Mayor Bill de Blasio told reporters 23 individuals were injured in the crash, including the deceased whom de Blasio said was a young woman.
He said there is no indication the accident was an act of terror.
Four of the victims are in critical condition, three are in serious condition and 15 others have minor injuries, according to Fire Department Commission Daniel Nigro.
Police identified the suspect as 26-year-old Richard Rojas, who was arrested on two prior occasions for driving while intoxicated. He is currently being transported to a facility to be tested for drugs and alcohol.
De Blasio said the suspect is a U.S. Navy veteran.
Photographs of the area appear to show a maroon sedan propped up on two wheels on the corner of West 45th St. and Broadway in the popular Times Square area.
An Anadolu Agency correspondent at the scene said at least two victims were carried into an ambulance on a stretcher, including one who was badly injured.
"It is believed to be an isolated incident, it remains under investigation," the department added on Twitter.