From the July/August 2023 subject of Automobile and Driver.
Farewell excursions are gold mines. Almost each a part of the Chrysler 300C is a decade previous or extra, however earlier than the 300 goes away for good, mother or father firm Stellantis is placing all of it again on the market for one final blowout.
The 1998 Chronos present automotive gave us a really early preview, however a extra production-ready idea, badged 300C, appeared in 2003. When the primary technology went on sale in early 2004, Ralph Gilles’s styling efforts gave this lengthy, low sedan a lot presence that many people likened it to a child Bentley. It rode atop Chrysler’s LX platform, which cribbed rather a lot from then-partner Mercedes-Benz. The 300’s decrease trims got here with a 2.7- or 3.5-liter V-6, the 300C picked up a 340-hp 5.7-liter V-8, and the range-topping SRT-8 that arrived the next 12 months packed a 425-hp 6.1-liter Hemi. The 300’s styling, inside consolation, and driving dynamics earned it 10Best honors in 2005 and 2006.
The second technology of the 300 debuted in 2011, with smoothed-over, if much less distinctive, aesthetics. The three.6-liter V-6 grew to become the bottom six-cylinder, with greater trims providing both a 5.7-liter or, come 2012, a 6.4-liter V-8. A light facelift arrived for the 2015 mannequin 12 months, with new security tech, higher infotainment, and an eight-speed automated, whereas the SRT was dropped.
After which it sat—till now.
The 6.4-liter returns to the 300C in a restricted run of simply 2000 models in the USA and 200 in Canada. The mannequin’s V-8 is shared with different Mopar efficiency nameplates and produces 485 horsepower and 475 pound-feet of torque, all of which is shipped rearward through an eight-speed automated.
The C stands other than the pack with a selected tricolor badge, 20-inch wheels wrapped in all-season tires, black exhaust suggestions, and numerous dark-chrome accents throughout the physique. Pink four-piston Brembo calipers squeeze 14.2-inch entrance and 13.8-inch rear rotors, whereas a limited-slip rear differential with a 3.09:1 final-drive ratio helps handle (or overwhelm) traction out again. Inside are black Laguna leather-based seats with embossed logos up entrance, silver stitching, an odd smattering of carbon fiber, and a 19-speaker Harman/Kardon audio system.
The 2 most character-defining elements of the 300C are the three.09:1 rear finish and the all-season tires. Managing all that twist is unquestionably an excessive amount of to ask of the 245/45ZR-20 Goodyear Eagle RS-A2s. Even on dry pavement, mild throttle utility delivers a wallop of torque and wheelspin that the traction management lets fly for a bit earlier than shutting it down. The identical goes for the soundness management, which is as overworked as a Dickensian school-age coal miner and can fortunately let the tail out for a number of seconds at a time.
The 300C is not breaking information, nevertheless it nonetheless supplies loads of leisure, reaching 60 mph in 4.4 seconds and crossing the quarter-mile in 12.8 seconds at 114 mph. The all-seasons did not assistance on the skidpad, the place we recorded an simply achieved 0.87 g with hints of understeer; some household sedans can push into the 0.90-g vary today.
Chrysler unlocked a few distinctive achievements with the 300C. At wide-open throttle, we recorded 88 decibels, an absolute roar that tops even the Lamborghini Urus Performante. And this lengthy, offended barge can also be the one automotive in latest reminiscence that may use each little bit of its 160-mph speedometer.
There is no such thing as a higher option to exit than in a tire-roasting blaze of glory, and the 2023 Chrysler 300C does precisely that. This automotive is a rubber-melting, hard-charging, and sharp-barking piece of tried-and-true Detroit angle. As Stellantis embraces its electrical future, the 300C will stay on our minds for a protracted, very long time.
What the Hellcat?
We have all the time puzzled why Chrysler by no means went full bat-guano and threw Dodge’s Hellcat supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 underneath the 300’s hood. “The Hellcat merely does not match Chrysler model positioning,” a rep for Chrysler informed us. “Chrysler is just not the intense efficiency model. A refined mixture of energy and luxurious is the guts of the 300’s soul.” Fortunately, that hasn’t stopped house owners from making it occur. Because the LX platform helps the Challenger, the Charger, and the 300, the powertrain parts are a simple swap.
2023 Chrysler 300C
Automobile Sort: front-engine, rear-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door sedan
Base/As Examined: $56,595/$56,595
pushrod 16-valve V-8, iron block and aluminum head, port gas injection
Displacement: 392 in3, 6417 cm3
Energy: 485 hp @ 6100 rpm
Torque: 475 lb-ft @ 4100 rpm
Suspension, F/R: management arms/multilink
Brakes, F/R: 14.2-in vented disc/13.8-in vented disc
Tires: Goodyear Eagle RS-A2
245/45ZR-20 99Y M+S
Wheelbase: 120.0 in
Size: 198.6 in
Width: 74.9 in
Peak: 58.7 in
Passenger Quantity, F/R: 56/51 ft3
Trunk Quantity: 16 ft3
Curb Weight: 4467 lb
C/D TEST RESULTS
60 mph: 4.4 sec
100 mph: 9.8 sec
1/4-Mile: 12.8 sec @ 114 mph
130 mph: 17.1 sec
150 mph: 25.7 sec
Outcomes above omit 1-ft rollout of 0.3 sec.
Rolling Begin, 5–60 mph: 4.9 sec
Prime Gear, 30–50 mph: 2.3 sec
Prime Gear, 50–70 mph: 2.8 sec
Prime Velocity (mfr’s declare): 160 mph
Braking, 70–0 mph: 172 ft
Braking, 100–0 mph: 342 ft
Roadholding, 300-ft Skidpad: 0.87 g
C/D FUEL ECONOMY
Noticed: 18 mpg
75-mph Freeway Driving: 22 mpg
75-mph Freeway Vary: 400 mi
EPA FUEL ECONOMY
Mixed/Metropolis/Freeway: 18/15/24 mpg
Vehicles are Andrew Krok’s jam, together with boysenberry. After graduating with a level in English from the College of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2009, Andrew lower his tooth writing freelance journal options, and now he has a decade of full-time evaluation expertise underneath his belt. A Chicagoan by start, he has been a Detroit resident since 2015. Possibly in the future he’ll do one thing about that half-finished engineering diploma.