Image credits: © Chrysler.

2012 Chrysler 300C Executive Series news, pictures, specifications, and information

All-new 2012 Chrysler 300C Executive Series

Designed to be the most luxurious Chrysler flagship sedan ever, the all-new Chrysler 300C Executive Series combines ultra-premium leather – once limited to some of the most exotic Italian luxury cars – wîth world-class refinement and handling, state-of-the-art safety and connectivity features and the legendary 363 horsepower 5.7-liter HEMI® V-8 engine wîth Fuel Saver Technology.

'For us, it's not only about making the all-new Chrysler 300C great for a §egmènt, it's about tailoring it for an individual . . . the businessman . . . the outperformer . . . the trendsetter,' added Francois. 'The 2012 Chrysler 300C Executive Series makes a statement wîth all of its appointments and contrasts. With hand-sanded real wood accents, hand-stitched Italian leather dash, two-tone ultra-soft Nappa leather seats, uniquely polished 20-inch wheels and state-of-the-art Úconnect Touch – our flagship provides passengers wîth the sense of pure old-school craftsmanship combined wîth innovative technology.'

Exclusive features found on the Chrysler 300C Executive Series interior include either Mochachino or Black Poltrona Frau 'Foligno' leather-wrapped instrument panel, cluster brow, center console side panels and upper front- and rear-door panels. Premium Nappa leather covers the door armrest, bolster and center console armrest. Two-tone Mochachino or Black seats are wrapped exclusively in supple Nappa leather and include 12-way power-adjustable driver and front-passenger seats (including four-way power lumbar) wîth two-mode ventilation and two-mode heated seats for both front and rear passengers. Specially selected Natural Pore Mocha or Pore Gray real wood trim is finished in a low-gloss to enhance the beauty of the wood.

On the exterior, the Chrysler luxury flagship replaces chromed fascia, mirror and door handle accents wîth a unique platinum chrome finish for an even more upscale look. Topping off the unique exterior is a platinum-chrome finished grille surround wîth platinum-chrome sculpted grille blades for a truly distinctive appearance (late availability).

Premium interior amenities within the Chrysler 300C Executive Series model include the state-of-the-art Úconnect Touch 8.4N wîth Garmin® navigation, SIRIÚS Traffic and SIRIÚS Travel Link, 160-mph LED-illuminated instrument cluster wîth driver-selectable color EVIC, heated and leather-wrapped §teering wheel, power tilt and telescoping §teering column wîth memory, power-adjustable pedals wîth memory, power backlight sunshade, premium 18-ounce berber floor mats wîth nubuck trim, satin chrome lower door sills wîth 'Chrysler' logo, dual heated/cooled cup holders, ambient lit foot well lighting, LED illuminated interior door handles and front and rear map pockets, premium carpeted trunk mat, HomeLink universal transceiver and power-folding chromed exterior mirrors wîth memory, auto-dimming and auto-tilt in Reverse.

Available in rear-wheel drive or wîth the §egmènt's most advance AWD system, the 2012 Chrysler 300C Executive Series models arrive at Chrysler dealerships in the fall of 2011.

Chrysler Brand Expands 300 Lineup With New 2012 Models Designed For Different Lifestyles


• All-new Chrysler 300 SRT8® wîth its 6.4-liter HEMI® V-8 offers ultimate combination of world-class luxury and performance in Chrysler's most powerful, best-handling sedan ever

• All-new Chrysler 300S Series brings a youthful and aggressive appearance wîth athletic style and sophistication

• With premium materials and world-class refinement, the all-new 300C Executive Series is the most luxurious Chrysler sedan ever

• Three all-new models bring uniquely distinct personalities to the Chrysler flagship sedan's 2012 model lineup

• Available in Chrysler showrooms in third quarter 2011


The success of the modern Chrysler 300 launched in 2005 can be attributed to its broad appeal. People of all ages, incomes, and lifestyles were attracted to the sedan's dramatic styling, power and performance. The 2011 model year brought the introduction of the all-new Chrysler 300, 300 Limited and 300C. For 2012, the Chrysler brand is expanding the appeal of its flagship 300 sedan even further by launching three all-new models, all wîth unmistakably bold American style, luxury and performance targeted at different owner lifestyles.

As the king of the lineup, the 2012 Chrysler 300 SRT8® adds high-performance hardware to the elegant proportions and head turning design of the 2011 Chrysler 300C to provide the ultimate combination of world-class luxury, power and handling. With an estimated 465 horsepower and 465 lb.-ft. of torque, the 300 SRT8 is targeted at customers that seek heart pounding, adrenaline filled excitement, but don't want to sacrifice comfort and innovative features to get it.

