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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-21-2007, 10:34 AM Thread Starter
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Picture History: Chrysler 300 Letter Cars

The Chrysler 300 letters cars.

1955-65 300's, 1970 Hurst 300, 1991 300 concept, 1999 300 M, 2005 300C / SRT.




1955 Chrysler C 300 (the C was for Coupe). My favorite of all the 300 letter cars.




The 1955 also looks good in what we call Cool Vanilla today.


And Black on the 1955 C 300.


1956 300 B. The 55 and the 56 share the same body and style. The only difference was the B added to the emblems. You can see the small red B added to the lower half of the front emblem.


You can see the B better on the rear emblem of this 56 300 B.


1957 300 C. The body style changed with the introduction of the 57 300 C. This was the first year that a rag top was offered on a 300 as well.


The modern day 300 C gets its styling cues from the 1957 300 C.


This was the first year Chrysler started using the American flag colors on there emblems and then adding the letter of the car (C). This would carry over to the remaining letter cars.


Check out this custom 57 300 C that was in Mopars booth at 06 SEMA.




They did not restore the stock motor, they opted for something with a little more giddy up.


1958 300 D. This year letter car shared the same styling and design as the 1957 300C. Also looked great as a rag top.


The 1958 300 D was also the first year Chrysler was testing Fuel Injection. The 1958 300 D FI (fuel injection) model is the rarest of all the letter cars to own. Only 16 were ordered and almost all of these were later recalled to have carburetors fitted. This was however the first use of a computer in a Chrysler product.

This is the special emblem they had made for the fuel injected letter cars. Even harder to find one of those today.


1959 300 E. the 300 E shares similar styling and design with the 57 C and 58 D. This is the first year they changed the location of the 300 side emblem. 57 and 58 the 300 emblem was towards the back of the car. The 59 E now has the emblem towards the middle/front of the car.



This is also my favorite grille they produced. All the 59 E's, no matter what color paint the car was, got this red grille.


1960 300 F. The bodywork was also redone for 1960, using Chrysler's new lightweight unibody construction and given sharper-edged styling with outward-tilting fins that were visually separated from sides.


The 1961 300 G saw another restyle. The grille, formerly wider at the bottom than the top, was inverted; the quad headlights, formerly side-by-side, were arranged in angled fashion, inward at the bottom.


The 1962 300H. The fins were gone after stylist Virgil Exner left Chrysler. Gone, too, was the letter series' unique place in the Chrysler lineup; there was now a whole Chrysler 300 series, of which the 300H was but the top model. Externally there was little difference between the 300H and the plain 300(except for a "300H" badge on the driver's side of the trunk), and many of the 300H's features could be ordered as options on the other models.


The 1963 300 J. Further restyling for 1963's 300 J (the letter "I" was skipped) left the car with a smoother, more angular 1960s look.


The 1964 300 K. The convertible returned for 1964's 300 K. A 413 Wedge with a single 4-barrel carburetor, a regular intake manifold, and 360 hp (268 kW) was the new standard engine. Leather upholstery was no longer standard either. All this reduced the baseline price by over a thousand dollars, and sales responded with the largest total ever; 3,022 coupes and 625 convertibles.


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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-21-2007, 10:35 AM Thread Starter
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The 1965 300 L. The 300 L was the final year of the traditional letter series cars (1955-65). A complete restyle brought a sleek mid-1960s linear look to the cars, and dropped the panoramic windshield that had disappeared from other Chrysler models in 1961.

Practically every feature on the 300L could be ordered as an option on the regular 300; the only absolute difference was the '300L' badges. 2,405 coupes and 440 convertibles were sold.




The 1970 Hurst 300 occupies a gray area in the pantheon of the Letter Series, as it lacks the single-letter suffix of its forbears and appeared five years after the last Letter Series Chrysler, the 300L. As such, many automobile historians do not include the Hurst 300 as a Letter Series model. The concept of the car, however, does fit with the Letter Series cars, as it was a high-performance variant of the luxury 300, built with the input of aftermarket parts manufacturer Hurst. Only 501 units are believed to have been built.

The Hurst 300s were all 2-doors and shared a white and gold paint scheme not unlike the Oldsmobile and Pontiac Hurst models of the day. The scooped hood and trunklid (with a molded spoiler) are both fiberglass. All Hurst 300s had satin tan leather interiors that were straight out of the Imperial and could be had with column or console 727 automatics. Your sole engine was the 375 hp 440-4bbl TNT V8. Road tests clocked one at 0-60 at 7.1 seconds with the 1/4 mile in 15.9 seconds. "Not bad for a 4100 lb aircraft carrier", they claimed. In the 501 units sold, one is believed to be a convertible and another is believed to be dealer equipped with a 426 Hemi.





