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#7

in Affordable Midsize Cars

MSRP: $21,700 - $30,195
Invoice: $21,605 - $29,072
MPG: 23 City / 36 Hwy
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Chrysler 200 Performance

Reviewers say the 2015 Chrysler 200’s base four-cylinder engine has enough power to pass on the highway, but they prefer the potent available V6. Many test drivers think the 200 is rather agile for a midsize car, though a few say it isn’t as nimble as some rivals.

  • "The driving fun available behind the wheel of the 2015 Chrysler 200 should surprise the skeptics. Much like the new Jeep Cherokee, the 200 handles far better than paper specs and past experience would lead one to expect." -- AutoWeek
  • "Overall, we'd call the 200 athletic, but we're not quite sure it's ready for the ‘sports sedan’ tag." -- Left Lane News
  • "We just weren't expecting how much fun the 200 is to drive. The combination of the car's sporty reflexes, strong V6, available all-wheel drive and 9-speed transmission gives the 200 a powerful but light-on-its-feet feel from behind the wheel." -- AutoTrader

Acceleration and Power

The 2015 Chrysler 200 comes standard with a 184-horsepower, 2.4-liter, four-cylinder engine and a nine-speed automatic transmission. A 295-horsepower, 3.6-liter V6 engine is optional. According to the EPA, the four-cylinder 200 gets 23/36 mpg city/highway, which is on par for the class, while the V6 model gets 19/32 mpg, which is slightly less than the fuel economy estimates of rival V6-powered cars.

Most test drivers write that the Chrysler 200’s four-cylinder engine provides adequate power for highway passing. However, a few critics wish it was more potent, and several mention that it is louder than rival four-cylinder engines when accelerating quickly. Most reviewers prefer the available V6 for its strong acceleration, and some like its roaring exhaust note. Automotive journalists report that the 200’s nine-speed automatic shifts smoothly, but is sometimes slow to downshift during harder acceleration and has difficulty finding the right gear at times.

  • "This isn't the quietest or smoothest engine in this class, but most buyers will find that the 2.4-liter meets their acceleration needs in normal driving, as highway merging and passing maneuvers come easily. Still, the V6 is the more desirable choice. It has plenty of power in any situation and never feels sluggish, even when engine speed drops below 2,000 rpm in 9th gear. It's also commendably quiet for normal highway cruising, yet has a snarly exhaust note when you really get on the gas." -- Edmunds
  • "The 2.4 isn't as refined as the best 4-cylinders in this class - mostly due to a rather raucous full-throttle moan - but it cruises quietly and is competitive in power. By contrast, the V6 is much smoother, and when pressed, pulls with authority and emits a decidedly sporty growl." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The 2.4-liter engine's 184 hp isn't quite up to snuff when it comes to moving the 200, and the 9-speed automatic clearly favors fuel economy over rapid acceleration. We much prefer the 295-hp supplied by the optional 3.6-liter V6, which can also be paired with an optional AWD system borrowed from the Jeep Cherokee." -- AutoTrader
  • "The nine-speed automatic shifts smoothly through the gears, but downshifts aren't handled as well. Due to the sheer volume of the gears on tap, we found that a quick stab of the gas pedal could result in the transmission ‘hunting’ through two or even three gears before finding the right one." -- Left Lane News

Handling and Braking

Critics report that the redesigned Chrysler 200 is fairly athletic for an affordable midsize car, though some say it’s not quite as nimble as more dynamic competitors like the Honda Accord and Mazda6. A few reviewers note that the 2015 Chrysler 200’s steering is a bit numb, but they write that it’s precise and sporty for a midsize car, especially in comparison with rivals like the Toyota Camry. In addition, the 200 earns praise for its strong, confidence-inspiring brakes and compliant ride.

  • "As it is with most cars in this class, our choice here is the four-cylinder. With the weight off its nose, the 200 feels much more tossable and balanced, even a little bit fun. But, in a class that includes the lot-of-fun Accord and Mazda 6, a little isn't going to cut it." -- Car and Driver
  • "The exhaust pops as we ease off the 295-hp V-6 and onto the brakes, which feel strong and easy to modulate." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "Steering is quick and direct, but the 200's tiller is a bit on the numb side, particularity on-center. The 200 suspension doesn't mind being tossed through the corners, but it's best suited to soaking up road imperfections." -- Left Lane News
  • "On the exquisite, twisting ribbons of California's Highway 1 north of San Francisco the new Chrysler leapt around turns with only minor body roll, and the tires maintained their composure well into the margins of sane driving regardless of whether it was a front-drive I-4 or AWD V6 getting flogged. It's no Lotus, but for drivers accustomed to the flaccid steering of a Camry the new 200 will feel like a sports sedan." -- AutoWeek
  • "For 2015, the 200 has adopted a slightly enlarged version of the platform architecture already used for the Dodge Dart and Jeep Cherokee. It's a more structurally rigid foundation than before and it contributes to a quieter, more refined ride quality. Handling is also impressive for a car in this class." -- Edmunds
Review Last Updated: 6/17/14

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