Appealing to younger, more urban-centric customers that want world-class sophistication combined wîth athletic-luxury and a more aggressive look, the all-new 2012 Chrysler 300S delivers. This 300 'street machine' features 20-inch aluminum wheels wîth black painted pockets, sport-tuned suspension, premium audio, black exterior accents and a monotone black or exclusive black wîth Radar Red interior environment.

Designed to be the most luxurious Chrysler sedan ever, the all-new 2012 Chrysler 300C Executive Series wîth an ultra-premium leather wrapped cockpit, will appeal to customers lòòking to reward their hard work wîth a true American luxury vehicle that rivals the best the imports can offer.

'We're bringing three new and distinct models to our 300 lineup in 2012 wîth the 300 SRT8, 300S Series and 300C Executive Series, each designed wîth specific consumer lifestyles in mind,' said Olivier Francois, President and CEO — Chrysler Brand and Lead Executive for Marketing, Chrysler Group LLC. 'More than an icon of simple American motoring, the Chrysler 300 is an icon of attainable style and performance. For those customers who live for the sport of being first, the all-new Chrysler 300 SRT8 is the no compromises king of the hill, featuring the ultimate combination of world-class luxury and performance in our most powerful, best-handling sedan ever.'

Source - Chrysler
In 1955, Chrysler introduced the C300. The 'C' stood for coupe and the 300 was the horsepower rating of the original Hemi engine equipped with , two four barrel carbs, solid lifters, special manifolds, and enlarged dual exhausts. This vehicle gave the Chrysler Corporation a performance and sporty image, a much needed persona in this post World War II era. Many European manufacturers, such as Jaguar and MG, had introduced high powered, small, responsive sports cars. American manufacturers countered with the Chevrolet Corvette and the Ford Thunderbird. The Chrysler 300 was a performance car with a contemporary 'Forward Look' designed by ex-Studebaker stylist Virgil Exner. The design was void of the popular chrome sides which was prevalent during this era. It was simple but aggressive gentleman's car.

The Chrysler 300 was outfitted with a hemispherical (Hemi) combustion chamber 5.4 litre V-8 that produced 300 horsepower and matted to a performance modified two-speed 'PowerFlite' automatic gearbox. The body came from the New Yorker; rear quarter moldings were compliments of the Windsor. The two piece grille came from the Imperial. An improved suspension was implemented to provided sporty and responsive handling. The base price was $4,055.

Sales of the C300 were fueled by its success on the stock car circuit. The C300 dominated the sands of Daytona Beach, Florida where it won the stock production class and took home the Tom McCahill trophy. From 1955 through 1957 it was the fastest American car.

In 1959, a 300D driven at Utah's Bonneville Salt Flats by Norm Thatcher set a new Class E speed record of 156.387 mph. During the same year, Brewster Shaw achieved a quarter-mile time of 16 seconds with a trap speed of 94 mph at Daytona Beach, Florida.

For 1956, Chrysler increased the displacement of its Hemi engine to 5.8 liters and changed the name to 300B. With 355 horsepower, the V8 engine had one horsepower per cubic inch, an achievement that very few manufacturers were able to claim.

The letters continued to climb the alphabet annually until the 300L of 1965 (the letter I was skipped). They became known as the 'letter cars'. In 1959, the 392 hemi was replaced with the 413 cubic-inch Golden Lion wedge-head design engine. In 1962, the 300 Sport series became available along side the 300H. The 300, without a letter designation was continued until 1971. In 1970, the 300 Hurst was produced, built by Chrysler and modified by the Hurst Company. The modifications included two-tone paint, special striping, spoiler on the deck lid, and wheels. The 300 name was again revived in 1979 as the 300 Special Edition, but endured a short life span. It was based on the Cordoba platform and available only in white with red leather interior.

Even with eleven years of production, less than 17,000 were produced. The bodystyle's available were either a two door hardtop or convertible. The convertible was not available during 1955, 1956, and 1963.

In the early 2000's, Chrysler revived the model name with the 300M. For most 300 enthusiasts, it is a good attempt, but far from the original 300's. The original 300's, as argued by some MOPAR enthusiast, is considered to be the first muscle cars. Although they were fast, they were also large and luxurious, qualities that muscle cars did not typically process. The 300 did get American moving on the fast track to the horsepower and performance revolution, and looked good while doing it.

