2015 Chrysler 200 Long Term Update: Desert Run
It's been two months since our 2015 Chrysler 200C has rolled into our long-term garage and we're continuing to familiarize ourselves with it. What better way to get to know a vehicle than to go on a 750-mile roundtrip road trip with it? That's exactly what we did as we decided to take in a NASCAR race at Phoenix International Raceway this past weekend.
More than meets the eye
From Long Beach, California to Avondale, Arizona, and a few stops in between, we were looking at a 370 mile run. Making the first leg of the journey with us would be our two dogs, which would be staying at a friend's house in Corona, California overnight while we went to Phoenix. Between the backseat and trunk, we had more than enough room to fit two crates and a bag for the dogs plus our two overnight bags. While the Boston Terrier's crate breaks down and is stored in the trunk with ease, the other dog's massive airline-certified container is a headache to take apart. Luckily, by simply sliding the front passenger seat forward, there's room to fit the oversized crate without sacrificing front legroom.
After we dropped off the dogs, we settled in for another 320 miles before reaching a friend's house in Litchfield Park, Arizona where we'd be staying the night. The drive itself was painless as miles quickly slipped away on Interstate 10. Even as the outside temperature continued to climb into the upper 90s, the 200 never broke a sweat. The cruise control was set to 80 mph, the climate control left on automatic, and Bluetooth was working seamlessly to play music off my phone. Before we knew it, Phoenix began to rise from the horizon.
Race and return
The following day we took off for Avondale and found our way to a dirt parking lot directly across from Phoenix International Raceway. Usually midsize sedans don't take kindly to rough dirt parking lots but the 200 seemed to handle the uneven surfaces with ease. Parking and navigating our way out after the race was a breeze as steering is easily manageable at both low and high speeds. After the race, we filled up ($26 for 10 gallons of 87 octane) before heading back to Corona to pick up the dogs. After a quiet, comfortable ride both ways with some time spent in both Corona and Phoenix, we achieved an average of 33.5 mpg.
Our long-term 2015 Chrysler 200C checks out at $30,805 including a $995 destination charge and comes fully stocked. We'll continue to see how life is with Chrysler's all-new-for-2015 200 so check back next month when we have more to report.