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I only just discovered this forum recently, otherwise I would have posted these photos several weeks ago.

Last month, at the SEMA show in Las Vegas, I had a chance to get up close and personal with a pre-production model of the upcoming 425 hp Chrysler 300C SRT8. It was located in the Mopar Alley tent. One of the benefits to owning a racing shop. :)

At first glance, the car looked like a normal 300C with very tasteful aftermarket 20" wheels. The chrome trim was almost entirely replaced with body color trim. In silver, this didn't make a huge difference. A black SRT8, if it is offered, will look very different. The tail pipes were slightly larger and a small spoiler nicely frames the back of the car. A small badge is the biggest hint, from behind, that the car in front of you is something special.





I was impressed with the bolstering on the SRT8's seats. The seats look amazing and I'm hoping to add them to my "ordinary" 300C or else replace the whole darned car with an SRT8!



The engine bay was also impressive, with large intake runners dominating the compartment instead of being hidden underneath plastic covers.






The factory Brembos were unpainted, but a Chrysler engineer told me they would probably get a coat of silver paint before hitting the showroom floor. He also hinted that an SRT8 version of the Magnum RT might be produced and it would have red painted calipers. I learned that the front steering knuckles are unique to the SRT8, so any Brembo or StopTech aftermarket big brake kit designed for the normal 300C will not bolt on to this car. It will have to be measured and an SRT8-specific brake kit designed.

FRONT BRAKES:









REAR BRAKES:



A small brochure for the SRT8 was available and I grabbed a couple for the historical file. On one side, it shows a dramatic photo of the car and on the other, it lists some of the car's impressive specifications.




I was told to expect final pricing to be announced in a couple of weeks. And it was hinted that Chrysler is still on schedule for a February release of the SRT8. That seems to run counter to what some of you have heard in more recent weeks. I can't wait!! I want one now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
E55 KEV said:
Nice Pics!

You getting Silver or Black?
That depends. If the black is the same metal flake black they use on the "ordinary" 300C, then I'll get silver. But if it's a PURE black that doesn't look muddy, depending on how the light hits it, then I'll go for it.

I had a 1996 Impala SS in black that looked spectacular when it was detailed. When I decided to replace it with a 300C, I started out thinking I wanted black. But when I saw the Chrysler metal flake black in various lighting situations, it could look good or it could look very bad. Plus, the black color accentuated the excessive use of chrome on the car. With the silver color, the chrome doesn't jump out so much.

No offense to anyone who bought one in black. Color is a very personal choice.
 

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Thx 4 Pics

Very Nice Pics, I especially like those seats. Again Thanks! :)
 

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DZeckhausen said:
That depends. If the black is the same metal flake black they use on the "ordinary" 300C, then I'll get silver. But if it's a PURE black that doesn't look muddy, depending on how the light hits it, then I'll go for it.

I had a 1996 Impala SS in black that looked spectacular when it was detailed. When I decided to replace it with a 300C, I started out thinking I wanted black. But when I saw the Chrysler metal flake black in various lighting situations, it could look good or it could look very bad. Plus, the black color accentuated the excessive use of chrome on the car. With the silver color, the chrome doesn't jump out so much.

No offense to anyone who bought one in black. Color is a very personal choice.
Dave,

Isn't it a small world. It seems that several of us "Old" Impala SS folks are moving to the 300C scene. We met at Dave Zemels home in Bloomington, Il several years ago when you had a brake clinic going on in his garage. It’s a shame that GM (Chevrolet) has lost us since they no longer build what we want. I enjoyed your writings about the 96 several years ago and I will be looking forward to your going through this car and your updates on it as you go. Are you starting to plan on going to Detroit next summer when the Merc’s, Impalas and 300’s get together? If you are I’ll see you there. In the mean time, stay in touch.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
mspeasl said:
Isn't it a small world. It seems that several of us "Old" Impala SS folks are moving to the 300C scene. We met at Dave Zemels home in Bloomington, Il several years ago when you had a brake clinic going on in his garage. It’s a shame that GM (Chevrolet) has lost us since they no longer build what we want. I enjoyed your writings about the 96 several years ago and I will be looking forward to your going through this car and your updates on it as you go. Are you starting to plan on going to Detroit next summer when the Merc’s, Impalas and 300’s get together? If you are I’ll see you there. In the mean time, stay in touch.
Mike,

It's a very small world! A few years ago, I bought a BMW 540i 6-Speed and started doing Clutch Delay Valve (CDV) clinics around the country, much the same way I used to do my Impala SS brake clinics. Just like the Impala SS, the BMW had a hydraulic "flaw" that could be fixed by modifying a part and bleeding the system. The details of the fix for the BMW are here: http://www.zeckhausen.com/CDV.htm. During my travels around the country, I bumped into a few former Impala SS owners who had moved on to the BMW world. Since BMW 5-Series are less similar to the SS than the 300C, I was really surprised. I also found lots of former 1st and 2nd generation Taurus SHO owners who had moved up to the BMW 540 6-Speed and that made more sense.

As you can probably tell from my banner ads, I left the Bell Labs mother ship several years ago and started my own business to focus on something that had been a hobby for many years. So I don't travel as much as before, but I sure get to work on lots of cars and hang out with car guys.

Holms Lundt bought my Impala SS a few months ago, right after I picked up the 300C. He flew out to New Jersey and drove it back to Idaho where he promptly installed an LT4 from a Corvette Grand Sport and a 6-Speed manual transmission. The LT1 engine from my former ride went into his Toyota Land Cruiser! Like a hunter, he doesn't waste any parts.

What's this about a meet for the SS, Maurader (I presume) and 300C in Detroit? This is the first I've heard of it. I might be up for a road trip, although it's tough to shut the business down for more than a day or two.
 

