With the oil crisis of the ‘70s many predicted the death of the V8 engine, but it has continued to solider on. With Chrysler and Infiniti execs recently commenting that there’s no place for eight-cylinder cars in the future of their respective brands, this time, are the V8 engine’s days finally numbered?
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Back in March, Chrysler teamed up with fashion designer John Varvatos to create a one-of-a-kind 300S that was auctioned off to benefit the Stuart House. Clearly the American automaker was pleased with the results, as the fashion designer has created two more 300C models that will be made available to the public.
The latest and final installment in the Batman trilogy entitled ‘Dark Knight Rises’ is set to come out next month, and Chrysler is preparing for the launch with it’s newest slogan, ‘Imported from Gotham.’
10. Chevrolet Camaro ZL1: $54,095
Today’s cars all seem to be focused on delivering fun driving experience that’s still friendly on gas. Those two elements are often an important factor in a car purchase, but sometimes you just want to feral thrill of a big, loud engine.
The Chrysler 300 is getting a face-lift that will take direct aim at the luxury brands. This newest edition of the Luxury series 300 will offer some pretty swanky features that you would expect from a Benz or a BMW.
The Luxury series will come dressed with Italian Poltrona Frau leather which will cover the instrument panel, front and rear door panels as well as the center console side panels. Premium Nappa leather will cover the arm rests and front and rear seats and come with a choice of two color options; black or two tone Mocachino. The seats themselves have 12-way power position adjustments as well as heating and cooling features to ensure that everyone can find a comfy seating arrangement. A very nice touch added to the interior as well is real natural Pore Mocha wood accents.
The luxury package will be outfitted with the all new ZF eight speed automatic transmission paired to either the Pentastar V6 engine or for the real power the 5.7L HEMI V8. While the transmission will no doubt help the car with fuel economy and smooth power delivery, this make over is all about the aesthetics of the car both inside and out.
The exterior will be packed with chrome accents on the door handles, around the grille, and on the mirror caps to give the 300 the luxury look and depending on whether the car is AWD or RWD it will come with 19 or 20 inch painted pocket aluminium wheels.
This new luxurious 300 will be arriving at dealerships in the first quarter of 2012. The pricing for the 300C will be as follows: Chrysler 300 Luxury Series (RWD) $40,145; Chrysler 300 Luxury Series (AWD) $42,495; Chrysler 300C Luxury Series (RWD) $42,895; Chrysler 300C Luxury Series(AWD) $45,245.
GALLERY: Chrysler 300 Luxury Edition
Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne is making Alfa Romeo’s U.S. re-launch a top priority, calling it “the most difficult thing I have to do”. Alfa Romeo last sold cars in the U.S. in 1995, but the brand still has a strong image in the U.S., spurring Marchionne to focus efforts on North America.
Alfa Romeo’s image has taken a beating in Europe over its legendary quality issues, and this factor provided further impetus for Fiat to focus their efforts in the U.S., where Alfa’s are viewed with nostalgic fondness. Marchionne hopes that Alfa will sell 80,000 cars in the U.S. in 2014, with 400,000 units sold globally – up from 150,000 currently.
Alfa will offer the 4C sports car and a compact SUV will be offered initially with the Giulia sedan and wagon, the Mito hatchback, a new Spider and a Chrysler 300C-derived 6C sedan coming as well. The 4C is said to be a key halo designed to capitalize on memories of Dustin Hoffman’s Alfa Spider in the iconic film The Graduate.
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The first generation Chrysler 300 was famously described by comedian Katt Williams as ”…a [Rolls Royce] Phantom…until a Phantom pull up next to you…”, and that ignominious distinction was no doubt fueled by the frequent addition of an aftermarket Bentley-esque egg-crate grille by some owners.
Chrysler’s Mopar division is looking to capitalize on this trend by offering a range of eight grilles, ranging from $310 to $750. The higher end models are two-piece units constructed from billet aluminum, a far cry from the cheap plastic units common on most Bentley-fied Chryslers.
Mopar will also offer six wheel options, ranging from 18 to 20 inches in diameter, with a price range from $265 to $610 per wheel. While most of the choices will be finished in such “urban” styles as chrome, gloss black and “satin carbon”, two “Rallye” style wheel options will be offered, which we can assume mimic the classic 5-spoke mag wheels offered on some Dodge Challengers.
The all new Chrysler 300 will start at just under $28,000, rising to $41,145 for a full-blown AWD equipped 300C with a 5.7L Hemi V8. The base car, equipped with a 3.6L V6 making 292 horsepower, will start at $27,995 when it goes on sale in early 2011.
The Limited model will start at $31,995 and adds heated leather seats, a backup camera, Chrysler’s UConnect telematics with Bluetooth integration, and 18″ wheels. The Limited Luxury Group model will cost $35,245 and gets upgraded Napa leather, Ash Burl wood trim, illuminated surfaces throughout the cabin, heated rear seats, 12 way adjustable power driver and passenger seats and a power sunshade.
Finally, the V8 powered 300C will start at $38,995 and feature all of the equipment on the Limited Luxury, plus Chrysler’s brawny 363 horsepower V8.
A SafetyTec package will be available on all models that features HID headlamps, a frontal collision warning system, blindspot cameras, adaptive cruise control and audible parking sensors.
Hit the jump for the official press release
The outgoing Chrysler 300 was a great value thanks to a number of cost cutting initiatives, like sharing a platform with Mercedes-Benz’s old E-Class and using interior materials made out of melted down children’s toys. That might have been passable five years ago, but with even small cars boasting high quality interiors, the awful tortoise shell trim and cheesy analog clock isn’t going to cut it anymore.
With most of Chrysler’s new offerings getting substantially upgraded interiors, the 300 range wasn’t going to miss out, and the first officially released photo looks pretty good, echoing products like the new Jeep Grand Cherokee and the upcoming Dodge Charger and Dodge Durango. We’ll likely get our first look at the car during the 2010 Detroit Auto Show, and you can check back starting January 10th for live shots.
[Source: Automotive News]
Chrysler is recalling 40,000 2010 Chrysler 300, Dodge Challenger, Charger and Ram, Jeep Commander and Grand Cherokee vehicles due to a faulty ignition system.
The vehicles use a Wireless Ignition Nodule that has the key sit in a special slot before the vehicle is started. The wireless transmitter could malfunction, allowing the key to be removed before the vehicle is placed in Park. This could cause the vehicle to move unintentionally, increasing the likelihood of a crash.
Dealers will replace the defective part free of charge, and owners are encouraged to contact Chrysler at 1800-853-1403.
[Source: Consumers Report]