Chrysler by Chrysler CH

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Chrysler by Chrysler CH

1971 - 1973
Hemi 6 & V8
256ci Hemi & 360ci V8
152kW Hemi 265/ 190kW 360ci V8
3 spd. TorqueFlite auto
Top Speed:
109 mph / 175 km/h (V8)
Number Built:
4 star
Chrysler Valiant VH
Chrysler by Chrysler CH
Reviewed by Unique Cars and Parts
Our Rating: 4


The Chrysler by Chrysler CH model was released in November 1971 in both two and four door models. Released as a replacement to the ever popular VIP model, the Chrysler CH moved even further up the luxury ladder, and was often described as a “limousine”.

Its origins were obviously from the VH range, however there were significant changes taken to ensure it was in a class of its own. The front end treatment came courtesy of the US Dodge, while the floor-pan from the Valiant Hardtop was used, giving the big Chrysler an overall length a fraction under 5000mm (196.6 inches) and wheelbase of 2900mm (115 inches).

The side indicator/parking light setup was removed, and the bumpers extended upward to give a stronger visual appearance while adding to the bright-work. The grille incorporated twin headlights, while at the rear a horizontal tail-light assembly incorporated stop, turn signal and reversing lights in a wrap-around style.

Naturally the standard equipment list was long and detailed; it included power assisted steering and front disc brakes, tinted power operated windows, push button radio with power antenna, a carpeted boot, courtesy lighting throughout including the provision of adjustable reading lights for the rear passengers.

Significant attention was also taken to reduce NVH, particularly in regard to the fitment of extra soundproofing material. You could option the car with an electric power seat adjuster, allowing the driver to tilt the seat or move it backward and forward, up and down, all for a modest $125 premium.

The only other options any purchaser needed to consider was air-conditioning, an auto-search radio combined with stereo tape player and vinyl roof for the sedan models (the vinyl roof coming standard on the Hardtop model). The vinyl roof was available in three colours; black, parchment and brown Paisley.

A feature that is fitted to even the most utilitarian cars of today, but was a marvel back in 1971, was the illuminated ignition keyhole light fitted to the Chrysler. Activated after opening the drivers door, it would remain on for 30 seconds. The front seats were also more upmarket than the lesser Valiant models, although Chrysler chose to use a split-bench design rather than individual bucket seats.

The New 360 V8

Both the sedan and Hardtop versions could be ordered with a choice of 265 Hemi, through to the newly introduced “360” V8, this stonking 5.9 litre unit being rated at 190kW (255 bhp) and was manufactured at Chrysler’s Lonsdale (South Australia) facility. The 360 was a further development of the Fireball 318, the increase in power and size gained by using a larger bore and stroke, while the fitment of a two-barrel carburettor ensured the engine offered better performance, and worse economy if pushed hard. Whichever engine was chosen, Chrysler then mated it to an imported “TorqueFlite” three speed automatic transmission, the locally manufactured version deemed less smooth.

In every way the Chrysler by Chrysler was a worth competitor to the competition. It beat Ford’s ZF Fairlane to market by almost five months, and came fitted with much more equipment than the General’s Statesman, the latter also not being afforded the option of a 2 door model. The motoring press of the day were quick to declare the new model the “King of the Prestige” of the Big Three manufacturers. The base price for the six cylinder version Chrysler by Chrysler was $4895, rising to $5872 for the fully optioned V8. The 360 V8 was a $200 option. Today these cars are becoming rare, and are keenly sought by collectors and Chrysler fans, they representing the halcyon days of the marque in a style no other could hope to match.

The Chrysler brochure for the Chrysler by Chrysler stated the following; "Over the past four years, the full resources of Chrysler Australia have been directed toward a very special goal. To build Australia’s Ultimate Motor Car. The Chrysler is that car. We do not discuss here, the merits of owning a great luxury car. We assume you have already reached that understanding. Instead we simply list the main features:"

Exterior styling:

  1. Tasteful, aerodynamic wedge styling in a full limousine size.
  2. Distinctive looped front bumper, completely enclosing dual headlamps
  3. Formal roof covering of paisley patterned brown vinyl, leather-grain black or parchment (Standard Hardtop, optional sedan)
  4. Elegant hand-painted coachline along the full length to enhance the Chrysler’s shape
  5. One piece wrap around rear bumper incorporates tail lamp grouping. Side-marker lamps have inlaid castle emblem.

Interior styling:

  1. Woven nylon brocade upholstery in Interlaken pattern.
  2. Comprehensive instrumentation including ammeter and clock, deep set in Carpathian elm panelling
  3. Spacious interior dimensions: Legroom front 40.34”; rear, 38.25” minimum. Head-room front, 39”; rear, 38”. Shoulder room, front and rear, 59.2”

Comfort items:

  1. Exclusive 50/50 split front seat design is a Chrysler first. Can be used as a groad one-piece bench seat, or with twin centre arm rests lowered, as two independent “arm chair buckets”. Each seat has its own armrest, is independently adjustable for legroom and angle of recline.
  2. Full width rear seat with fold down centre arm rest.
  3. Specially moulded loop pile carpeting throughout. Carpeted boot and spare wheel.
  4. Standard 13 transistor push button radio
  5. Options of Airtemp air-conditioning, Searchtune radio,, with stereo cassette tape player.