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Hey Dave, since you are a brake man. Isn't that the oddest placement for a rear brake setup on the SRT-8?
 

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I’ve told me dealer that if they expect me to take delivery that the car has to be loaded and I want the same chrome treatment as the C.
 

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Is that engine painted Hemi Orange???? In the first engine picture I see hints of Orange around the intake manifold............. That's pretty bad if it is.... =D
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
E55 KEV said:
Hey Dave, since you are a brake man. Isn't that the oddest placement for a rear brake setup on the SRT-8?
It looks to be in almost the same position as the rear brakes on the "normal" 300C. Perhaps it is clocked about 15 degrees CCW from the 300C's brakes. That doesn't seem very odd to me.

Are you really asking why the front calipers are trailing (meaning aft of the wheel centerline) whereas the rear calipers are leading (meaning forward of the wheel centerline)? That is an unusual combination. Most cars either have both calipers leading or both calipers trailing.

The location of the calipers is usually dictated by the configuration of suspension components. Ideally, the calipers would be at either the 3:00 or the 9:00 positions, since this minimizes the occurance of pad knockback due to wheel bearing deflection under heavy sideloads. In English, this means you can go through a series of hard S-turns at the track and then not have your brake pedal sink down further than normal next time you step on it. Sometimes the suspension design forces the brakes to be clocked into a less than ideal position.

If you locate the caliper near the top position, say at 12:00, then you better design the car with hefty wheel bearings or the thing will have nasty knockback problems. For example, the Subaru WRX STi and the Nissan 350Z Track Model both have significant knockback issues when you put sticky tires on them and drive them on a race track.

Here's some good background information on knockback: http://www.stoptech.com/whitepapers/knockback.htm
 

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I think the block is supposed to be painted orange .... like older hemi's were .... something along those lines ...

This is all great to hear ... and great pics too ....

I'll take a silver one!
 

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DZeckhausen said:
It looks to be in almost the same position as the rear brakes on the "normal" 300C. Perhaps it is clocked about 15 degrees CCW from the 300C's brakes. That doesn't seem very odd to me.

Are you really asking why the front calipers are trailing (meaning aft of the wheel centerline) whereas the rear calipers are leading (meaning forward of the wheel centerline)? That is an unusual combination. Most cars either have both calipers leading or both calipers trailing.

The location of the calipers is usually dictated by the configuration of suspension components. Ideally, the calipers would be at either the 3:00 or the 9:00 positions
Hey Dave, put your glasses on and take another look see. He-He! :D That rear brake is no where centered near 3 or 9 O-Clock like most cars! That rear SRT-8 brake is center about 7 O-Clock.

Also about placement. Maybe it is a Mercedes thing! Mostly Mercedes cars have both brakes either inside or outside. Inside meaning the front and rear brakes (per side) are between the rocker panels (side skirts) or outside which is both facing the bumper overhangs per side.

 

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mspeasl said:
Dave,

Isn't it a small world. It seems that several of us "Old" Impala SS folks are moving to the 300C scene. We met at Dave Zemels home in Bloomington, Il several years ago when you had a brake clinic going on in his garage. It’s a shame that GM (Chevrolet) has lost us since they no longer build what we want. I enjoyed your writings about the 96 several years ago and I will be looking forward to your going through this car and your updates on it as you go. Are you starting to plan on going to Detroit next summer when the Merc’s, Impalas and 300’s get together? If you are I’ll see you there. In the mean time, stay in touch.

Mike
It is a small world! I went to a few of those meetings at daves house with some guy that wrote a book on building computers.
 

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toothdoc said:
It is a small world! I went to a few of those meetings at daves house with some guy that wrote a book on building computers.
Yes indeed it is geting to be an even smaller world. That would be Scott Muller from "The HERD" (Chicago Land Impala group). Toothdoc, Where are you located now? Are you still in the Bloomington area?
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
E55 KEV said:
Hey Dave, put your glasses on and take another look see. He-He! :D That rear brake is no where centered near 3 or 9 O-Clock like most cars! That rear SRT-8 brake is center about 7 O-Clock.
I realize you're teasing me. But to clarify. I said the SRT8 rear caliper is approximatly in the same location (perhaps 15 degrees CCW) of the 300C rear caliper. I didn't say that EITHER caliper was in the ideal 3:00 or 9:00 position.

I'm putting the rear StopTech brake kit on my 300C right after I eat lunch. I'll take some photos to see if it's obvious why they oriented the calipers the way they did.
 

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DZeckhausen said:
I'm putting the rear StopTech brake kit on my 300C right after I eat lunch. I'll take some photos to see if it's obvious why they oriented the calipers the way they did.
We like pictures *hint hint* ;)
 

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DZeckhausen said:
I realize you're teasing me. But to clarify. I said the SRT8 rear caliper is approximatly in the same location (perhaps 15 degrees CCW) of the 300C rear caliper. I didn't say that EITHER caliper was in the ideal 3:00 or 9:00 position.
Conventional yes, optimal - not necessarily. Factor in heat disipation/cooling, center of gravity, dircection of rotor spinning, ducting accessibility to brakes, etc. Why is 3 or 9 "optimal"?

Purpose built F1 racing cars have seen them placed at the conventional 3 or 9 but also at the 6 (ferrari), 7 (mclaren), and 10 (jag).

Maybe the R&D department inside of dalmier/chrysler picked up some tricks from the McLaren/Mercedes partnership that they've applied to the SRT.

Or, maybe it's just plain wierd for another reason you'll discover when you pull it apart. ;-)

Other than convention - what is the main purpose that 3 or 9 is optimal?
 
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