Chrysler Douses Water On Hellcat 300 Rumors
Move along, folks. Nothing to see here.by Kirby, on
It seemed too good to be true when we first heard about it. A Chrysler 300 packing Hellcat power? But Automotive News reported as much, saying that Fiat Chrysler Automobiles was working on launching a Chrysler 300 that will use a supercharged Hemi Hellcat V-8 engine under its hood. The mere thought of it was perplexing, but stranger things have happened within FCA, so the thought of a Hellcat-powered 300 sedan, as improbable as it was, didn’t seem too far-fetched for FCA. Well, consider the bubble burst because a spokesman from FCA has spoken, needle in hand. There won’t be a 707-horsepower Chrysler 300 Hellcat.
Word comes from Motor Authority, which learned that there no plans for a supercharged Hemi Hellcat-powered 300 sedan. All those who thought that it would be an ideal send-off for the aging 300 will have to settle for something else because it just isn’t happening. On the one hand, it is disappointing here because a 707-horsepower Chrysler 300 is the exactly the kind of variant that would give the current-generation 300 a newsworthy send-off. The appeal is definitely there and the 300 has, at least in the past, housed a V-8 rig under its hood. On the other hand, it’s also a sigh of relief that Chrysler isn’t going in this direction. It can’t just rely on the Hellcat engine as a lifeline of sorts to jolt interest back in a model that’s clearly on its way out. FCA is better than that and to its credit, the automaker seems to understand that rationale too.
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The temptation is there, but it wouldn’t have mattered
For the record, I’m not opposed to a Chrysler 300 getting the full-on Hellcat treatment. There’s even a part of me that was really curious to see who that would’ve turned out. It’s not often that a company has an engine like the Hellcat that it can use on a variety of models and instantly turn that model into a force to be reckoned with. Heck, FCA did it on the Jeep Grand Cherokee and it worked!
The thought of a Hellcat-powered 300 sedan, as improbable as it was, didn’t seem too far-fetched for FCA
My issue with the Chrysler 300 getting a Hellcat engine is the timing behind it. I would’ve been more excited if the Hellcat was being considered for the next-generation model of the 300 or at least an updated version, but not the existing one. Doing it now would’ve been a waste as the 300 is on track for a big update next year, so if Chrysler really wants to make a statement, it would’ve considered the Hellcat engine on that model. Doing that would’ve at least generated some buzz for the sedan, something that it desperately needs as it continues to age past the point of being too dated.
I know some people are against the thought of a Hellcat engine on a 300 for other reasons, not the least of which is related to the sedan’s image. It’s become clear that the automaker wants the 300 to be defined most for its luxury capabilities and amenities. That’s a big reason why it has focused its attention on Dodge and Jeep models as far as which ones will get the Hellcat engine, leaving Chrysler to turn the 300 into a full-fledged luxury vehicle that has a better chance of competing against its rivals in the segment. A 707-horsepower 300 would’ve sent a message, that’s for sure. I’m just not sure if it’s the right message.
FCA might actually do something when the next-gen 300 arrives, whenever that’s going to be
Who knows, FCA might actually do something when the next-gen 300 arrives, whenever that’s going to be. But for now, it just doesn’t make sense for the current model to get such a major engine overhaul this late in its life. It would’ve turned into a waste of a statement, so it’s good that FCA shot down this rumor as quickly as it did.
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Source: Motor Authority