Redesigned for 2011, the full-size Chrysler 300 sedan retains its iconic silhouette and is one of the few remaining American rear-wheel-drive sedans. All-wheel drive is available. With seating for five, the Chrysler 300 offers V-6 or V-8 power, and it's also available in high-performance SRT8 guise. Competitors include the Toyota Avalon and Ford Taurus.
New for 2013
The eight-speed automatic transmission is standard with the V-6 engine, and leather upholstery and heated front seats are now standard. The V-6 in the 300S model makes 300 horsepower — 8 hp more than the regular V-6 — thanks to a cold-air induction system and a revised exhaust system. A black roof is optional for the 300S, and the optional Garmin-based navigation system gains improved 3D-map and route-guidance graphics.
A new 300 Glacier model features all-wheel drive, body-color and gloss-black exterior accents, 19-inch aluminum wheels, cloth/leather-trimmed seats, piano-black accents, a leather-wrapped thick-rim steering wheel and Glacier logos.
The 300 has a distinctive grille with horizontal blades, though those who prefer a mesh grille can get one installed through Chrysler's aftermarket Mopar division. In back, the bumper angles forward, meeting the taillights without the conventional ledge where the two elements join. Exterior features include:
- Standard LED daytime running lights
- Standard dual chrome exhaust tips
- Standard 17-inch wheels; 18-, 19- and 20-inch wheels are optional
- Optional high-intensity-discharge headlights
- Optional dual-pane panoramic sunroof
Light-blue gauges sit behind a broad steering wheel, and a standard 8.4-inch center display houses various touch-screen controls, along with the optional navigation system. With the help of a raked windshield, thinner roof pillars and new door frames, the 300 provides increased outward visibility compared with its predecessor. Dual-zone automatic climate control, a power driver's seat and a USB/iPod-compatible stereo are standard. Trunk volume is 16.3 cubic feet. Interior features include:
- Leather upholstery
- Heated front seats
- Optional heated steering wheel
- Optional power-adjustable pedals
- Optional heated and cooled cupholders
Under the Hood
The 3.6-liter V-6 works with an eight-speed automatic transmission. The optional 5.7-liter V-8 pairs with a five-speed automatic. Mechanical features include:
- 292-hp V-6 with 260 pounds-feet of torque; 300S makes 300 hp and 264 pounds-feet of torque
- 363-hp V-8 with 394 pounds-feet of torque and cylinder-deactivation technology
- Both engines can use regular gas
- Rear- or all-wheel drive
Safety features include:
- Side-impact airbags for the front seats
- Side curtain airbags for both rows
- Driver's knee airbag
- Antilock brakes
- Electronic stability system
- Active front head restraints
- Optional blind spot monitoring system
- Optional rear cross path detection
- Optional collision warning system
- Optional front and rear parking sensors
- Optional backup camera
- Optional SmartBeam headlights
The 2013 Chrysler 300 SRT8 combines luxury and high performance in a single car
It's powered by a 6.4-liter V-8 that puts out 470 hp and 470 pounds-feet of torque. According to Chrysler, the big sedan can go from zero to 60 mph in the high 4-second range and has a top speed of 175 mph. Brembo-brand brakes bring the 300 SRT8 to a halt from 60 mph in 120 feet.
The V-8 works with a five-speed automatic transmission that has shift paddles on the leather-wrapped heated steering wheel. The sedan also has an adaptive suspension that has three modes for 2013: Auto, Sport and Track. There's also a newly standard launch control feature that's designed to achieve maximum acceleration from zero to 62 mph. The 300 SRT8 has a distinctive grille and rides a half-inch lower than the regular 300. Dual 4-inch exhaust tips finish the rear. Additional features include SRT-tuned steering and seven-spoke 20-inch forged aluminum wheels.
The cabin features carbon fiber trim and heated and ventilated front seats with the SRT logo embroidered on the backrest. An optional Premium Interior Package adds leather accents to the upper door trim and instrument panel. A Harman Kardon premium stereo is optional, too.
Buyers are also entitled to one day of professional driving instruction as part of the SRT Track Experience. The program, which takes place at select tracks throughout the year, is designed to teach owners driving skills they can use on the track or the street.