Crossfire's great looks are ruined by crass spoiler, supercharged engine adds pace but dynamics remain flawed.

People usually like the Chrysler Crossfire because of its looks. They’re utterly distinguishing, and give the impression of a car driven straight off the designer’s drawing board. So it’s a shame that Chrysler couldn’t leave them alone when it created what should be the ultimate Crossfire - the SRT-6. Instead, it has grafted on a cheap-looking chin extension and an awkward rear spoiler, crass additions that seem totally misplaced.

The supercharged V6 is fundamentally the same engine that appeared in Mercedes’ old SLK32 AMG. Its 330bhp and 310lb ft are up 115bhp and 81lb ft on the standard car’s, and enough for 0-60mph in an urgent 5.3sec with only a snatch of wheelspin, and on to 155mph.

Forced induction adds more willingness to the upper reaches of the already torquey V6’s rev range, and adds an occasional whoosh which is all the more enjoyable in the Roadster.

If only it wasn’t so tricky to steer. The lighter alloy wheels (18in at the front, 19in at the rear), uprated suspension and extra power are welcome, but they’re undermined by the imprecise recirculating ball helm. It’s simply too limp and uncommunicative for a real driver’s car.

That’s what Chrysler would have you believe the SRT-6 is, and that’s why it feels the £35,335 price is justified. In both respects, we feel a reality check is in order.

Matt Saunders

Matt Saunders Autocar
Title: Road test editor

As Autocar’s chief car tester and reviewer, it’s Matt’s job to ensure the quality, objectivity, relevance and rigour of the entirety of Autocar’s reviews output, as well contributing a great many detailed road tests, group tests and drive reviews himself.

Matt has been an Autocar staffer since the autumn of 2003, and has been lucky enough to work alongside some of the magazine’s best-known writers and contributors over that time. He served as staff writer, features editor, assistant editor and digital editor, before joining the road test desk in 2011.

Since then he’s driven, measured, lap-timed, figured, and reported on cars as varied as the Bugatti Veyron, Rolls-Royce PhantomTesla RoadsterAriel Hipercar, Tata Nano, McLaren SennaRenault Twizy and Toyota Mirai. Among his wider personal highlights of the job have been covering Sebastien Loeb’s record-breaking run at Pikes Peak in 2013; doing 190mph on derestricted German autobahn in a Brabus Rocket; and driving McLaren’s legendary ‘XP5’ F1 prototype. His own car is a trusty Mazda CX-5.

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