By Daniel Vaughan | Jul 2009
In 2005, the wave of retro design that is still shaping American cars first washed over Detroit. American companies, with their stale product offerings, began looking towards their rich pasts to inspire new models with the design and flair of long-gone icons. It was in 2005 that Chrysler launched a modern iteration of the famed 300.

The 300 name had actually been revived by Chrysler several years before the 2005 300's introduction as a car called the 300M, but that model was dated even when brand new and didn't evoke nostalgic memories in the same way its replacement would. The 2005 300 was a total departure from the Chrysler models immediately preceding it. The sleek, low slung, 'cab-forward' design language of the 300M and others was replaced by the new 300's brash and blocky look. The 2005 Chrysler 300 was not merely an updated version of a bygone classic, but rather a revival of Chrysler's attitude during the company's most exciting times.

The new 300 went back to a rear wheel drive platform and reintroduced the muscular proportions of America's former bad-boy sedans. Available V8 power rounded out the package and a large, upright chrome grille stood proud in grand American fashion. The 2005 Chrysler 300 was met with great fanfare and positive press. For as exciting a car as the '05 300 was, though, it could barely capture the style and spirit of the car that inspired it. The original 300 was one of the most thrilling Chryslers ever released. It was a car whose inspirational design and performance will be lauded forever and whose legend will continue to be respected by Chrysler workers, owners and admirers, as well as by the flashy new car that shares its name.

Produced without interruption from 1955 through 1971, the Chrysler 300 in its earliest form was one of the very first muscle cars. Though production extended into the early 1970's, the best-known (and best-loved) 300s were the 'letter series' cars of 1955-1965. All 300s were part of this letter series until 1962, when both letter and non-letter variants were offered through 1965. Models made from 1966 on were not part of the letter series. Each Chrysler in the letter series used the 300 designation followed by a single letter. That letter ascended alphabetically once every year, making it up to 'L.' Confusingly, the first of the series was not called the 300A but the C-300. In that one instance, the letter 'C' simply stood for coupe. Revisions on the C-300 theme created the 300B for 1956, then 300C for 1957, 300D for 1958, and so on. The only other snag in the letter series system was the use of the letter 'J' for the 1963 300, instead of the 'I' for which the car was due. Chrysler likely used the 'J' nomenclature to prevent confusion between the letter 'I' and the Roman numeral I.

The letter series 300 introduced potent performance and a fresh design to Chrysler, whose other models had grown stale. In that sense, the original 300 arrived for the same reasons as 2005's remake. The name was chosen for bragging rights. Chrysler, with its aptly named C-300, had become the first American manufacturer to develop 300hp in a production car. That power led the 1955 Chrysler to become the fastest production car in the world, reaching 127.58mph at Daytona Beach. The C-300's engine was a 331ci Chrysler V8 with hemispherical combustion chambers and two 4-barrel carburetors. The aforementioned 300hp was achieved at 5,200rpm.

There was much more to the C-300 than formidable speed. The car was large, luxurious, and packed with comfortable features. At 220 inches in length, the C-300 was huge for a two-door. A weight of 4,300lbs gave it the bulk of a personal limousine. Its two speed automatic transmission required no effort on the driver's part. The car was rolling evidence that speed and luxury were not mutually exclusive traits. The C-300 was the fastest car on the road, and it may very well have been the most comfortable.

A superb combination of performance and comfort alone would have made the Chrysler C-300 a classic. But the car's quality didn't stop there. Designed by the talented and innovative Virgil Exner, the C-300 was a triple threat of sumptuous luxury, speed and, and style.

Before moving to Chrysler, Exner had worked for GM under the guidance of Harley Earl and for Raymond Loewy's own design firm. His experience led him to be a daring designer, but the 1955 C-300 was a subdued design. It was handsome and understated, free of the garish detailing the plagued so many of its contemporaries. With its regal proportions and proud stance, the C-300 separated itself from lowlier cars that used glitz and glam as their only stylistic values. A split egg crate grille, in chrome, dominated the frontal aspect of the C-300 and had a tastefully minimal chrome bumper running beneath it. The subtle fins picked up just aft of the doors and beneath the beltline. At the rear, the vestigial fins flowed into vertical taillights. With a base price above $4,000, buyers paid dearly for a fine congregation of elegant design, comfort, and rapidity.

Even more power was made available for the 1956 300B. A 354ci V8, at first making 340hp, was available with 355hp by the middle of its run—making it the first American engine to produce 1 horsepower per cubic inch. Three transmissions were offered: PowerFlite and TorqueFlite two-speed autos, and a three-speed manual.

