In and un­der da hood

Herald Sun - Motoring - - News - PAUL GOVER CHIEF RE­PORTER

THE gangsta car from Detroit is headed for a com­plete turf takeover in Aus­tralia.

Post Com­modore and Fal­con, any­one rusted on to the idea of a fam­ily five-seater with petrol six and rear-wheel drive will be look­ing earnestly at the Chrysler 300.

The suc­cess of the 300 is an ironic de­vel­op­ment, with Amer­i­can metal — which sup­plied the orig­i­nal build­ing blocks for the ’60s Ford and Holden and Valiant hero cars — re­turn­ing to its orig­i­nal spot in the show­room peck­ing or­der.

The chunky Amer­i­can com­bines qual­ity, de­cent styling and a rea­son­able price. It’s not nearly a match for the VF Com­modore, but it trumps the Ford Fal­con - at least un­til its fi­nal makeover in Oc­to­ber.

You can also get it with a diesel en­gine and a go-fast SRT8 pack­age that in­cludes a 6.4-litre V8, for com­fort­ably less than an equiv­a­lent Com­modore con­tender from Holden Spe­cial Ve­hi­cles.

The 300 set a new sales record last year with 2508, the best re­sult since 1864 de­liv­er­ies in 2006 with the first­gen­er­a­tion car.

There were ex­tra vari­ants, in­cud­ing a wagon. But, the cur­rent car was ef­fec­tively out of stock for more than a year while the fac­tory in the US built left-hand-drive cars.

Even in limou­sine and taxi liv­ery, the 300 is win­ning fans in Aus­tralia.

Un­like the Com­modore and Fal­con, it will be around be­yond 2016.

Mus­cle up: The SRT8 and, be­low, 300C Lim­ited

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