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How much? £39,995
On sale in the UK: Now
Engine: 2987cc 24v turbodiesel V6, 236bhp @ 4000rpm, 399lb ft @ 1600-2800rpm
Transmission: Five-speed auto, rear-wheel drive
Performance: 7.4sec 0-62mph, 144mph, 39.2mpg, 191g/km
How heavy / made of? 2117kg/steel
How big (length/width/height in mm)? 5066/1902/1488
Need to know

CAR's rating

Rated 3 out of 53

Handling

Rated 3 out of 53

Performance

Rated 3 out of 53

Usability

Rated 3 out of 53

Feelgood factor

Rated 4 out of 54

Readers' rating

Rated 2.5 out of 52.5

Chrysler 300C 3.0 CRD (2013) CAR review

By Phil McNamara

First Drives

23 January 2013 11:54

CAR has driven the new Chrysler 300C in CRD V6 diesel form to see if it's a credible rival to German exec expresses like the Audi A6 and BMW 5-series. And can it possibly run as a possible half-price alternative to a Mercedes S-class? Read on for the full verdict.

Not much change on the styling front for the 2013 Chrysler 300C?

Chrysler is sticking with the tried (and trampled) US invasion plan for the UK car market: lots of car for lots less cash. The 300C is wider and taller than a Mercedes S-class, and almost as long. Its only engine is a 3.0-litre V6 turbodiesel, and the two-trim range starts at £35,995. In isolation, that looks precipitously pricey, but it’s actually not far off half the price of a base S350 Benz.

The company is also sticking with the tried (and triumphant) proportions of the first-gen 300C. It looked fresh and brilliant because of the ratio of slitty sideglass to bulging bodywork, like a letterbox cut into a rhino. The poor man’s Bentley lamps and grille are now thankfully gone, replaced by beadier eyes and a mouth that’s the lovechild of Batman’s latest nemesis, Bane, and Hannibal Lecter. German limos can only dream of being this menacing and extrovert.

First impressions of the Chrysler 300C's interior

My word, it’s big. Slide into the driver’s comfy armchair, and to reach the open, enormous door, you have to dangle forward using your seatbelt as a trapeze artist’s safety wire. The 300C needs a Rolls-Royce-style motor to close the door for you. Now Chrysler is owned by Fiat, some of that Italian DNA is coming through in the pedal positions, which don’t appear to be in the same postcode as the footwell. Another bugbear is the massive foot-operated parking brake, which is perfectly positioned to clonk your shin and obstruct the footrest: genius.

But is the Chrysler 300C better built than American cars of old?

Every other sentence in the press pack boasts of a quantum leap forward in quality. The cabin certainly feels robust and well-built, but the perceived quality still looks budget, not Benz. Although Chrysler swears not, the wood appears synthetic: it has the look of elephant hide that’s been rotated on a doner kebab grill for months. And the plastic armrest supports and doorbins are nasty.

There’s plenty to like though: the Uconnect touchscreen is more intuitive and faster than Jaguar’s, and it has a rare Apple Genius-type function that selects types of songs to play. The flagship Executive trim heaps gadgets upon the base car’s generous spec, adding adaptive cruise control, blind-spot warning system, a double sunroof, emergency braking and a leather-wrapped dash. And as you’d expect, the 300C lavishes space on occupants: there’s decent room to stretch legs in the back, though headroom is tight if you’re beyond 6ft.

What's the Chrysler 300C V6 CRD like on the move?

On the go, the standout feature is the 300C’s blissful refinement. Triple door seals, wheelarch linings, acoustic glass and underbody panels combine to smother wind and tyre noise. The ride isn’t Yank-tank cushy: it’s quite brittle, and sharp bumps can send shivers through the chassis. If you can live with that, the 300C makes a sweet motorway cruiser. It’s too big, lumbering and heavy (some 160kg beefier than a S350) to feel comfortable in corners, with the nose a bit wallowy and reluctant to turn in. And the electro-hydraulic steering has a mind of its own, dragging its feet about leaving the dead-ahead, and hell-bent on self-centering. The Executive model’s 20-inch tyres can make the steering tug over cats’ eyes too.

Is the 3.0-litre V6 turbodiesel engine any good?

The V6 turbodiesel has Fiat’s latest MultiJet injection system to optimise power and economy. Combined fuel consumption of 39.2mpg and 191g/km of CO2 are easily eclipsed by the Germans and Jaguar. Peak torque of 399lb ft comes on stream at 1600rpm, for brisk rather than ballistic acceleration. Standstill to 62mph takes 7.4sec; such bursts are tempered by the V6’s bovine soundtrack and the five-speed automatic’s languid shifts. The brakes are great, biting hard and progressively.

Verdict:

It’s hard to make a rational case for buying a 300C; indeed, Chrysler only expects to sell about 750 cars a year. But it’s a car that’s truly greater than the sum of its parts. That sticker price is pretty tempting, and the 300C oozes American charm.

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Average rating: Rated 2.5 out of 52.5 (15 votes)

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Chrysler 300C 3.0 CRD (2013) CAR review

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bertandnairobi

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bertandnairobi says

RE: Chrysler 300C 3.0 CRD (2013) CAR review

It´s the usual British summing up of American cars though I suspect that even so, this is not one of the best of them. Buick and Cadillac are offering more convincing interpretations of the theme in my view. And the Ford Taurus is offering a mid-point: American scale and a kind of European style.

12 November 2013 21:20

 

LoopysLament

LoopysLament says

RE: Chrysler 300C 3.0 CRD (2013) CAR review

The report does not help. Journalistic clever phrases do not tell us what is meant by Bovine etc

Some help on the driving - but remember we are not all boy racers now or need super sharp handling

A comment about true MPG appears to sow that the writer did not cover sufficient miles to tell us or to write a proper test

I wish journalists would forget about wacky phrases discribing something and stop trying to act like a jouvenile TV car program presenter - it would help

So is it an OK car or not - this article does not answer fundimental questions

 

 

 

 

12 November 2013 21:09

 

gtrslngr

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gtrslngr says

RE: Chrysler 300C 3.0 CRD (2013) CAR review

@ Fadyady

 

Just a small reminder here . The Chrysler 300C is in fact nothing more than a now ten year old defunct Mercedes Benz E-Class underneath all that vulgar Chrysler body work .

 

So ..... errr...... care to reconsider ?  

05 February 2013 15:13

 

gtrslngr

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gtrslngr says

RE: Chrysler 300C 3.0 CRD (2013) CAR review

  A little wisdom for y'all from your site mate  across the Pond ;

 

When it comes to ANY Chrysler product ( or badge engineered Chrysler masquerading as a Lancia/Alfa etc ) 

 

JUST SAY NO !!!!!!!!!

 

@ antonyr - StE's not being ' hurtful '  .... just blunt and to the point on this one I'm afraid ( sorry Fadyady 

05 February 2013 15:10

 

antonyr

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antonyr says

RE: Chrysler 300C 3.0 CRD (2013) CAR review

 @Sam the Eagle   you can be so hurtfull somtimes OOOWWWWWWWWW  Bitter MOI !!

05 February 2013 10:33

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