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2020 Chrysler 300 delayed or cancelled?

Discussion in 'Mopar News' started by GaryS, Dec 25, 2019.

  1. redriderbob

    redriderbob Mopar Guru!
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    There is a problem with the modern day sedan. The fact is sedans are designed to be stiff and every car has to have some kind of performance gimmick.

    Gone are the highway cruisers were you could hit a pothole doing 40 mph and not feel it. Comfort isn't the priority anymore.

    For example, my 2014 Dodge Charger R/T Plus AWD Sport. I love it. Great all around muscle car in a sport sedan body, however, when I bought my 2019 Ram 1500 Laramie Sport Crew Cab 4x4, I realized how much more comfortable the Ram was to drive.

    The Ram hits bumps with ease on the rough Michigan roads, actually gets better fuel economy than my Charger and has even more room to stretch out in and haul stuff.

    I still love the Charger, but find myself sore from hitting all the bumps in it because of low it sits and how stiff the suspension is. I enjoy driving it, but find myself going to the Ram when I just want to go somewhere comfortably. The Charger is still 10x more fun to drive, so that's why I kept it.

    I think a lot of people have found SUVs, CUVs, and trucks to be more all around practical. More room, driving comfort, and more commanding presence on the road sitting up higher.

    20190504_195818.jpg
     
  2. Zagnut27

    Zagnut27 Jeepaholic

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    My A3 is fun to drive, but I'm scared to death to get it near a pothole, especially after shredding a tire on my way into work. And considering the roads up to Philly often look like they've been carpet bombed, it is often a struggle to avoid said potholes. Amazingly enough, my Mustang tolerates the bumps and jolts better than the A3. It's probably the fault of the low profile tires on the A3.

    But I don't see any more sedans or coupes in my future. For what I use a vehicle for, they just aren't that practical. I have 2 Rottweiler-Lab-mixed-mutts. I'm not going to even try to fit them into the back seat of the A3 or the Mustang. But then, I'd have to put the seats down in the Encore for them to fit. They could fit in the trunk space of my dearly departed Liberty, though I always put the seats down for them. The A3 and Mustang can't haul as much "stuff" as the Encore or Liberty either.

    So the SUV's/CUV's win in the durability and usability departments. A hatchback or wagon would probably be as useful as a SUV or CUV, but then that's really what they are, aren't they? They've pretty much taken over for the hatchback and wagon versions of cars?

    Our next purchase will be a family hauler, 3-row SUV (I think I've been saying this for the past 10 years...oh wait, I have been...). We're going to look at Durango, Explorer, Acadia, Telluride, and Discovery Sport. Trunk space will probably narrow that list down to Durango and Explorer, and with the recent issues with Explorer, that'll probably leave Durango in sole possession of first place. Unless the 3-row Grand Cherokee vehicle comes out before we purchase this year. In that case, all bets are off. :D

    After that, then it'll probably be a Gladiator for me. But a Rebel is still the dark horse choice. We'll cross that bridge when we come to it.

    But NO MORE CARS (for me). :p
     
  3. wolfsblood07

    wolfsblood07 Active Member

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    To me a sedan is the best choice. I need a trunk, I don't need an open bed pickup truck. I like the handling of a car over an SUV. I don't need to be sitting "up high" when I drive. SUVs and CUVs and minivans all have their place, but they are not for everyone. I've driven all of them. I get excited by sedans and coupes, both new and old. If I walk through a car show I may pay cursory attention to a truck, but I'll be spending the vast majority of time looking at the awesome sedans!
     
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  4. Ryan

    Staff Member Level III Supporter

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    I'm kind of the opposite now. Sedans and coupes aren't exciting to me anymore. Instead, I think it's more exciting when the engineers manage to achieve sports-car-like handling in a crossover or SUV with far more practicality.
     
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  5. plymouth1

    plymouth1 Well-Known Member

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    I have thought about getting one before they are gone. The lower end can be optioned to look high end on the outside and the price is terrific for what you get. BUT my girlfriend says no more cars. I'm trying to hold off until some new Dodge and Chrysler product comes out before I just have to "settle" for a Ram or Jeep
     
  6. TheViking

    TheViking Active Member

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    Rented a Durango R/T recently and while not as nice as the GC I was really impressed overall. Felt well built, sounded good and much quicker then I expected. Could use an interior update but for the money it was very nice.

    I still think the 300 could do well with a mild update, AWD option on all models and the upcoming I6. As long as they priced it well under the European luxury competitors it obviously wouldn't have much domestic competition.
     
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  7. aldo90731

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    That’s similar to the process most people undergo when they get into a body-on-frame truck. Once you get used to the quiet ride and isolation of BoF, it is hard to go back to unibody: you feel every pothole and rut reverberating through the suspension to the entire body structure.

    The auto industry and the press convinced us that RWD BoF was a thing of the past, and FWD unibody was the way to the future. Yet here we are buying pickup trucks in record numbers 35 years later.

