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-61 Chrysler Newport 361 with touchflite

A friend of mine owns one of these, but is not too happy with the transmission. When he starts it cold - whether he selects D, 1 or 2 - no go, but reverse works fine. If he let it idle for 10 - 15 minutes everything works perfect. Oil is new, don’t get dirty fast or have any bad smell to it. Close to nobody knows this transmission over here, neither what the problem is or where to get parts.
It is the original transmission. He has a -62 rebuilt transmission on the shelf, but it won’t fit due to differences to the crankshaft.

If the problem is outside of converter, can the intestines be transferred to the old one?

Can somebody explain, what/where is the probable cause of the problem?

Can somebody give an idea of where to get parts for transmission for decent money (well, it’s not gonna be cheap, I know that much)?

Any other good ideas?

I’ll post a picture of the car later, should it clarify the car in question.
Regards Klaus

You’ll want to post this on a Mopar forum, here’s one that has a pre-1962 discussion:
https://moparforums.com/forums/f16/

I think “Touchflite” is just a TorqueFlite with push buttons. It’s not a different transmission than what Chrysler was using for years. So the problem is with a TorqueFlite transmission, not a “Touchflite”.

The 1961 brochure doesn’t list a ‘Touchflite’ option.
http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/NA/Chrysler_and_Imperial/1961_Chrysler/1961_Chrysler_Brochure/1961%20Chrysler-14-15.html

Check the transmission fluid level first. Low fluid level will cause that symptom in automatics. Make sure you check it properly. On my truck’s Ford C4 the only way I can get an accurate and repeatable fluid level check is drive it for 15 minutes in around town driving so it is shifting through all the gears and has warmed up thoroughly, then park on a level surface and pull the tranny dipstick with the engine running. If I check it cold and the engine not running it shows it being over-filled. But it isn’t.

As a kid my family had a 1957 Windsor , looked sort of like this. I think that’s basically the same thing as a Newport. My dad would let me sit on his lap & push the transmission push-buttons, that’s my first car-related experience that I recall. Seems sort of unsafe now I think about it … lol …


As an aside asterix , I believe you hail from Europe so you may know this. I read a classic car magazine from Britain called “Practical Classics” and sometimes the writers use the term “rude health” . Like ‘My transmission was in rude health so I decided to take it for a spin’. I’m unsure what they are meaning. What does “rude health” mean exactly? Good condition? Bad condition? Iffy condition?

Well, despite my family’s English roots, I can’t claim to know whether “rude health” refers to “bad condition” or to “Iffy condition”, but I am confident that this term does not refer to “good condition”.
:thinking:

That makes sense from a logical view, but I don’t think that’s the usage in Britain. As applied to the context of the articles anyway it doesn’t seem to mean “bad condition” as they usually use that phrase before they take the car somewhere you wouldn’t take a car if it was in bad condition.

I’m guessing @anon86613489 is French, that’s the name of a French cartoon character.

Odds are age has (finally…) caught up with aged internal seals and it’s time for a rebuild.

A converter stall test could be performed to determine slippage and so on but that test could be iffy depending upon the person doing it. If they get a bit ham-footed so to speak the transmission could be finished off.

Next up would be various pressure checks such as line and govenor tests, etc.

I can’t speak as to whether or not the guts could be transferred. If I were a gambling man I’d say no they will not.

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This transmission has 2 band adjustments you should try before anything more drastic. One is external and the other one you have to remove the transmission pan for. You are using the right fluid I hope. The only correct modern fluid for this is ATF+4. I would try to look up the Procedure and torque settings for you but I wouldn’t know how to post the page. It would be found in the appropriate years Motor Repair Manual (US)

ATF+4 is backwards compatible with this automatic from 1961 . . . ?! :open_mouth:

Yes- ATF +4 is backwards compatible with any Torqueflight or Powerflite.back to 1955.

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Thanks a lot for the answers so far.

texases
I actually asked if it was a torqueflite, but he said touchflite. I’ll correct him and thanks for the links.

George_San_Jose1
He drove the car a lot this “summer” and did 4 oilchanges with ATF+4, in case it was dirt. He has a manual for the car so I believe it’s done properly.
I have been living in UK for 2 years, but I have never heard that term, but I think it would mean a bad condition of sorts

texases
I’m from Denmark, but my aching back and shoulder and also my good food-loving stomach would love to live in the warm southern France. At least we have some great potion here in Denmark - named Tuborg.

ok4450
More than likely You are right in all aspects, but parts have so far been close to impossible to find. His manual doesn’t give the specs for line and govenor test unfortunately and it is very hard to find a transmissionguy over here that knows anything about a transmission this old.

oldtimer_11
Interesting. that’ll be something to investigate. Yes, ATF+4. Could You provide a link to the Motor Repair Manual, 'cause when i try googling it, I get anything but what I look for.

Here’s a pic of the car in question:

Richard 001

Wow; what a beauty and a ragtop to boot!

You might try allpar.com for advice or parts.

There’s a wealth of info there on older Chrysler products.

Yes, she certainly is a beauty and I’m close to say that I’m proud that I loaned him the money to get that paint job done so he could get the rest done properly. And, yes, he is paying back the 7k USD no problem. He’s the kind of guy, where you’ll lay your life in his hands.

It should stay in good condition. There are only three or four days a year when the weather is good enough to drive it with the top down. :slightly_smiling_face:

The 60&61 Desoto & Chrysler were the best styled ‘fin’ cars, filled by the Studebaker Hawks and the 59 Caddy.

Here’s the definition of “rude health” according to the Collins Dictionary

If someone is in rude health, they are strong and healthy.
Example: He is in rude health and can cycle 40 or 50 miles non-stop.

https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/rude-health

Here’s to hoping everyone’s vehicle is in rude health today!!

Chrysler corporation (Chrysler, Dodge, and Plymouth) had some very unorthodox styling back in '61 and '62. Many people were turned off by it at the time.
Fast forward 50 years and it’s desireable as can be.

Nice color selection on that one by the way. :slight_smile: