2006 Chrysler 300C SRT8 Auto Review

16 Jan 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on 2006 Chrysler 300C SRT8 Auto Review

Chrysler 300C

2006 Chrysler 300C SRT8

Return of the elegant brute

Dan Lyons on 04.01.2006

When Chrysler brought out their new generation of 300 cars in 2005, they took some flack from purists. Some keepers of the Mopar flame grumbled about the use of Letter Car status for the new model. A brief history lesson: The first 300s were built between 1955 and 1971.

All 300s produced between 1955 and 61, and some built between 1962 and 65, were Letter Cars. Each was branded with an alphabetic letter-the 300C, for example-and backed by some serious hardware. During the late 1950s and early 1960s, these were full-sized, fire breathing muscle machines that were pricey, low in production, and elegantly arrogant.


Chrysler 300C


Since day one, buyers and customizers have been talking about the 300C’s distinctive design: the blunt front, the egg crate grille, its chiseled, square shouldered looks with high belt line and low, chopped greenhouse-an aftermarket manufacturer’s dream that has been seen on the street in countless one-off variations. The launch of the SRT8 brings an original spin to the 300’s style, showing subtle changes to front and rear fascia, adding discrete badging, and bluish, HID headlamps.

The wheel wells are packed with a set of none-too-subtle, 10-spoke 20-inch alloy rims, shod with phat (and fat) Goodyear Eagle tires. Color choices are curiously subdued for 2006 as Silver Steel joins Bright Silver and Brilliant Black on the SRT8 paint charts. Discrete hues are always good choices for stealth motoring, but even the Letter Cars way back in the day had some red in their genes.

What’s found under the hood, however, is anything but understated. Pop the latch, peek around the plastic and you’ll see a HEMI Orange painted big block, a bored out, 6.1 liter Hemi head V-8 putting out 425 hp (@6,000 rpm) and 420 lb.-ft. of torque (@4,800 rpm). Chrysler makes their new generation HEMIs in several different flavors.

You’ll find the 6.1 under the Take-no-prisoners section of the menu. As is the case in the disturbingly appealing Magnum SRT8, the 370 cubic inch big HEMI in the 300 makes for a tire roasting good time. Beyond the cylinder boring, SRT tuning tricks include high flow aluminum heads, larger than standard intake runners, and bigger diameter valves. Even with its brick-like profile, 60 miles an hour arrives in about five seconds, and the quarter mile arrives in the low 13-second range.

As good as it goes, so too it stops, traversing the old Cobra 0-60-0 benchmark in roughly 16 seconds. Power flows evenly though the five-speed automatic transmission and, when stood on, the engine plays a soundtrack straight from the ’60s: Mopar Muscle’s Greatest Hits.

Chrysler 300C
Chrysler 300C
Chrysler 300C
Chrysler 300C
Chrysler 300C

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