Auto reviews in the New York Times can sometimes generate their own news stories, so I’ve started paying closer attention to the road-going scribes at that lofty publication.
(For evidence of my claim, please see Exhibit A: http://jalopnik.com/this-brutal-nyt-mirage-review-is-whats-wrong-with-cheap-1583123298)
Anyhoo, the Times has just come out with their take on the vastly-improved Chrysler 200, which replaces a forgettable car that couldn’t avoid being mentioned in the same sentence as ‘rental lot’.
And they like it!*
*with some quibbles
The 2015 model went on sale at the beginning of June with new everything, minus the top-level Pentastar engine (which everyone agrees was the only flawless element of the new 200’s flawed predecessor). Classy-looking on the outside (with vaguely Audi-inspired lines), the interior of the 200 wowed me when I first sat in one at a March auto show.
We’re talking comfort, luxury, and nice trim that was pleasing to both the eye and the touch.
Reviewer Lawrence Ulrich (I’m putting that name near the top of my alias list) was clearly smitten with the car’s interior, though I can’t agree that the 200 has a “distinctly American design.”
The car’s new 9-speed automatic – actuated via a novelty rotary shift knob – does get called out for gear-hunting and roughness (possibly an early production problem that can be corrected with a software tweak), as well as a soft suspension seemingly calibrated for comfort rather than handling.
Props are given to the vehicle’s design, materials, and the availability of both class-leading fuel efficiency and raw power.
(Read the full write-up here: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/06/automobiles/autoreviews/2015-chrysler-200-review.html?_r=0)
At first, I didn’t know how to feel about the Chrysler’s new body, but it has grown on me since. Obviously, it’s better in every way than its bulbous, boring predecessor, with lines and curves that convey both length, strength and heft (hallmarks for any luxury sedan).
I wish to drive this alluring beast.
The old 200 sold in fairly good numbers in its last couple of years, thanks to a low, low starting price and upgrade packages that didn’t break the bank. It very well could have been the cheapest way to get into a midsize sedan with V-6 power.
Commercials aired in all mediums flogged the previous 200 to such a degree that Chrysler will have its work cut out for it as it tries to alert the buying public to the presence of this all-new vehicle with an old name.