Should the 2019 Chrysler 300 (CY 2018) be FWD?
Arguments for RWD (Rear-Wheel-Drive).
*RWD is associated by many with performance and "luxury."
*The Chrysler 300 is the flagship of the Chrysler brand and the FCA US LLC group.
*Chrysler has a history of producing large, bold, brash, RWD sedans.
*One of the primary selling points of the Chrysler 300 since 2005 has been RWD.
Arguments for FWD (Front-Wheel-Drive).
*Chrysler is not a "luxury" or performance brand. Even if it were a "luxury" brand, other automakers (Audi, Cadillac
) have shown that "luxury" buyers will accept FWD and FWD-derived AWD vehicles.
*A Chrysler 300 FWD sedan would fit with its "mainstream" identity.
*Chrysler's LH FWD full-size sedans have been generally well-regarded by critics, customers, and enthusiasts.
*A FWD layout is preferable to many customers and could allow for a more spacious interior.
*Putting the Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger on different platforms would reduce product overlap.
*If sold with a wide range of trims and therefore prices, a FWD Chrysler 300 could compete with both "mainstream" vehicles like the Chevrolet Impala and Ford Taurus as well as "luxury" vehicles like the Cadillac XTS and Lincoln MKS.
How the 300 could be designed on CUSW.
Below are listed the dimensions (from Wikipedia
) for the 2015 Chrysler 200 and the GM full-size FWD sedans (Cadillac XTS and Chevrolet Impala
A FWD Chrysler 300, similar in size to the GM sedans, could be created by stretching the 200 by 10 inches or so in overall length, with 4-6 inches added to the wheelbase and the rest added behind the rear wheels to create a larger trunk.
The 200 is actually wider than the GM sedans by 0.6-0.7 inches, and it is only 0.2-0.4 inches or less shorter than them in height.
Wheelbase: 108.0 in (2,742 mm)
Length: 192.3 in (4,884.7 mm)
Width: 73.7 in (1,871 mm)
Height: 58.7 in (1,491 mm)
Wheelbase: 111.7 inches (2,840 mm)
Length: 201.3 inches (5,110 mm)
Width: 73 inches (1,900 mm)
Height: 58.9 in (1,496 mm)
Wheelbase: 111.7 in (2,837 mm)
Length: 202 in (5,131 mm)
Width: 72.9 in (1,852 mm)
Height: 59.1 in (1,501 mm)
If the wheelbase of the 200 is stretched by 4-6 inches, bringing the wheelbase of the 300 to 112-114 inches, it could also be the basis of the 2019 Chrysler D-CUV (also CY 2018
), if the CUV is roughly the same size as the current Dodge Journey.
Wheelbase: 113.8 in (2,891 mm)
Length: 192.4 in (4,887 mm)
Width: 72.2 in (1,834 mm)
Height: 66.6 in (1,692 mm)
While it seems odd that the Chrysler D-CUV is not coming until 2018, while the Jeep is already out and the Dodge is coming in 2016, it seems possible that the delay is due to it being co-developed with a CUSW Chrysler 300 sharing the same wheelbase.
Assembly plant utilization.
A FWD CUSW Chrysler 300 and a Journey-sized Chrysler D-CUV would most likely be built at Sterling Heights alongside the Chrysler 200, possibly on the old currently unused assembly line. If CUSW and RU can be produced on the same assembly lines, any excess capacity at the Windsor minivan plant could also be utilized.
The Dodge Durango (if switched to the "Lx" full-size car platform
) could take the Chrysler 300's place at Brampton, leaving the WK3/WL Grand Cherokee (CY 2017
) and Grand Wagoneer (CY 2018
) to be produced at Jefferson North.
Note: CY indicates "calendar year," the year in which SOP (start of production) for each vehicle is scheduled according to the May 6, 2014, FCA Product Plan.