Fleet News

Chrysler Touring 300C

Review

IT has looks which turn heads wherever it goes – but there’s a more practical reason why the latest version of Chrysler’s most successful car could soon be making a name for itself in British executive motoring.

The 300C Touring has a massive 630 litres of load spacebehind its soft leather-trimmed rear seats. And with the backrests folded down, cargo capacity goes up to a 1,602 litres. By comparison, Audi’s A6 Avant offers 565/1,660 litres, the Mercedes-Benz E-class estate 650/1,910 and Saab’s 9-5 estate 416/1,490.

Chrysler Group UK marketing director Steve Gray regards all this extra space as a bonus in his battle to make further inroads in the fleet market.

He said: ‘We have something that’s very different compared with the usual executive car – the Touring represents a good opportunity to bolster the success we’re achieving with the saloon.’

Speaking at the launch of the Touring in Scotland, Gray told Fleet NewsNet that the boldly-styled American saloon was winning a ‘storming’ reception from UK motorists following its introduction seven months ago.

He added: ‘We have almost doubled our original forecast for 1,500 registrations this year. This car might sell first on its styling, but packaging, performance and pricing will prove to be significant factors.’

Priced 10% cheaper than a Saab 9-5 1.9 TID Vector Sport Estate, the entry-level Touring uses a 3.0-litre Mercedes-Benz diesel engine with a five-speed automatic transmission. Standard specification is extensive.

Verdict

Verdict

DESPITE being cheaper than its rivals, the big Chrysler is packaged to be better than most when it comes to heavy-load, long-haul work. Fuel economy might be a comparative weakness, but the price is right and the styling is fantastic.

Behind the wheel

AN old-fashioned, large-diameter steering wheel tends to emphasise the bulk of the Chrysler at first sight, but the impression is soon lost out on the road.

For its size, the car has better performance than you’d expect from a relatively modest power unit – surprisingly, it’s quicker away from a standstill than the 3.5-litre V6 petrol version – and the diesel is the optimal fleet choice for its fuel economy.

Though the rules of physics prevent it from being sprightly through the bends, the Touring proves to be competent on cross-country roads. But this is relaxed transport for motorway use, and its space, high comfort and low noise levels make it ideal as a fast lane cruiser.

Model: 3.0 V6 CRD 3.5 V6 5.7 V8
Max power (bhp/rpm): 218/4,000 249/6,400 340/5,200
Max torque (lb-ft/rpm): 376/2,800 250/4,000 387/4,000
Max speed (mph): 136 130 155
0-62mph (secs): 8.6 9.5 7.0
Fuel consumption (mpg): 34.9 25.2 22.6
CO2 emissions (g/km): 215 265 296
On sale: Now
Prices (OTR): £27,295-£34,290

  • To view images click on next page.

  • CO2 emissions and fuel consumption data correct at time of writing. The latest figures are available in the Fleet News fuel cost calculator and the company car tax calculator.

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