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2005 CHRYSLER 300C SRT-8
ON SALE: February 2005
POWERTRAIN: 6.1-liter, 425-hp, 420-lb-ft V8; rwd, five-speed automatic
CURB WEIGHT: 4160 pounds
0 TO 60 MPH: 5.0 seconds (est.)

The 300C SRT-8 should garner a little attention from the bedazzled patrons of the big show, if for no other reason than this: Under the hood breathes a beefed-up and bored-out Hemi V8 packing a 425-hp wallop from 6.1 liters. The thrust-making machine is even decked out with an orange-painted block and black cylinder heads, just like the legendary Hemis of old, some of which are frequent travelers to Laguna Seca and the Monterey Historics, under the hoods of not only Chryslers, but also cars like Cunninghams and Allards. Both were pretty good at challenging Ferraris back in the day.

Squeezing roughly 70 hp from every liter of displacement makes the SRT Hemi the highest specific-output naturally aspirated V8 ever offered by the Chrysler Group. Sure, 70 hp per liter is about what Toyota gets out of a 3.0-liter V6 in the Camry, but we’re talking about pushrod two-valve Detroit iron here, so Dan Knott, director of SRT, is right to brag on his achievement. The handful of engineers working in his shop, hidden away in an industrial park on the other side of the freeway from the Chrysler Technology Center and HQ in Auburn Hills, Michigan, includes a lot of hard-core black-cuticle enthusiasts who tune their own performance cars in their off-hours, of which they’ve had very few lately.

Start with the basics: Bore it out by three millimeters to up displacement from 5.7 to 6.1 liters (6.059 actually), bump the compression ratio to 10.3:1 from the standard 9.6:1, install a high-performance camshaft. It goes deeper than driveway hot-rodding, though, and not only because Chrysler can make the electronics work in concert even while keeping it legal in the eyes of the feds. SRT improves the breathing with larger-diameter, hollow-stem valves and reshaped cylinder ports, fed by a new intake manifold (a thing of beauty under the hood that initially distracted us from the orange block) and steel-tube exhaust headers a quarter-inch larger in diameter than the exhaust manifold in the base Hemi. The SRT-8’s block is reinforced and boasts increased coolant flow, the crankshaft is forged steel, the connecting rods are stronger powdered-metal forgings, the pistons run on floating pins and are cooled by oil squirters, the exhaust valves are sodium-filled, and the oil pan is modified for reduced foaming. With the stronger parts, the SRT version of the Hemi spins nearly 15 percent faster than the base model, putting redline at a respectable 6200 rpm (the electronic cutoff is at 6400) vs. the regular edition’s 5400 rpm.

Niceee! :bow:
 

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What kinda price are we talking about? M5 competitor? Or is it just still the god of the, as C&D called em "Stateside Eights" (a la crown vic, and pontiac V8 cars). Either way it only makes this car more desireable, but I question the market for it, aside from bling blingin' rappers and movie stars of course :roll:

-Wapptor
 

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I think this car will compete nicely w/ the upcoming STS-V which is rumored to have around 425hp as well. The only thing is the Chrysler will likely be $20k cheaper. I definitely think there is a market for this car. Either way, Chrysler has very modest sales goals (I think 5k per year).

:thumbup: Chrysler! I'm planning on buying a 300C next year, but if the pricing on the SRT-8 is less than $45k I will be very tempted.
 

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I just cant look at the 300C without thinking about...

THE CAR

 

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Hmph. This car will have the same problem most of the SRT cars have had so far: They are fast as hell in a straight line..but they fall apart on twisties. I much prefer cadillac's strategy. The CTS-V is a prime example of american muscle done RIGHT. It will carve a track with an M3 all day, get damn near 30 MPG on the freeway, and has room for 4 in comfort. The STS-V? I dont really think that the SRT-8, or the 300C in general are competitors. By all accounts, the new STS is up there with the E-class/5-series/A6, and is good enough to be compared to the S-class/7-series/Phaeton/A8. So, a V-series STS is gonna be a much more balanced, refined car, inside and out. :thumbup: Cadillac for doing things right, and not just putting a big motor in a brick. :suspicio:
 

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since the 300C has suspension from an E-class, I think it will do ok in the twisties...

From Car and Driver:

"In the real world, the 300C instills cornering confidence with negligible body lean and steering that scribes precise arcs. The ride can get a little crusty over bumps, but the chipped-from-granite structure prevents sympathetic rattles and shivers."

And they were able to get a stock 300C to run a 5.3 0-60 followed by a 13.9 @ 102 mph. Imagine what an additional 85hp and 30 lb/ft will do...
 

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JettatoPassat said:
The STS-V? I dont really think that the SRT-8, or the 300C in general are competitors. By all accounts, the new STS is up there with the E-class/5-series/A6, and is good enough to be compared to the S-class/7-series/Phaeton/A8. So, a V-series STS is gonna be a much more balanced, refined car, inside and out. :thumbup: Cadillac for doing things right, and not just putting a big motor in a brick. :suspicio:
Obviously you haven't driven the 300C. I've had the pleasure to have one as a rental car for a week (yes, Hemi and all) and I was very suprised/impressed. It managed not only to be much more luxurious than my Passat, but also had less body lean and brake drive. Either way, no one including yourself has yet to drive the SRT-8 or upcoming STS-V so it remains to be seen which is the better car. If there is any one area where I think the Cadillac stands out in comparison to the 300C it is the interior which is more rich looking. Most other areas the 300C comes out ahead in my book (value, horsepower, styling, etc.)