Convenience items:

  1. Power operated windows, power disc brakes and power radio antenna. Co-axial steering with built in “road feel”
  2. Illuminated boot, glove box and ash receiver. Twin rear compartment reading lamps, time delay ignition light, 4 door courtesy switches, fender indicator lights
  3. Deep, jet aircraft type vinyl pockets on the rear of the front seats for rear passenger stowage.
  4. Seat belts for all passengers. Front seat harnesses are linked to automatic retractors.
  5. Remote control exterior rear view mirror. Prismatic day/night interior rear view mirror.
  6. Elegant leather-grain inside door pull handles. Flush mounted pull-type exterior door handles.
  7. Anti-theft steering column ignition lock.


  1. 360 cubic inch Chrysler V8 developing 255 brake horsepower at 4,400 revolutions per minute. Or 265 cubic inch displacement Hemi six cylinder.
  2. Smooth 3-speed column mounted “TorqueFlite” automatic transmission.
  3. Torsion bar front suspension with anti-lean sway bar. 4-leaf semi elliptic spring rear suspension with isolators for noise reduction.
  4. Unibody construction using 8,000 individual welds for enormous strength and silence

Quality Control:

  1. Double thickness paint-work and sound insulation throughout.
  2. 11 additional inspectors devote full time to performing 140 overlapping quality control checks.
  3. A 12 mile open road test is carried out in addition to the normal factory road test.

Visitor Rating:

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Also see:

Valiant Colour Codes
Valiant Option Codes
Valiant VH/CH Specifications
Chrysler Valiant History
Reader Reviews page 1 of 1
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Posted Recently
Hi, Ive dont know alot about the car, I just know it is Crysler by crysler V8 two door, Hard black top. So anyway i was told this car was used in magazines and was the orignal promotion car for sales. Would anyone know where i could find orginal sales promo adds for cryslers in 70tys Please!
Posted Recently
I worked at CAL back when the Chrysler by Chrysler was produced. Couple of things: at one time the marketing men decided they should be able to provide a vehicle to customer spec [colour, trim, eng/trans spec, etc] from stock, so there were a huge number built & sitting on the grass, one of every combination. Unbelievable in this day of rationalisation & lean production. The other was the Chief Engineer of the day, Walt McPherson, drove one and had crossply tyres for around town use, but had steel belt radials fitted for driving outside the metro area. He didn't like the ride characteristics of the radials. The 360 was great fun to drive, altho it was deliberately built with ride & handling moved to the 'soft & somewhat floaty' end of the scale that passed for luxury in those days. Despite that we matched the SA Police driver training lap times [with HQ's to be fair, pre RTS] at Adelaide International Raceway, but that's another story in itself.
Posted Recently
I have a 1975 cj Chrysler by Chrysler 360 v8 sedan, 133 thousand original kms, in mint condition. I have allways wanted one since i was a kid, and when i found this one, i had to have it!!
personally, they werent made as well as a statesman or fairlane, but oozed more character. The 360 is a torque monster with almost 500nm at 2700rpm and 190kw, the figures were impressive for 1975.
I love mine to bits!
Leo Notarianni
Posted Recently
The CH Chrysler by Chrysler was the pentastars answer to the Holden HQ Statesman DeVille and Ford's Fairlane 500(ZD,ZF)and was obviously much better equipped, meaning that in reality it preceded the idea of Fords LTD and the Caprice from the General by several years. I also think it was the most convincing in being a luxury car of the Big Three in 1972. The ZD although considered to be very good looking was dated by then, and its successor the ZF looking much too similar to the XA Falcon,the HQ Statesman although flaunting modern lines,lacked the integrated look of the Chrysler.The hardtop in particular being a very attractive car with flowing lines, and the usual Chrysler prestigous style was very apparant. My father had a Chrysler Valiant VH Regal Hemi 265 during the seventies, it was smooth poweful very quick,luxurious(for its era) reliable and not all that expensive to run. It had more of quality feel than its rivals the HQ Holden Premier and the XA Ford Fairmont and the extra initial cost when new was justified. The Chrysler by Chrysler, although being more slightly more expensive than the rival Statesman DeVille and Ford Fairlane 500, was much more comprehensively equipped. The only faults i can think of is the lack of full flow ventilation and that its difficult to understand why the 360 V8 didnt come with a HighPerformance option of a 4BBL when Chrysler had made this option available to the VG Pacer a year earlier. This would have made it have more of an edge over its biggest engined rivals the Statesman with the optional Chev 350,and the Fords optional Cleveland 351.Perhaps the Pentastar was content in giving the performance leadership to the Valiant Charger(RT), the Pacer and really any of the larger Hemi engined vehicles at the time, which were all much more performance orientated than any of its six cylinder rivals. I think the Chrysler by Chrysler is an overlooked luxury car of its time and marked a turning point in the australian car industry when buyers were given the opportunity to purchase a true luxury car for the first time. Historians usually credit the ZA Fairlane (1967) and comedians might mention the bootilicious Brougham(1968)but i believe although the Fairlane set the benchmark for adding length to the wheelbase,adding some features,and making some changes to the styling to give the ford an upmarket look, and GMH had made the out of proportion Brougham quite lavish with its Brocade trim, and extra interior lights, neither of GM nor Ford really had a fully equipped luxury car until the launch of the LTD and the HJ Caprice introduced in October 1974
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