IOL Motoring Staff
Detroit Motor Show - The good news first: Chrysler has shaken off the ghosts of Sebrings past with its all-new 200, which comes to the mid-sized sedan party with an elegant design that bears practically no resemblance to its predecessors.
In fact, it doesn't even resemble its macho 300C big brother, the latter's staunch lines giving way to softer curves that wouldn't look out of place on a British sports car.
The bad news, though, is that the Chrysler 200 is not coming to South Africa, because they're not building them in right-hand drive format.
Nonetheless, the Chrysler 200 remains an important product for Chrysler in North America, and its newfound style is backed up by some technological prowess in the form of a segment-first nine-speed automatic gearbox and available all-wheel drive.
Two engines are on the menu, namely a 2.4-litre MultiAir (Fiat technology) four-cylinder motor credited with 137kW and 234Nm and a 3.6-litre Pentastar V6 that's good for 220kW and 355Nm.
The 200 is based on the 'Compact US Wide' architecture which has its origins in the Alfa Romeo Giulietta - although they've clearly taken advantage of the platform's modular nature to make the 200 somewhat larger.
There is plenty of Alfa sophistication beneath the skin, then, including a twist-blade multi-link independent rear axle among many other nut-and-bolt highlights.
How times have changed…