From the June 2005 affair of Car and Driver.
Chrysler’s 300C SRT8 is the car we anticipation the American auto industry would not anatomy again. Afterwards the muscle-car era, United States automakers alone the high-performance family-sedan blueprint to the Germans (who added clarification but answerable elitist prices) and Japanese (who answerable a little beneath than the Germans but somehow antibacterial the accomplished thing).
On occasion, the home industry was acceptable for the affordable yet unrefined account that briefly anointed our pain—to name a few, the Buick Admirable National and GNX, the Chevrolet Impala SS, and the Ford Taurus SHO. Those cartage offered achievement and amount but lacked the clarification of the acceptation brands. For 2004, Cadillac gave us the 400-hp CTS-V that affiliated the achievement and clarification of the über-sedans, but at $51,485, General Motors accuse absolutely for it.
What makes the SRT8 adaptation of Chrysler’s 300C aberrant is that it’s the aboriginal auto from anyone, anywhere, to amalgamate the clarification and achievement of the cher supersedans with a sticker of $42,095, no incentives necessary. It’s article the U.S. auto industry should accept done continued ago, but it was account the wait.
Without the 10Best-winning 340-hp 300C, which apparently wouldn’t accept gestated in its accepted anatomy had it not been for the Mercedes merger, SRT (Street and Racing Technology) administrator Dan Knott would not accept had such a superb starting point on which to accomplish the modifications all-important to accomplish the car into article aces of SRT badging. For those whose chargeless time is absolutely taken up by reruns of VH1’s Strange Love, the SRT analysis of Chrysler and Dodge is affiliated to Mercedes-Benz’s AMG and BMW’s M analysis in that they booty approved assembly cars and up the ante until they accept about 50 added application than you’d expect.
Highs: Achievement shames that of best sports cars, $42,095 abject price, machine-gun bankrupt note, Porsche-grade endlessly distances, allowance for five.
In the case of the 300C SRT8, the added agent makes 425 application and 420 pound-feet of torque from a bored-out, high-compression-ratio 6.1-liter adaptation of the accumulated 5.7-liter Hemi V-8. Tricks such as capricious valve timing or a multistage assimilation assorted are not present. New being includes aloof a distinct hot camshaft sitting in the block, 16 lightened valves, and a artificial crankshaft that allows the ample V-8 to circuit to a adapted 6400 rpm. The torque aiguille arrives at 4800 rpm. That may complete aerial for an agent this big, but the copious displacement agency abundant torque is accessible off abandoned to put the limited-slip cogwheel to acceptable use. Compared with the 5.7-liter it’s based on, the 6.1-liter feels sportier and, oddly, abate because of its affection for aerial revs.
An acquisitive five-speed automated adapted by SRT provides actual upshifts and downshifts and is a agitating accomplice to the 6.1-liter. Full-throttle accouterment at the redline are accompanied by an atomic sonic bang from the exhaust. Back off the throttle, and the complete becomes aged and unobtrusive. At 70 mph we abstinent 69 decibels of noise, but you don’t apprehend the agent as abundant as you apprehend the wind hasty about the brick-like anatomy and the hum of the advanced tires. Following the argumentation of AMG’s offerings, the German automaker’s American operations do not action a clamp pedal. Manual transmissions in sedans this ample and with this abundant ability somehow feel out of abode and too generally ache from aerial efforts that accomplish them difficult to drive smoothly.
The SRT8 is a big auto with 56 cubic anxiety of advanced commuter amplitude and 51 in the rear. It isn’t ablaze at 4212 pounds, but at aloof beneath 10 pounds per application the SRT8 will apprehension through 60 mph in 4.7 abnormal on its way to a 13.2-second quarter-mile at 109 mph. If the SRT8 had been included in the “Executive Adrenalators” allegory [ C/D, November 2004], it would accept been beneath big-ticket and offered added sheetmetal and its dispatch would accept been at the top of the heap. The SRT8’s adventurous top dispatch of 173 mph additionally would accept placed it on top and is abnormally amazing back you accede the block-like annoyance accessory of 0.36 and the garage-door-sized aboveboard breadth of 25.8 aboveboard feet. Bigger yet, the SRT8 outpaces the adventurous CTS-V by 12 mph and all AMG articles (which are absolute at 155 mph) by 18 mph. Academic for sure, but if you paid added for those added cars, you’d absolutely appetite the aloof rights.
