CC’s Best of 2023—CC Capsule: 1988 Chrysler New Yorker – Whence R/T Thou?

Hello, what’s this? There on the right headlight door, what is that? There isn’t-never-was a thing such as a Chrysler New Yorker R/T, and yet…voilà. For the matter of that, there weren’t any Chrysler R/T models in upper North America. Mexico had some, such as the Chrysler Spirit R/T, but up here? Silly rabbit; R/T is for Dodges.

I’m old; one way I can tell is because my birthday is this Friday. Another: my reflexive incredulity at collector licence plates on cars like this. The maths work out no matter how many times I run them, but a car of this age with collector plates just does not compute. And yet again…voilà.

Actually, the licence plates might give some context to the R/T badging. It might be a subtle little effyou to the province for their remarkably stringent standards for vehicles allowed to have collector plates. Strictly speaking, even just one spurious R/T badge disqualifies this car, and…

…this car has two of them—and you march yourself right back upstairs right this instant, young lady, and you do not come back down until you’ve had another very hard think about those chrome-chain licence plate frames with the pointy chrome screw covers!

Now, Chrysler made out like the Nyawkuh was all new (this phrase reliably sets my eyes rolling) in 1988:

But…well, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, now, I ask you! Could this, or could it not be one of those can-you-find-ten-differences exercises in an issue of Highlights For Children?

…well? Can you? I mean, take away the padded vinyl roof and a few other symptoms of late-stage Iaccosis, and overlook the vertical rather than horizontal taillights, and…well…don’t look now, but this Chrysler is somehow even boxier than that Aries. Okeh, look now:

All the glass is trying so –Valiantly– hard to be flat. And if the aft end of the greenhouse were to tip just another degree or three in its direction of travel, it might inspire talk of Breezeway backglasses in Monterey. H’mm. Maybe this is a carrying case for the Aries.

These 195/75R14 tires are the original size. They look miniature, but I miss tires with enough sidewall to cope with the unlikely event of a road having a curb.

I cupped my hand and leaned in to take this last pic. A young woman came out from a nearby business and said “Take all the pictures you want, but please don’t touch the car, okeh?”.

So clearly this collector-plate-wearin’ Chrysler New Yorker (Artie? Is that you?) is well-loved, and I appreciate that.