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2013 Chrysler 300

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2013 Chrysler 300 Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 8.7

Chrysler's 300 sedan for 2013 continues the Detroit tradition of producing big, rear-wheel-drive (RWD) V8-powered sedans that are all about power, comfort and style. The 300 improves upon this formula by adding all-wheel drive (AWD) and a potent yet fuel-efficient V6 to the mix, as well as a high-performance version, the SRT8. Despite its family-car roots, the 2013 Chrysler 300 handles like a well-heeled German sport sedan, is as smooth and silent as the best Lexus and can be had for thousands less than most premium luxury competitors. Still, the 300 has not abandoned its mission as a true 5-passenger vehicle, offering copious amounts of rear-seat head and legroom. Unfortunately, the trade-off for the 300's roomy back seat is a somewhat small trunk.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you love the driving performance provided by a rear-drive sedan, yet you also need room for five people, great fuel economy and a sophisticated set of electronic information and entertainment systems, the 2013 Chrysler 300 should prove most satisfying.

You May Not Like This Car If...

There is a price to pay for the 300's opulent interior and upgraded navigation, audio and performance options. You can likely find a V6-powered, front-wheel-drive competitor from Ford, Toyota or Hyundai that offers similar performance, fuel economy and technology for much less money.

What's New for 2013

For 2013, the base Chrysler 300 receives standard leather seating, an 8.4-inch voice-controlled touchscreen radio and heated front seats. The 300S gains a 300-horsepower upgrade. A limited-run Glacier Edition includes AWD and unique design appointments, while the SRT8 gets an improved adaptive dampening suspension and standard launch control.

Driving the 300
Driving Impressions

It's hard to argue against the 2013 Chrysler 300, which offers a choice of a potent V6 or V8 engine, a responsive suspension and steering setup and the option of...

... AWD. Our test of the 300C equipped with the 3.6-liter V6 and 8-speed transmission revealed a car capable of delivering Lexus-like quiet and comfort on the highway, while feeling more like an Infiniti sedan in the curves. We did find the 8-speed's shifter a bit imprecise, especially when trying to select reverse, but the transmission itself delivers seamless shifts and excellent fuel economy. If, however, you seek a sedan on par with the best from BMW or Audi, look to the powerful 300 SRT8. Its 470-horsepower HEMI V8 can rocket it from zero to 60 mph in under 5 seconds and achieve a top speed of 175 mph. You'll sacrifice some ride comfort and quiet, but the trade-off for the SRT8's blistering performance is something most enthusiasts can accept.

8.4-INCH TOUCH SCREEN
The 2013 Chrysler 300 sedan's big 8.4-inch view screen features clear, easy-to-read-and-operate controls for the audio and available navigation. The UConnect Touch infotainment system allows control of an iPod via the steering-wheel remotes or voice activation and features hands-free texting.

QUIET HIGHWAY RIDE
Chrysler's 300 sedan for 2013 certainly offers a plethora of tech-based features worth highlighting, but the most memorable first impression is the remarkably quiet cabin and supple ride.

2013 Chrysler 300 Details
Interior

Compared to the last-generation 300, the 2013 sedan's interior is the difference between an army-surplus cot and a goose-down feather bed. Gone are the drab gray plastics and hard surfaces, replaced by warm tones, padded armrests and console and a dazzling array of back-lit instrumentation. If you like thick-rimmed steering wheels, you'll be happy to find in the Chrysler 300 one of the world's thickest. The flagship 300C Luxury Series models are even more luxurious, offering such items as a leather-stitched dash cap, two-tone leather seating and heated and cooling 12-way power seats.

Exterior

The familiar silhouette of the original 300 is still easily recognizable on the Chrysler 300 for 2013, but there is a softer, more mature feel to the design. Intricate details, such as the vertical crease in the rear tail lamps, the chrome air-intake surrounds and LED daytime running lamps speak to the Chrysler 300's luxury status. The 300 SRT8 makes no such claim, displaying a more monochrome exterior with low ground effects and 7-spoke lightweight forged-aluminum wheels. But even the base 300 gets the star treatment, with attractive paint and chrome trim, 17-inch wheels and a host of available upgrades.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

For 2013, the entry-priced Chrysler 300 sedan represents a lot of car for the money. Standard equipment includes keyless entry and start, a big 8.4-inch touchscreen with climate and music controls, Bluetooth phone and streaming audio, USB/iPod/SD card connectivity, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather seating, a 12-way power driver's seat with 4-way power lumbar support, tilt/telescopic steering wheel, cruise control, heated front seats, 17-inch painted aluminum wheels, one-touch up/down windows all around and a full complement of active and passive safety features including side-curtain airbags, driver's-knee airbag, hill-start assist and electronic stability control.

Optional Equipment

In addition to the 363-horsepower V8 engine, all-wheel drive and navigation system a 2013 Chrysler 300C AWD loaded with all the options will include an impressive list of high-tech luxuries: Radar-based adaptive cruise control and forward collision warning systems up front, rear cross-path sensors out back and blind-spot monitoring to help out on the side. In-cabin highlights include heated and cooled cup holders and a 900-watt, 19-speaker harman/kardon audio system.

Under the Hood

The 2013 Chrysler 300's 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 is the most powerful base engine in the category. The 300S trim receives a cold-air induction unit and sport-tuned exhaust for an increase of eight horsepower. The 5.7-liter HEMI V8 has just slightly less horsepower than the Ford SHO's twin-turbocharged EcoBoost V6, but a substantially larger amount of torque. The SRT8's 6.4-liter monster pumps out 470 horsepower, more than anything in this class. On V6 trims a new 8-speed ZF transmission helps boost fuel economy figures to best in class. The V8-powered 300s retain a 5-speed Auto Stick automatic.

3.6-liter V6 (300, 300C)
292 horsepower @ 6,350 rpm
260 lb-ft of torque @ 4,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/31 mpg (RWD), 14/23 mpg (RWD, E85), 18/27 mpg (AWD), 14/20 mpg (AWD, E85)

3.6-liter V6 (300S)
300 horsepower @ 6,350 rpm
264 lb-ft of torque @ 4,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/31 mpg (RWD), 14/23 mpg (RWD, E85), 18/27 mpg (AWD), 14/20 mpg (AWD, E85)

5.7-liter V8 (300S, 300C)
363 horsepower @ 5,200 rpm
394 lb-ft of torque @ 4,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/25 mpg (RWD), 15/23 mpg (AWD)

6.4-liter V8 (SRT-8)
470 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
470 lb-ft of torque @ 4,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/23 mpg

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