Lows: Acres of gray artificial inside, inclement bad-road ride, absorptive brake-pedal feel.
The weight of the SRT8 is additionally finer hidden by abeyance changes that lower and anneal the chassis. Striking 20-inch auto that attending about big abundant to bifold as turbofan blades on a Boeing 777-200LR are captivated by uncompromised Goodyear Eagle F1 Supercar summer tires that attach to the skidpad to the tune of 0.89 g. For those who don’t appetite to buy new auto and snow tires (you’d accept to buy new auto if you capital snows, back a 20-inch snow annoy doesn’t abide at the moment), Chrysler will accouter the SRT8 with all-season Goodyear RS-As that ability accept a bigger adventitious of accepting you out of a albino driveway. The annoy sizes are staggered—smaller 245/45R-20 fronts and hardly beyond 255/45R-20 rears—and on a dry, bound administration advance there is some antecedent understeer, but it’s calmly canceled by a quick able of the throttle. Council feel isn’t absolutely as award-worthy as the blow of the chassis. The power-assisted rack-and-pinion bureaucracy is anticipated and never surprises, but it lacks the acknowledgment you appetite in a car so accommodating to baffle centripetal forces.
Standard on the SRT8 is a distinctively acquainted stability-control arrangement that allows for added bottomward and sliding than the approved 300C’s added advancing system. As with Mercedes products, blame the adherence button on the birr doesn’t absolutely attenuate the ascendancy system, but you’ll be acceptable alike added abandon afore the arrangement assuredly intervenes. With the button pushed, blind the appendage out for those Dukes of Hazzard moments is as accessible as cranking the council caster and carpeting the accelerator— Yee-haw!
The Duke boys ability acknowledge the annealed ride of the SRT8, but if you’re attractive for a adaptable ride, the regular-strength 300C may be added your speed. In the SRT adaptation you and your cartage will acquaintance added bucking than Travolta did in Urban Cowboy. The dubs, the humble tires, and the firmer abeyance access the anchor but abase the ride over beneath than burnished pavement. Fortunately, alike the harshest impacts don’t arm-twist agitation from the adamant unibody. The able anatomy imparts the SRT8 with a activity of clarification and calmness that rivals that of sedans from das Vaterland.
The brakes are additionally up there with the finest from the autobahn nation. Stops from 70 mph booty alone 162 anxiety of absolute estate, and these brakes do so over and over afresh with no assurance of fade. The advanced rotors admeasurement 14.2 inches, and the rears are 13.8 inches across, with four-piston calipers accomplishing the anchor at every corner. Despite the SRT8’s arresting braking achievement at the track, afterwards the car alternate from testing, the brake-pedal feel became a bit spongy, acute added biking than we like afore bitter down.
What doesn’t absolutely admeasurement up to added big-ticket sedans is the autogenous of the SRT8. On the additional ancillary there are new pseudo-suede and covering advanced seats that attending like Viper seats let out amid the bolsters. The chairs are supportive, and the added admeasurement will fit big-and-tall shoppers with ease. An easy-to-use alternative aeronautics arrangement kept us from accepting absent whenever we became adrift by the SRT8’s acceleration. The nav arrangement is allotment of a $1965 amalgamation that includes an upgraded and crisp-sounding stereo with Sirius accessory radio. Metallic trim adorns the centermost animate and doors, but it doesn’t change the plastic-filled berth to the admeasurement that the blow of the modifications adapt the appearance of the car. Some ability alarm the autogenous understated, and it is absolutely not an abhorrent abode to absorb time—it’s aloof a bit addled in ablaze of the arch performance.
The Verdict: AMG-like performance, Mercedes-like refinement—at a Chrysler price.
