The Chrysler Pacific kicked off the North American International Auto Show by receiving the first ever North American Utility of the Year Award. The jury of journalists likely recognized the goodness of the overall package, but no doubt were influenced by the class-exclusive plug-in hybrid drivetrain. The Pacific Hybrid offers an all-electric driving range of 33 miles and delivers an overall EPA rating of 84 MPGe. The overall driving range with combined electric and gas power is a respectable 566 miles. The gas side of the hybrid equation is an upgraded 287 horsepower 3.6L Pentastar V6 mated to a 9-speed automatic. The battery pack locates under the floor, so minivan buyers in love with the stow-and-go seating will have to sacrifice that versatility. Eight passenger seating also is not available on the Hybrid so you’ll have to limit your passenger count to seven. It appears that with the Pacifica Hybrid, the inventors of the modern minivan are not content to give up their stronghold on the market.
It feels weird typing this, but the new Chrysler minivan that debuted today was not a Town & Country, or even a Caravan for that matter. Nope, Chrysler is naming their new family hauler Pacifica, just like the not-particularly-successful Pacifica that once fought the crossover battle for Chrysler way back when it was married to Daimler. Despite that surprising twist, the actual product looks about how we’d expect it to. Chrysler’s 200 sedan lends its look to the front end and the side and rear are fresh enough to get years down the road before demanding a facelift. The big news besides the name was the Plug-in Hybrid model that will travel 30 miles on a charge and return 80 MPGe even after firing up the 3.6 liter V6. You lose the ability to stow the middle row of seats (a Chrysler minivan trademark), but that seems a small price to pay for saving the planet. Pricing wasn’t announced but the new minivans should be at soccer games near you this fall.
In the course of a press conference Chrysler has gone from second string to major player in the midsize sedan market with the all-new 2015 200S and 2ooC. The 200 seeks to erase the frumpy memory of past models by offering a stunning 4-door coupe body with upscale surface treatments and detailing not usually found at this price point. The front and rear lamps use LED accents and the narrow grille opening and prominent winged Chrysler badge debut the newly refined face of the company’s car line. Mechanically the 20o offers more than ever before with your choice of a 2.4-liter I4 (good for at least 35 mpg highway) or 295 hp 3.6-liter V6 matched to a standard 9-speed automatic and all-wheel drive with the V6. Chrysler says the 200S emphasizes sportiness and the 200C is the luxury tip of the lineup. However, when the doors swing open both models are way ahead of the competition. Great two-tone color schemes and uniquely finished wood trim along with plenty of metallic details make the new 200 feel a class above its class. The available 8.4″ UConnect infotainment system is present and the available heated steering wheel will be appreciated by demanding young buyers. The Chevrolet Malibu had better start printing some big rebate checks when this thing goes on sale later this year because the 200 is finally ready to steal some customers.
The grumblings coming out of the Windy City this auto show season have been clear. The GMC Acadia is aged and is barely getting a facelift after 6 model years on the market. But look closer folks. That large crossover you see with the gleaming red GMC badge is hardly an Acadia. No, that my friend, is a facelifted Saturn Outlook. Read more…
Once upon a time ago, a healthier Chrysler churned out and brought to the streets concept cars by the droves. One such concept that seemed to be on a surefire track to the assembly line was the ME Four-Twelve. Debuting at the 2004 NAIAS, the ME Four-Twelve sported a 12-cylinder quad-turbo mid-mounted engine good for 850-hp and 850 lb-ft of torque. The body was made of carbon fiber and as a result the car weighed in at just 2880-lbs. Sadly, the ME Four-Twelve was sent to the Walter P. Chrylser museum so as not to compete with its then stable mate, the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren.
The 2005 Chrysler Crossfire roadster enjoys time down by the river.
I usually detest driving big cars.
It’s not because they’re ugly or slow — which many of them are — but because they remind me of my grandma’s car, an old Chrysler Fifth Avenue that wallowed through corners like its suspension was made of oatmeal and rubber bands. It felt more like piloting a boat than driving an automobile. Read more…
When Chrysler introduced the Pacifica in 2004, it was a fantastic family vehicle with only one problem.
Many families couldn’t afford it.
Chrysler tried to make the Pacifica an upscale station wagon with leather seats, fancy technology, and lots of luxurious features to guarantee people knew that Chrysler was now owned by Mercedes. It was a great vehicle — still is — but its starting price over $30,000 was more than many families could stomach. Read more…
A Homerun Even Without The Hemi
The Hemi-powered Chrysler 300C has been subject to media exposure approximately equal to Scott Petersen being on trial during a Janet Jackson half-time show. Lesser (read: V6-powered) 300s, however, have garnered the equivalent of a below-the-fold sidebar about the best M.C. Hammer tune. We nonetheless know that a healthy number of 300s are being sold sans Hemi power and that there are plenty of people out there who lack the desire (hard to believe) or means (more likely) to buy a top-of-the-line 300C. It is for these people that The Left Lane is challenging the status quo and reviewing a mid-level run-of-the-mill 300 Touring. OK, you know us better than that. Truth is we tried everything this side of bribing Dieter himself (all right, we tried that too) to get our hands on a tire-melting Hemi-powered 300C. The problem was that everyone else in our industry wanted one too. Our Chrysler PR guy suggested a week in the 300 Touring instead. He was confident that the Touring would be sufficient to win us over. He was right. Read more…
1.) Lower The Top
2.) Put On Sunglasses
3.) Bask In The Glare Of Jealous Drivers
Oh, the attention you can garner driving one of these. It isn’t so much that the Crossfire is an exotic looking car as it is just plain different. A fresh design idea you could call it. Whatever it is, it grabbed our attention, and that of several members of the greater Detroit area. I personally would like to think of it as one of the classiest roadsters to come from an American automaker yet—or at least a formerly American automaker. Though by the time you read this (for the northern half of the country that is) it will more than likely be snowing and well past the season for wind in your hair driving! Read more…