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Chrysler 300 Luxury Series Unveiled

2012 Chrysler 300 Luxury Series

We classify the Chrysler 300 as an affordable large car, but the 300’s new-for-2012 Luxury Series gives this large sedan a price tag and features list befitting luxury large cars.

“The all-new Chrysler 300 and 300C Luxury Series are the most highly appointed sedans the brand has ever offered,” Chrysler says in a press release.

The Chrysler 300 Luxury Series sedan starts at about $12,000 more than the base 300. Rear-wheel drive 300 Luxury Series models start at $40,145, and can reach $45,245 for 300C Luxury Series models with all-wheel drive. Standard on Luxury Series models are a leather dashboard, center console and door panels. The front seats have leather upholstery, and are 12-way power-adjustable, which includes four-way power lumbar support. The cabin also has wood trim and paddle shifters for the leather-wrapped steering wheel.

There’s also a lot of interior tech. Each Luxury Series model has an 8.4-inch touch-screen infotainment system that Chrysler calls Uconnect, navigation, satellite radio, heated and cooled front seats, heated rear seats, power tilt and telescoping steering wheel and power-adjustable pedals. Both the steering wheel and pedals have memory settings that automatically readjust to your driving position.

Both 300 and 300C Luxury Series models have optional all-wheel drive, which increases the price of rear-wheel drive models by $2,350, but models with this feature don’t come with more interior amenities. All-wheel drive models do, however, have 19-inch wheels, while rear-wheel drive models have 20-inch wheels.

The main difference between the Luxury Series 300 and 300C trims is the powertrain. Underneath the hood, the 300 Luxury Series sports an eight-speed automatic transmission, which is paired with a 292-horsepower 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 engine. That’s the same engine available on the base Chrysler 300. The 300C Luxury Series has a 5.7-liter HEMI V8 engine that makes 363 horsepower and a five-speed automatic transmission with manual mode. This is also the same engine in the non-Luxury Series 300C model.

While shoppers can get either the V6 or V8 engine on lower trims of the 300, the base Chrysler 300 doesn’t have nearly as many standard interior amenities. Like the Luxury Series, the base model has a standard 8.4-inch touch-screen infotainment system, satellite radio and 12-way power-adjustable seats, but navigation, leather seating and heated and cooled front seats and heated rear seats are optional.

Autoblog says Chrysler developed the Luxury Series to compete with “the level of refinement and equipment offered by their imported competitors.” With premium-label updates, Autoblog thinks Chrysler may have a contender on its hands. The “300 Luxury Series could just make luxury import buyers swing by their local Chrysler dealership for a closer look.”

Shopping for a Chrysler 300 or a different affordable large car? Check out the U.S. News rankings of this year's best cars. Then, look for a great deal on a new car by checking out this month’s best car deals. You can also skip negotiating with a dealer by using our Best Price Program. Also, be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

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