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1941 New Yorker Emblem


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Fluid drive is the coupling at the flywheel, a torque convertor that the clutch and pressure plate attach to. The semi-automatic transmission(M6) and manual transmission both used fluid drive. I had a 41 NY with a manual 3 speed and overdrive and it had fluid drive.

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The Chrysler fluid coupling is just that...

No torque multiplication is produced with the Chrysler Fluid Drive coupling sorry to say.

Chrysler first came out in 1951 with the Fluid Torque Drive....a rear torque converter coupling.

Excellent acceleration from a dead stop!

Unlike the typical Fluid Drive equipped Chrysler cars with the M4,5 and 6 hydraulically operated transmissions. 

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Fluid Drive (the coupling) was standard equipment on all 1941 New Yorkers with manual or Vacamatic transmission.  Does your horn button say Fluid Drive as well or is it plain?  Researching the 1941 Chrysler shop manual, it appears that the 8 cylinder cars used a three-speed transmission with overdrive.  Low gear was blocked out, so they drove the same as the 6 cylinder underdrive cars.  This transmission had an overdrive lockout knob which when pulled out locked out overdrive and the driver would have only second and third gear, with no automatic upshift.  The normal drive position was with the knob in.  Normal driving would be in the "Drive" position or third gear, starting in third and upshifting to third overdrive.  The shop manual further states that if the owner desires first gear, to remove the blocking plate.  This would provide a full three speed transmission with overdrive.  If you have a fluid coupling, I believe the low gear blocking plate has been removed.

 

Based on this, if your car has the fluid coupling, then having a rear bumper that says "Fluid Drive" is correct.

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I believe all 41 New Yorkers had Fluid Drive and a three-speed trans with blocked 1st plus automatic overdrive giving 4 forward ranges. Compared to the 40 NewYorkers, which I have owned since 1990 and which I believe all had FD plus automatic OD and a non-blocked 1st making them 5-speed "semi-automatics".

A 41 without FD would have been modified sometime in its life. Which probably is not that difficult.

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I would have a large brake pedal and a smaller clutch pedal.   The clutch pedal should say "Safety Clutch".  Also, you could start the car, put it in third, keep your foot on the brake and release the clutch.  The engine should not stall.  Good luck on your purchase.  They are great driving cars.

Edited by 61polara (see edit history)
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It seems that this car does have Fluid Drive with the Vacamatic transmission.  Will the shift leaver move into the first gear position?  If so, the first gear blocker plate has been removed.  This is not a problem.  The factory shop manual gives the procedure.  The car can be driven as a three speed manual or as a semi-automatic buy only using the third gear position.  However, the fluid drive cars used a smaller clutch than the true manual transmission MoPars.  Slipping the clutch to start the car rolling will decrease the life of the clutch.  It's better to release the clutch while the car is stopped and then accelerate.

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