We Drive: Chrysler’s manic 300C SRT8

Published Aug 10, 2012


According to American carmaker Chrysler, the 300 back in the 1950s was the world's first muscle-car, running an impressive 230km/h at Daytona Beach with Hemi power.

Fast forward to the launch in South Africa of the latest 300C and not too much has changed on the performance front, especially when you throw in the SRT8 nomenclature.

Buyers get to choose between three models - the 210kW/340Nm, 3.6-litre V6 petrol, the 176kW/550Nm, three-litre V6 turbodiesel, and the big-daddy 6.4-litre V8 SRT8 - the same lump as in the Jeep SRT8 - pushes 347kW and 631Nm.

We got to taste the SRT8 at the launch in Knysna and it certainly is special.

That Hemi, especially at sea level, is very wide awake. The gearing is also a bit of an enigma - I wondered why this flagship didn't get the eight-speed 'box but with second gear getting you to 130km/h it's clear the legs here are long.

Performance is wicked; the long gearing means the car runs like a steam train with no sign of running out of breath while the traction control is happy to let you explore your reaction times.

The only negative is the suspension.

Even in Sport mode it’s a little soft and bouncy through the corners.

The Performance Pages, which are various customisable screens in the display that tell you everything from sprint times, to G-Force, to braking distances, to steering angles, to power and torque outputs, are very cool too. They even showed transmission and intake air temperatures!


And if all this is still not enough for you, Chrysler SA has introduced Mopar performance accessories - front and rear strut braces, air filters, the list goes on.

And then there's the price. Which really is exceptional considering the power and spec level we're talking about. The manic STR8 will set you back R629 990 - which is incredible bang-for-buck.

In fact, Chrysler reckons the SRT8 offers the best performance package in South Africa for under a million. - Star Motoring

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