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I thought 300C fans might like to read what the Australian press has to say about the car.

:)

Wow Power
Chris Riley - News Interactive Australia
14may04


The 300C stops people in their tracks.
Chrysler 300C
Engine: 5.7-litre V8 250kW and 525Nm
Features: Aggressive styling, V8 power, rear wheel drive, advance cylinder shutdown, all the mod cons
Price: TBA



You've seen them in the movies and have probably spotted the odd one from time to time on the road.

We're talking about big, cruisy American cars with thumping great V8s and truckloads of power – Yank tanks as they used to be known.
Australia recently delivered the Monaro to the US and the Americans are getting ready to return the favour, with a big V8-powered Chrysler that will go head to head with Ford and Holden.

It has been more than 20 years since Chrysler has gone one on one with the big two in Australia, not since the last Valiant rolled off the production line – but the Chrysler 300C is not like any American car that we have seen before.

As with other vehicles to come out of the Chrysler stable in the last couple of years, the 300C boasts dramatic styling with simple technology to dramatically improve fuel consumption from the big 5.7-litre Hemi V8.

In short. the rear-wheel drive 300C is a car that is going to knock your socks off with its big, bold, muscular front grille, high waisted "hot rod" sides, narrow band of windows and chunky 18inch wheels.

If it all sounds good so far, the only downside is that we are going to have to wait 12 months or so before the car finds its way down under.

The 300C draws its name and heritage from the 300 series "letter cars" that Chrysler began producing in the 50s.

With 300 brake horsepower the big, low-slung coupes were able to reach an unprecedented 150mph and were the fastest thing to hit stock car racing at the time.

The new car while it is a four-door sedan draws many styling cues from the original cars that ceased production in 1965.

We were fortunate to be among a select few journalists to preview and drive the car recently in France.

The big Hemi V8 (another name from the past) puts out 250kW of power and 525Nm of torque and is capable of catalpulting the car from 0 to 100km/h in just 6.4 seconds, despite the fact it measures just 1mm shy of 5 metres and weighs close to 2 tonnes.

The clever thing is that the engine uses what Chrysler describes as a Multi-Displacement System to shutdown four of the eight cylinders when maximum power is not required, dramatically reducing fuel consumption.

Final certification has not been given yet but Chrysler executives believe the car should achieve a figure of just under 12.0L/100km which means you can have your V8 cake and eat it too.

The transition from eight to four cylinders is virtually seamless, taking just 40 milli-seconds.

It transforms the engine from a V8 to a V4 configuration by shutting down two cylinders on each side.

The big V8 is teamed with a five-speed sequential auto that neither Australian manufacturer currently offers.

Chrysler says it is too early to discuss pricing, but adds it will be "attractively" priced to compete with Fairlane and Statesman.

A 3.5-litre 186kW V6 model will also be offered while an all-wheel drive Touring wagon is still under consideration.

The 300C is an imposing car especially from the front with a strong street presence that turns heads wherever it goes.

Based on style alone it could give Ford and Holden a real shakeup, provided of course the price is right.




It is also likely to draw buyers from larger European saloons that are looking for something different.

On the road the 300C feels large but agile, with a burst of power that quickly dispatches slower vehicles.

Handling is not quite sporty but certainly no soggy biscuit.

The twin exhaust system delivers a recognisable V8 note under hard acceleration.

At other times it is almost inaudible, with impressively low levels of interior noise.

Top speed of the car is limited to 250km/h.

The interior is finished in "real" California walnut, with the usual luxury appointments including satellite navigation and a 380 watt Boston Acoustics sound system.

The driver's seat has eight way adjustment, with a steering wheel that has height and reach adjustment as well as foot pedals that adjust.


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