300 letter series cars today.

All original letter series cars are considered collectible as of 2005, but the early years are much more desirable. The C-300 and 300B, being less tractable as road cars, are slightly cheaper than the subsequent years.

The 300C through 300G are the most desirable; the coming of the regular 300 series cars in 1962 makes the subsequent letter series seem less special and less desirable to collectors.

There was one concept vehicle called the Chrysler 300, created in 1991. It featured a sports car body and a Viper engine. It was never produced.


The 300 letter series name was resurrected in 1999 with the Chrysler 300 M


But it is the 2005 300 that is closest to the original with its rear wheel drive, and V8 engine once again bearing the "HEMI" name. That Hemi was actually introduced on an LH platform concept convertible in 2001.

2005 Chrysler 300 C


It wasn't long after the debut of the HEMI-powered Chrysler C300 in 1955 that it became known as the "banker's hot rod." The key characteristics of that car-a powerful HEMI V-8 engine, performance-tuned ride and handling and premium amenities-are also key to the 2005 Chrysler 300C SRT8.





And, there's quite a bit more. Introduced in 2005, the Chrysler 300C SRT8 was the first Street and Racing Technology (SRT) vehicle to be powered with the 6.1-liter HEMI V-8, which offers 85 more horsepower — 25 percent more power — than the 5.7-liter HEMI.


But SRT performance is more than just straight-line quickness. The Chrysler 300C SRT8's 425-horsepower, normally aspirated 6.1-liter HEMI has the highest output for its size of any naturally aspirated V-8 engine ever offered by the Chrysler Group. Its 69.8 horsepower-per-liter rating exceeds even that of the legendary 1966 "Street HEMI." Torque is rated at 420 lb-ft.

"There's no other premium sedan that delivers the comfort, convenience and performance numbers that the Chrysler 300C SRT8 delivers," said Jeff Bell, Vice President-Chrysler Marketing, Chrysler Group. "In terms of affordability, no one else even comes close to delivering the Chrysler 300C SRT8's combination of performance and value."

"The Chrysler 300C SRT8 is a complete package for the customer who wants awesome performance in an award-winning sedan loaded with comfort and style," said Dan Knott, Director – Street and Racing Technology. "With its SRT-engineered 6.1-liter HEMI engine and Brembo brakes, it's engineered for incredible acceleration and stopping power."

For 2006, the Chrysler 300C SRT8 is available in a new Silver Steel exterior color. Also new for 2006 are a standard tire pressure monitoring system, an available Kicker high-performance audio system and available rear-seat video system.


FreebirdSRT: 2006 Chrysler 300 C SRT in Silver Steel.

Last edited by FreebirdSRT; 09-21-2007 at 10:37 AM.
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-21-2007, 11:34 AM
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Thanks Mark... great history lessons even if I only look at the pictures!

See my photo gallery section. First name is... uh... Tim. I know... it's Goofy! LOL


In love with my first wife & first car ('68 Charger) ... still have the wife
but now there's the Heritage Edition and a Magnum SRT8!
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-21-2007, 01:12 PM
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Thanks for the writeup. I love the whitewalls...so baller. I am tempted to find the 20's that guy was running at spring fling the last couple years, but they I go back to 22's...who knows.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-22-2007, 10:03 AM Thread Starter
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My pleasure and you are most welcome.
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-22-2007, 12:31 PM
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That was a great tour! That cleared a lot of confusion that I once had. Awesome! Hope you leave those photos in that post for a long time. I'm going to send it out to a bunch of friends.

Thanks!
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-22-2007, 12:45 PM
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Outstanding

Thanks Mark, grweat history.
I still can't figure out (with your 300 fascination) why you sold FreebirdSRT!

Last edited by crhemi; 09-22-2007 at 08:25 PM.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-22-2007, 01:05 PM
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Thanks for the great summary of the 300 bloodline, Mark.

Boy, did that Black 58 300 ragtop ever bring back memories! My uncle Stoney had one of those. I remember, as a 15 year old, that it had to be the fastest thing on the planet!

Patrick ... Latest List of Road Racing Mods ..........
2015 Hellcat is on its way to my stable!
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-22-2007, 04:48 PM
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thanks for the history lesson mark...always good to know bloodlines.


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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-22-2007, 05:27 PM
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Great job Mark!
And I didn't just look at the pictures, I read the whole thing!!!
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