    I believe that the reason people are buying BoF trucks is partly because you can get a quality of ride, a feeling of refinement —and a greater freedom of customization— you cannot get anywhere else for that kind of money. Aided by stable fuel prices, of course.

    Toyota is about to start such a trend with upcoming Tacoma and a Tundra sharing the same frame, including hybrid power trains. I wouldn’t be surprised if it makes it easier and cheaper for them to build next 4Runner, and bring back FJ Cruiser as well.

    It’d be interesting if anyone found a way to bring back the RWD BoF CAR in a more modern interpretation. It could make “platform” sharing a lot easier and cheaper, too.
     
    #47 aldo90731, Dec 31, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2019
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  8. valiant67

    valiant67 ...

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    But Chrysler of the past could build solid unibody RWD cars that stood up fine in ride and comfort compared to the BOF Ford and GM vehicles of the time. Even the K car managed to provide a decent ride. Then a few things happened:
    1) Automakers started listening to the automotive press that constantly denigrated the typical American isolated ride and gushed about Japanese and especially European handling instead.
    2) Cars began to sit lower to reduce wind resistance. Look at many of the modern CUVs and SUVs. They don't really sit that much higher than 1970s sedans.
    3) Cars were especially handicapped by economy regulations which led to forced downsizing. What no one considered was the unintended consequences. Forcing cars to be more fuel efficient drove people out of cars and into trucks and SUVs which got worse mileage than the old large sedans.
    4) Aerodynamics and people that claim they want "sporty" cars eliminated easy of entry and exit and compromised trunk access.

    I went from a 1989 Chrysler Fifth Avenue to a 2005 Chrysler 300C. The interiors were very different. The Fifth had plush seats and a smooth ride, but didn't have much support for long trips. The 300C had firmer seats and suspension, and it provided a good ride until the roads got rough. then you felt it more. The 300C had better power and better fuel economy. The 300C also scraped its belly going into one of my favorite restaurant parking lot with 2 or more people in the car. The Fifth Avenue never did. The 300C, like every other L based car I had, especially the Challengers, wanted to rip off the front spoiler if you ever pulled to close to the stop in a parking spot. The Fifth never did. Both cars had large trunks, but I had to put things in the back seat of the 300 that I could put in the trunk of the Fifth because of the trunk opening.

    I think the sedan market is due for a true observational voice of the customer like Dodge did with he 1994 Ram. Look at what works and doesn't work in car design. Don't just ask people if they want a "sporty" sedan.
     
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  9. Tony K

    Tony K Active Member

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    At this point, what with both Ford and GM bowing out of full-size sedans, I don't know why they aren't planning to keep the 300 or at least keep a RWD Chrysler sedan twin/triplet to the Charger and Challenger, aside from overall economics that only FCA fully knows. Maybe we'll get lucky and the PSA merger will resurrect something.

    We're buying pickups (and/or large BOF SUVs) in record numbers partially because it's political suicide to raise fuel taxes in the U.S., not to mention inequitable to the least well-off, especially given the lack of public transportation in most of the nation. If fuel taxes were raised to the equilibrium point where taxes meet road maintenance requirements, consumer purchasing decisions would change drastically toward smaller vehicles. Just a SWAG, but I dare to say it could be worse than Sweden, simply because we have so many more roadway miles per capita. I think Sweden's fuel price was something like $8/gal equivalent in the early 2000s, about double that of Germany. That's part of the reason why German roads are so much better than ours - fewer miles per capita. They don't have all those county roads criss-crossing the state every mile on a square grid and houses scattered about, more of which now are paved than 20 years ago. It's almost all urban or small towns with connecting roads between.

    There is plenty to be said both for and against BoF, but I don't know what kind of engineering is required to meet passenger car FMVSS and how BoF can be engineered to meet that, but I can't imagine that engineering a ladder frame to meet Passenger Car FMVSS is a very easy or cheap task relative to unibody.
     
  10. aldo90731

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    It can't be done...until someone does it. That's how innovation normally works.
     
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  11. hmk123

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    I think part of the original 300's success was that Bentley feel it gave some. I just saw a Throttle House YouTube review of the Rolls Royce. I wonder if Chrysler did an XL version of the 300 how well that would sell. In your face but with also much more interior space. Give it AWD and a detuned Hellcat. But the market for something like that is probably very limited...
     
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  12. Bearhawke

    Bearhawke Things happen for a reason

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    What I bolded is possibly the main reason why so-called 'passenger cars' started to really drop in sales. Model year 1975 brought the catalytic converter and, 1978 saw CAFE regs first appearing. The main reason Mopar dropped the 440 Magnum was due to its lack of fuel economy, apparently, it still met emissions standards, if discussing 1979+ cars, despite said 440 being dropped in 1978.
     