DaimlerChrysler charge absolutely admit the abundance and address of the 300C SRT8 as it will anon be abutting by SRT8 versions of the Jeep Admirable Cherokee and Dodge Charger and Magnum. Appropriate now, the alone added car affairs in the low 40s that approaches the joy we get from the Chrysler is the lightweight, uncompromised Lotus Elise. Obviously, the two cars couldn’t be added different. So why do we appetite both of them in our barn so badly? Because in both cases a Ferrari-like adherence to disciplinarian beatitude is the acumen they exist, and no one does it as able-bodied for the money.
You can alarm the 300C SRT8 a poor man’s Mercedes E55 AMG or a four-door Dodge Viper, but I aloof alarm it impressive. With a abject amount of about 42 large, the SRT8 runs appropriate with a Cadillac CTS- V (about 10 admirable more) and not too far abaft a Corvette. Chrysler has congenital a accurate four-door American beef car here—for pity’s sake, it’s a 4212-pound brick that can hit 173 mph! Perhaps added absorbing is that from 70 to 0, it halts those two-plus bags in a fade-free 162 feet. This affair can stop and go bigger than LeBron. And it’s got mad artery cred, acknowledgment to jet-fan dubs, Bentley-esque styling, and a bargain stance. As Chick Hearn acclimated to say, “Slam dunk!” —Ron Kiino
The association at Chrysler’s SRT had bigger be careful. I agnosticism their German administration paid abundant absorption back the econobox Neon was turbocharged to aural an inch of its activity or back a Dodge Ram auto barter was able with 500 horses. But now SRT has addled on article a bit dearer to those bosses’ hearts—the Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG. At 4.7 seconds, the 300C SRT8 is aloof 0.4 additional slower to 60 mph. However, the SRT8 outstops the E55 by 11 anxiety from 70 mph and outgrips it on the skidpad. The SRT8 is additionally added involving to drive and beneath like a apparatus for speed. One aftermost detail: It costs $40,000 beneath than the Benz. Uh-oh. —Dave VanderWerp
What a brute. The council is annihilation if not manly. The ride affection is aloof this ancillary of Fred Flintstone. The autogenous décor is audibly ascetic for a $42,095 car. I complain about these demerits as I boom about Michigan’s aged byways. Then I baggage on the gas, and— vroom!—a half-mile disappears afore a faculty of authorization canning sets in. I again this action consistently during my campaign with the SRT8 and emerged with the aforementioned cessation every time: Application is good. Added application is better. Not to acknowledgment habit-forming. As a adolescent of the muscle-car era, I accept I subscribe to the above added than most. But I additionally accept no one is immune. —Tony Swan
2006 Chrysler 300C SRT8
VEHICLE TYPEfront-engine, rear-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door sedan
PRICE AS TESTED$45,450
ENGINE TYPEpushrod 16-valve V-8, adamant block and aluminum heads, port/direct/port and absolute ammunition injectionDisplacement 370 in3, 6059 cm3Power 425 hp @ 6200 rpmTorque 420 lb-ft @ 4800 rpm
CHASSISSuspension (F/R): multilink/multilinkBrakes (F/R): 14.2-in vented disc/13.8-in vented discTires: Goodyer Eagle F1 Supercar, F: 245/45ZR-20 99Y R:255/45ZR-20 101Y
DIMENSIONSWheelbase: 120.0 inLength: 196.8 inWidth: 74.1 inHeight: 57.9 inPassenger volume: 107 ft3Trunk volume: 16 ft3Curb weight: 4212 lb
C/D TEST RESULTS60 mph: 4.7 sec100 mph: 11.2 sec130 mph: 20.0 secRolling start, 5–60 mph: 4.9 secTop gear, 30–50 mph: 2.7 secTop gear, 50–70 mph: 3.0 sec1/4 mile: 13.2 sec @ 109 mphTop dispatch (redline limited): 173 mphBraking, 70–0 mph: 162 ftRoadholding, 300-ft-dia skidpad: 0.89 g
C/D FUEL ECONOMYObserved: 14 mpg
EPA FUEL ECONOMYCombined/city/highway: 15/13/18 mpg
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2022 Chrysler 300 Srt8 – 2022 Chrysler 300 Srt8
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