Performance improvements in the 1956 300B were complemented by the availability of an even more comfortable interior. Air conditioning was offered as well as a clock in the steering wheel for the particularly punctual. And, of course, if the clock wasn't distracting enough, a record player could also be ordered.


The styling of the 300B featured a revised rear treatment, but the car was largely the same as 1955's C-300. For the 1957 300C, though, Exner thoroughly revamped the 300's shape. The new design was more brash but still tasteful and clean. It featured more pronounced fins and a quad headlight face with a large, one-piece egg crate grille. From the side, the 300C looked particularly good. Its long and low proportions were readily revealed from that angle. Also easily noticeable from the side, the 300C had a forward tilt to its front end that was mirrored by a rearward tilt to its fins. The balanced look was an Exner hallmark that worked wonderfully on the 300C. A convertible version was offered whose absence of a roofline emphasized the trapezoidal side profile of the 300C's body. A top speed of 150mph could be reached by the 300C.

For 1958, a 300D was introduced. It looked very similar to the 300C, but big improvements were still made. Fuel injection became an available option and power brakes were standard. With 380hp, the 300D could be propelled to 156mph. The 300E of 1959 offered similar styling but with a very different engine. The hemi-head V8 was replaced by a 413ci wedge-head V8.

The 300F brought major styling changes for 1960. While other companies toned down their use of fins for the 1960's, Chrysler gave its 300F a wild, one-year-only rear treatment with razor sharp fins. Ralph Nader, in his book Unsafe at and Speed that most famously criticized the Chevrolet Corvair's poor handling, called the 300F's fins 'potentially lethal.' Automotive writer Quentin Willson offered good reason for Nader's concern in his own work titled The Ultimate Classic Car Book, pointing to a 1963 traffic accident in which an unfortunate motorcyclist became impaled by one of the fins of a 300F.

With a front end that looked slightly awkward compared to the noses of its predecessors and a heavily criticized faux spare tire cover incorporated into the rear deck lid, the 300F's overall look lacked the thoroughly clean appearance of earlier models. But from the side at least the 300F still looked good, and performance and comfort were as impressive as ever. Up to 400hp could be had from the 413ci engine. A beautifully finished interior continued a tradition of comfortable motoring. The interior was so inviting that the seats literally offered themselves to driver and front passenger, automatically swiveling to allow easy access whenever a door was opened.

The 300G was brought out for 1961 and was the last finned 300. The front end retained four headlights, but they were now stacked two per side in tilted columns. Standard power windows and cruise control further enhanced an already excellent list of convenience features, and performance options remained similar to those of the 300F. The 300H used the following year was similar in most respects to the 300G, but had a fresh tail design with a smooth, tapering deck where once stood fins. Production of the 300H was unusually low even for the exclusive letter series, but sales were bolstered by the introduction of a more affordable non-letter series variant, named simply the '300.'

For 1963, the letter 'I' was skipped and the 300J was introduced alongside a revamped standard 300. The 1963 models were plainer, with square styling that belied their still capable performance. The 1964 300K and 1965 300L were the last two models of the letter series. By 1965, the plain styling of the 300L and the narrow performance gap between it and the base 300 had created an uninspired package. After 1965, the letter series was discontinued.

The garden variety 300 soldiered on until 1971, losing sales and substance as it went along. Chrysler couldn't have picked a better time to pull the plug on the aging model, as allowing it to last any longer would have exposed it to stringent emissions regulations that instantly would have robbed the car of the only virtue it really had left—power. Even the very last 300 had a 440ci V8 that had a tremendous output compared to any American offering of the mid-1970's.

History has ignored any shortcomings of the largely average 300 produced from 1966-1971, focusing on the raw power and suave personality of the early letter series. Few American cars before or since have been able to offer so much speed and luxury wrapped in a shell of aesthetic excellence. From 1955 through 1959, the 300s were the uncompromised rulers of the American automotive kingdom—even the 1960-1965 models were superbly executed. Inspiring the successful 2005 Chrysler 300, the early letter series cars have shown that sometimes history is worth repeating.

Sources:

'History of the Chrysler Three Hundred Series.' The Chrysler 300 Site Web.28 Jul 2009. http://www.chrysler300site.com/cgibin/history.cgi.

Nerad, Jack. 'Great Classic Cars: Chrysler C-300.' AntiqueCar.com Web.28 Jul 2009. http://www.antiquecar.com/gc_chrysler_c300.php.

Willson, Quentin. The Ultimate Classic Car Book. First. New York: Dorling Kindersley, 1995. Print.

By Evan Acuña
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