The new Chrysler 300C goes on sale today, with prices from £35,995.
It looks the same as the 300C launched in 2005, but this is a new model.
From launch it will be diesel-only, which shows just how far petrol sales have faded for big saloons in the UK – even the Americans have noticed. The 3.0 litre engine provides 296 bhp and fuel economy of 39.8 mpg. CO2 emissions are a less-than-terrible 185 g/km, but that will be a problem for companies that only choose cars under the crucial 160 g/km tax break.
As usual, the 300C will be sold on its looks and equipment. The £39,995 Executive model includes adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring system, forward collision warning, keyless entry, powered rear sunshade, and heated and ventilated Nappa leather seats.
For those that hanker for the traditional V8 American muscle-car, there is likely to be a performance version later. In the US, the petrol engines are standard, so it will not be too difficult to bring them to the UK at some point in the future.
Chrysler will certainly have high hopes of the new model. The previous 300C was the only big saloon not made by a prestige brand that sold in decent numbers. The dealers will certainly prefer taking a few of these than the rebadged Lancia Ypsilon and Delta they have been trying to sell for the last year or so.