Bangs for your buck in US parlance translates into a whole lot of power for not a whole lot of cash. With its new 300C SRT-8, Chrysler has set a lofty benchmark for bangs and bucks. Take a look at what’s on offer: 6.1-litre Hemi V8, 425bhp, 0-60mph in under five seconds and a price tag in the US of just $39,995 – that’s £21,000 here.
Coupled to a smooth-changing, super-intuitive five-speed automatic gearbox, the big Hemi delivers the kind of thundering performance normally reserved for AMG Benzes. While Chrysler talks of 60mph in the ‘low fives’, one US magazine has already clocked a 4.9sec run and 0-100mph in 11.7sec. And the soundtrack alone is worth the purchase price.
The noise from up front is deep, rich and bellowing, all the way up to its higher 6400rpm red line (up from 5800rpm).
Point that bluff bow down a curvy road and the 300 shows agility that belies its considerable bulk. With stiffer and lower (by 13mm) suspension and wrist-thick anti-roll bars, the SRT corners with plenty of front-end bite and minimal body roll.
Hit the brakes and the Chrysler’s ability to shed speed is impressive. Pizza-sized discs – 360mm up front, 350mm at the rear – are clamped by giant four-pot calipers. Not even a series of full-on stops caused the slightest hint of fade.