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  13. Tony K

    Tony K Active Member

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    Who knew? :rolleyes: I was just eluding to the possibility that the juice may not be worth the squeeze.
     
  14. Doug D

    Doug D Virginia Gentleman

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    That was one of the smartest things Dodge did. They didn't just ask what truck users wanted. Dodge watched "how" owners used their trucks and came up with some very good features to enhance/help the truck customer.
     
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  15. Tin Man 2

    Tin Man 2 Active Member

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    We're buying pickups (and/or large BOF SUVs) in record numbers partially because it's political suicide to raise fuel taxes in the U.S., not to mention inequitable to the least well-off, especially given the lack of public transportation in most of the nation. If fuel taxes were raised to the equilibrium point where taxes meet road maintenance requirements, consumer purchasing decisions would change drastically toward smaller vehicles.
    There is plenty of money from fuel tax right now, If the Politicions used the money for the roads instead of pet projects to gather votes
     
  16. 77 Monaco Brougham

    77 Monaco Brougham Active Member

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    If memory serves, Not only were the 400 and 440 CID engines discontinued, but I believe I remember the tooling being destroyed also.

    That's why when Dodge was working on the first generation Viper...they didn't have an in-house big block engine to use as a starting point. That's how 2 extra cylinders got added to the small-block 360 CID V8.

    The rest...as they say...is history.
     
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  17. redriderbob

    redriderbob Mopar Guru!
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    The Viper was always intended to be a V-10. Lutz wanted a V-10 from the start of the concept. There was only one V-8 Viper built the #2 prototype.

    They were already well into the development of the 488ci V-10 for the trucks. To save money, they asked then Chrysler owned Lamborghini to make an aluminum version of the truck block that was under development so that Dick Winkles and team could build a higher performance variant. The truck engine and Viper GEN 1 motor are quite different.
     
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  18. patfromigh

    patfromigh Well-Known Member

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    Americans love large cars. Even if fuel prices rose dramatically, Americans would still prefer pickup trucks and SUVs. Look where the plug-in hybrid vehicle battle line is being drawn up. It's along C and D segment crossover market. I have no idea if FCA will let the Jeep Compass hybrid technology be offered here, but FCA keeps a lot of irons in the fire.

    The domestic automakers strategy for the early days of the CAFE regulations was to pump out subcompacts in vast numbers at give away prices. Consumers were in a panic because of the sudden rise in fuel costs and they bought the cheap four cylinder cars. Many of those same people are now driving large SUVs and pickup trucks.

    Jeep and Ram have changed the equation offering by 48V in their rear drive vehicles, and Wrangler will soon have a PHEV option.

    Chrysler needs something to compete against the Cadillac XT6. Chrysler no longer has to rise to Cadillac's market since Cadillac has come down to Chrysler's.
     
  19. LouJC

    LouJC Active Member

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    Sedans? unibody vs BOF?
    Well I recall when the whole industry started to shift over away from large BOF cars to downsize unibody FWD cars, it was right around 1978-1980 coinciding with 2 oil shocks where the price of gas had risen from approx. .45 a gallon in 1973, to about .80 a gallon in 1974, then again in 1979 from .85 or so to 1.50. That was the major shake up factor because for the first time since wartime rationing you couldn't easily get gas. And those cars even with their faults were pretty revolutionary for the US market, yet US manufacturers built superior cars in Europe which was also a frustration to me.

    Anyway I have gone through this same sedan/coupe vs suv question myself. I want a Challenger or a Charger, at least a 5.7 if not 6.4, yet a Grand Cherokee 5.7 or better yet SRT, is nearly as fast, a lot more practical in northern climes if you have only one vehicle and as you get older, the seating position is much more comfortable. Not as high as a pick up (too high for me) but not too low. And even though its a unibody vehicle, the ride is not harsh by any means. In fact I have not given up my old '07 Grand Cherokee 5.7 for this reason. It does most things well not fast like a muscle car but fast enough to be fun. SUVs sell because of all around utility.

    BOF vs Unibody, the trend was established to reduce weight. Best example was the 1984 Jeep Cherokee. Look at how much trimmer and lighter it was than the old SJ Wagoneer. While not as rugged in certain ways, certainly strong enough for a 15+ year life span. Ultimately BOF is best in certain applications due to design issues, but for weight saving unibody is used pretty much universally. The Comanche was one of the first unibody (with a short subframe for the box) pick ups, along with the VW Rabbit pick up and the Chrysler twins. But ultimately BOF makes more sense than unibody for pick ups due to more flexibility in design.
     
  20. Tony K

    Tony K Active Member

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    Since when? Most of the funds for road maintenance are from the general fund, and not because of "pet projects," whatever kind of dogwhistle that is.

    Debunking the Myth That Because of the Gas Tax, Only Drivers Pay for Roads - CityLab (at https://www.citylab.com/transportation/2015/05/debunking-the-myth-that-only-drivers-pay-for-roads/393134/ )
     
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