Harry Truman’s 1955 Chrysler New Yorker for sale: $83,500

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  • A restored 1955 Chrysler New Yorker that once belonged to President Harry Truman could be yours, if you don’t mind buying a non-driving vehicle.
  • Restorations have been done inside and out, including new exterior paint, lots of chrome accents, and a redone (but not currently running) 331 cubic-inch Hemi V-8 engine.
  • Truman reportedly drove this 1955 New Yorker on a 19-day road trip after leaving office. The trip was supposed to be low-key but turned into such a big story that it became the subject of an entire book in 2011.

    If you’ve ever been interested in owning a 1955 Chrysler New Yorker, but didn’t want just any version, we have news for you. There’s an example currently on sale that’s a real rarity in the motoring world: a car that not only belonged to a former president, but was also used by Harry Truman as his personal daily driver once he left office.

    Chrysler

    The presidential tender has a lot going for it, including the fact that it has been fully restored inside and out. Other “perks” include the restored 331-cubic-inch Hemi V-8 engine and a two-speed Powerflite automatic transmission that powers the rear wheels. Well, he did, anyway. The only “disadvantage” of this car is that it does not drive. For car collectors, this is really just a pro list.

    1955 chrysler new yorker owned by harry truman

    Chrysler

    1955 chrysler new yorker owned by harry truman

    Chrysler

    The list goes on, according to the sale description at Classic Auto Mall, which sells the vehicle. The New Yorker is painted black with chrome accents and decorative trim throughout. The seller claims that the steel panels are free of rust, although there are some “minor cracks” from previous restoration. Whitewall tires complete the classic exterior look.

    1955 chrysler new yorker owned by harry truman
    1955 chrysler new yorker owned by harry truman

    Chrysler

    The interior is covered in tan leather and fabric as well as, of course, more chrome. The swinging doors are “almost perfect” and the dash has all the 1950s analog dials and buttons you could dream of, including a dash-mounted shifter.

    Classic Auto Mall is asking $83,500 for the New Yorker, which is a presidential size jump over what these types of vehicles typically sell for. A non-running 1955 two-door New Yorker hardtop sold for $7,700 on Bring a Trailer in 2020, for example, while the most expensive New Yorker ever sold on this auction site (which, as Car and driverpart of Hearst Autos) was an example of a 1959 hardtop coupe that went for $43,500, also in 2020.

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    Last year, presidential historian Michael Beschloss posted the above image on Twitter of Truman in his New Yorker in 1953. Beschloss said the photo showed the former president – then just five months after leaving the White House – driving the car (presumably this exact same vehicle) taking part in what would end up being a 19-day road trip with his wife from Independence, Missouri, to the East Coast and back. The trip was supposed to be an under-the-radar romantic getaway to visit friends and see the sights, all without any Secret Service or media protection during the ride.

    A 2011 book by Matthew Algeo titled Harry Truman’s Excellent Adventure explain how this did not happen. “Truman’s plan to blend in went wonderfully wrong,” the editor said, thanks to “fellow diners, bellhops, taxi drivers, screaming teenagers at a Future Homemakers of America convention and a very fashionable Pennsylvania State Trooper, [who] all unknowingly conspired to blow his cover.” Classic Auto Mall says Truman also drove this car to his daughter’s wedding.

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