As for your comments about the STS, here is what Automobile had to say in their September issue: "If the STS faces a problem, it is simply this. Far from posing a challenge for cross-shopping 7-Series intenders, as Cadillac suggests, the STS will have to slug it out with cheaper cars, such as the excellent Chrysler 300 and the very fine CTS, which resides below Cadillac's hierarchy yet shares the same architecture and V-6 engine, provides imperceptibly less passenger accommodation, and is available for considerably less money."
 

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DenimA4CVT said:
It doesn't come as a surprise 300/Magnum have such a nice handling capabilites, thanks to its Mercedes W210 chassis. 8)
Actually, that's a common misconception. The 300/Magnum do not have a MB chassis, but rather a Chrysler designed chassis. They do however have a MB 5-speed automatic (in the Hemi models), suspension design from the previous E-Class and available 4Matic AWD. Aside from that, there are some small interior bits shared w/ Mercedes (steering column and stalks, gear shift knob, etc.)
 

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very promising for Chrysler, however will anyone accept a $45,000+ Chrysler sedan? Also the exterior doesn't say anything special for this SRT version, there should definately be some more dramatic styling variation to set it apart from the base model which will cost about half it's price, especailly when Chrysler doesn't have any prestige associated with them and also not that established in the sport market.

Personally I like the bad-boy gangster look, but the interior (though still a nice improvement in terms of American cars) needs to get the quality and fit and finish a little more up to par with it's japanese and german counterparts.

I would take this SRT-8 in wagon form (currently only available in Europe) and in black on black (deep tinted windows, of course), and with splashings of chrome, now that's bad ass! :thumbup:
 

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aowhaus said:
very promising for Chrysler, however will anyone accept a $45,000+ Chrysler sedan? Also the exterior doesn't say anything special for this SRT version, there should definately be some more dramatic styling variation to set it apart from the base model which will cost about half it's price, especailly when Chrysler doesn't have any prestige associated with them and also not that established in the sport market.
The 300C's which can top out at $36g+ have been selling in record numbers. I think it nothing else Chrysler will have not problem selling its quota of SRT-8's.

As for the look of the base model and the hemi looking fairly similar, but having a price difference of almost 50%, its true. But some people like the more stealth look.

Sure they could of put racing stripes down the middle, and a huge spoiler on the back, but I prefere the "understated look"

If you look at it, it has larger wheels and tires, a lowered ride height, big dual exhaust on the back, and a small SRT-8 badge.

Also think of the difference of a Passat GL, and a Passat W8......
 

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Mopar is supposed to set the price right around the 40K mark, and I doubt there will be tons of options.

IMO, 30K used to be the price cutoff between a solid, well built car and something with a bit of luxury. Now it seems that number has moved up around 40K, thanks to SUV's, etc. So Chrysler should have no problem with that price strategy. Remember, too, Chryslers own LHS some years back was almost 35K (and sold very well), its replacement the 300M flirted with 37K loaded. So for a far superior car, its well worth it.

Oh yeah - I'll take two :D
 

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off topic, but I still want to see Chrysler come out with a 300C sans all the luxury stuff.

the Hemi, with cloth, no navi, ect... get it at a price of about $27g's
 

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BooRadley said:
I just cant look at the 300C without thinking about...

THE CAR

HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK HONK!


"It sounds like it is laughing".
 

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Actually, Jwaters, I have driven a 300C, and have had the pleasure of driving the CTS-V and CTS, not the new STS. So, I think I can draw certain conclusions about the 300. While not a wallowing boat, you can tell how big the car is. Thats okay, just saying that is does not compare well at all against the CTS (especially the V, which competes with M3 and M5 track times) in the handling department. From what reviews I have read (the Automobile, as well as the Car and Driver and Motor Trend articles), the STS is firmly near the top of the heap compared to its true competitors, the E-class/5-series/A6/M45/S-type. I just dont see the 300C competing there.

I would roll one, of course, but not if I were offered the keys to a CTS or STS in the same sitting.

As for styling, thats subjective, I will admit. I again prefer the Art and Science theme from Cadillac. As far as value is concerned, I would almost say even that is subjective. All those years of development work at the Nurburgring might not be worth anything when flooring a Hemi to some people..but it means a lot to me, especially that an American car company put that much work into the WHOLE car, just the engine.

300C= fast, excellent pimp car
Cadillac line=fast, responsive world-class car.
 

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i swear i saw this car outside the DaimlerChrysler headquarters a week or two ago. i tried to follow it near my hotel but base-model PT Cruiser rentals don't have much get up OR go!

i think there are probably 5-10 disguised/primered 300Cs outside the wing I work in.

i actually was talking with an SRT engineer the other morning and thought he said something about a turbo edition, but i might be all mixed up.
 
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