copyright D. S. Brown, story in captions copyright C. F.

73 chrysler new yorker az logo

This 1973 Chrysler New Yorker was bought in Arizona as a replacement for a 1972 Chrysler Newport which was totaled in January, 1974. Unlike its ill fated predecessor the 1973 replacement has led a charmed life for over 40 years. The dramatic tale behind this 1973 New Yorker is recounted by the adopted son of the owner of the car. The adopted son is shown here with the car.

73 chrysler new yorker az adopted son

The adopted son of N. E. Hanson was trained as a chef, butler and chauffeur. He describes his adopted father as a 'gentleman's gentleman' named N. E. Hanson. Hanson was a mining engineer from Elko, Nevada. In 1941 Hanson traveled north on a trip the adopted son has heard about many times. He recounts the tale of his adoption,

"April 1941, a 1929 Maxwell traveled from Elko, Nevada to Timmons Ontario in 19 days, carrying Hanson. Thirty days later he traveled the return route with a ten month old 'adopted' son."

The saga of the rutted mud roads, the narrow tires of the Maxwell, vehicle reliability, fuel availability, capped by the USA/Canada border crossing with a child made for a true adventure.

73 chrysler new yorker az front hood open

The demise of the 1972 Newport and purchase of the 1973 New Yorker came about at the beginning of 1974. The Newport name had been used on and off at Chrysler for decades. In 1961 the Newport name was revived and applied to a new 'entry level' low priced Chrysler full size car. When the 1972 model year came about the Newport had been a solid seller for a decade and was a well regarded full size comfortable cruiser. N. E. Hanson purchased a light blue 1972 Newport 4 door with a 400 engine. His adopted son chauffeured him to job sites in this new car but the car's days were numbered.

73 chrysler new yorker az trunk lock

The Chrysler New Yorker used the same bodyshell as the Newport but was a content laden high priced luxury car. For instance note the flip away cover for the rear trunk lock on the New Yorker in the photo above. Every detail of the New Yorker was embellished with style.

The 1972 and 1973 body styles are executed in the exciting 'fuselage' design used for all the full size Mopars. The fuselage cars debuted in 1969 as long, low and wide cars with curved bodysides and roofs which subtly mimicked the aerodynamic lines of a plane: the fuselage.

1972 was the final year for the loop style bumper up front. The new 5 MPH bumper laws necessitated a change to the heavier conventional bumper on the 1973 models. 1973 was the final year of the fuselage bodystyle. In 1974 a squarer lower body line combined with a larger greenhouse changed the looks of these cars to a boxier design.

In 1974 the two men were traveling through Canada in the 1972 Chrysler Newport. The adopted son remembers the day well,

"January 1974, Trans Canada highway, east bound, in a ground drift blizzard, 2 PM, near Belle Plaine Saskatchewan, at the Calium plant access road south entrance. The whiteout is wind driven from the south, with intermittent glassy, frozen asphalt visible in the calm between wind bursts. The driver, the adopted boy, now 33, the passenger Hanson the engineer, the car a 1972 Chrysler Newport, 400 CID, 4 door sedan. A substantial snow car..The traffic too heavy for a Tuesday, too fast for a blizzard. The tail lights in front light up the airborne snow crystals to a sheet of red."

"The 1972 Newport glides right without braking to drive the shoulder and avoid the pile up in both east bound lanes of telescoped cars, half tons and cattle liners that have collided in the storm. Maintaining soft throttle pressure the young man eases the heavy sedan past the long line of wrecks. Crawling along the broad corrugated asphalt shoulder he passes the extended pile up of traffic on the right. Keeping traction and maintaining momentum without sliding into the ditch he holds a steady course. An iron grip on the steering wheel, with nerves of steel, willing the car to stay planted the duo safely execute the gauntlet. The howling wind has not subsided, but the resistance caused by the carnage on their left creates a vision tunnel for the straight line of travel."

"Imprints in the ditch, and skid marks that the two observed painted a picture that lead them to believe a cattle liner laying on it's side at the east end of the pile up was blocking both lanes. Traffic behind simply ran into the overturned rig. Like dominoes the snow blinded vehicles piled up in an instant."

"To stop to help in a blizzard is insane. To travel to a phone is wise. The two travel to Belle Plaine cafe, two miles, just past the overpass. While in the process of phoning the RCMP from the cafe and warming up with hot chocolate at the window we watched the storm."

The irony of this story is that the 1972 Newport emerged unscathed without a scratch but after so adeptly avoiding a wreck it was all for naught. As the adopted son tells us,

"A west bound semi entered the gas station property out of control, avoided the pump island, and telescoped the Newport square on the front. The semi's velocity lifted the Newport and carried it out of the parking area onto the highway as the driver struggled to control the fishtailing trailer. Westbound he corrected hard left, soft right, hard left, then flipped. The Chrysler still attached sliding to rest in the meridian with the rig plowing the deep snow filled ditch."

"The young man and the engineer study each other, deeply, quietly, eyes tender, stomachs churning, thankful to be alive."

On January 14, 1974 back down in their home in Arizona it was necessary to replace the destroyed Newport. N. E. Hanson could no longer drive, but he purchased a brand new 1973 Chrysler New Yorker 4 door. Hanson selected the same colour as the old Newport and same 4 door body style but by jumping up from the Newport model to New Yorker he had just traversed a giant distance in quality and luxury.

The New Yorker is already a high end car but it was ordered with a raft of options: 440 engine, automatic trans, power steering, power brakes, power seats, power windows, and cruise control.

The young man continued to drive for Hanson until his passing. He tells us that the car was "dependable, trouble free, except for the Thermoquad carburetor."

The 1973 New Yorker is still registered to N. E. Hanson.

The young man drivers the car on occasion. All the original paperwork was saved including the canceled cheque, bill of sale, build sheet and SMRP. The mileage sits at 66,000 miles as of 2015.

The pristine, original, well cared for vehicle has been a show winner in Arizona, Utah, Oregon, Alberta and British Columbia. Most recent trophy was scored in Langley, BC in the July 2015, Mopar Madness show.

73 chrysler new yorker az rear

Last Updated ( Friday, 19 March 2021 20:01 )