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Chrysler 300M

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Comments

  • tayl0rdtayl0rd Posts: 1,938
    Well, your M feels heavier because it's a bigger, heavier car than your new A4. The Autostick doesn't have as many gears or as close of gear ratios as your A4. You've got a heavy, FWD car with a poorly spaced 4-speed automatic. The gearing is simply not properly matched to the 300M's engine.

     

    But don't worry, she can still scoot along quite nicely. Maybe you and your mom can take both cars out on the freeway. Run the A4 against your M up to, say, 100MPH. Don't want to get too crazy. That will dispell your fear of your M being sluggish as you're watching its taillights get smaller on the horizon. :-)) Despite a nice power band, it still takes just a little longer for the 300M to get into its sweet zone thanks to the transmission. (Now that I think about it, that's probably why they gave us Autostick to begin with. When you punch it on the freeway, I don't think it actually shifts all the way down to second gear if you're doing more than 55MPH. I think the torque convertor does some trickery in third gear to spin up the engine a little more. But that's just my opinion.)

     

    I had a run-in last night in my Special as I was trying to merge onto the freeway. I punched it to get up to speed after hooking through a really sharp onramp (man, this car handles like a slot car!), and there was some person trying to keep me from merging in front of him/her. They probably heard me punch it (had to go under an overpass) and he/she punched it too. From the looks of the headlights, it was a Maxima. It was basically a deadlock. They couldn't gain any ground on me, and I wasn't increasing the space between us (two people in my car); not until about 70MPH when I started to pull away. I got up just enough speed to merge in, then came out of it just before 80MPH. Cops have been patrolling that section of the freeway heavily lately.
  • On my 300M, which has the single CD/Cassette AM/FM stereo, pressing the time button once when the station display is on will change to the clock display and stay there. If you change stations the display changes for 3 seconds and then changes back to time. Like some others here I usually leave the display showing the station frequencies and use the analog clock at the top of the panel. Looking back at your post I see you are asking about an '04 model. It could be the display has been changed like some of the other "decontenting" I have heard about on later 300M's.
  • ski1003ski1003 Posts: 41
    I had the same issue with my 300M (2000). I had the dealer change the computer setting so that the clock is the default. It also bothered me so that's why I looked into it. I have had my 300M for 41/2 years and still very happy with it. I have 50,000 miles and have not had any problems yet. Still orginal brakes, tires...Almost traded car in a couple of weeks ago for a new 300C. Tried it out, had my wife go for a ride but she insisted it was too confining for her. I didn't get it but I don't think my heart really wanted that car and needed an excuse not to buy it. I still think the design is much better than anything else on the road today.
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 2,647
    Something else I miss about my M :-(. A classy touch, I feel. But, other than the tires performance in the snow (terrible, I miss the Eagle LS tires! Can I say Eagles, I'm a Pats fan, natch), my new TL is one smooth, quiet, handsome and powerful ride! The blue instruments are very cool, the sound system fab and I'm enjoying the tidier size and, again, quieter ride. For all the talk of failing trannys, I think the TL tranny makes much better use of the engine than did the 4 speed in my M. And it hasn't failed after over 600 miles!

     

     I think if one had to give up their M, moving to a TL would help ease the pain...

    '13 Jaguar XF, '11 BMW 535xi, '02 Lexus RX300

  • 02owner02owner Posts: 34
    Just wanted to report that my 300M struggled a bit on its Michelin MX4's in the snowy conditions prevailing Saturday and Sunday and on Monday night's black ice, even getting stuck once and having to be shoveled free. I can't help thinking this is a car in search of a tire, because it is beautifully balanced and its power curve is very smooth. All I know is that I either need snows on the front (I've never used 4 snows on twenty years of front-drive cars) or a better (maybe softer) all-season tire.
  • I'm with you on the analog clock! I got a custom clockface for my 2000 M that has my name and the 300M logo on it. I made sure I opened up the clock again to remove the clockface and put it in my 2003 M when the 2000 lease was up....

     

    When my wife's 2001 was totalled, I retrieved everything from her car, including her custom clockface. Unfortunately, when she bought her 2003 M, I couldn't find it in the bag of "stuff" I retrieved and I haven't been able to find it since. Too bad, because I think that clockface was part of her decision-making process to buy another M...
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 2,647
    Intrepid: When I traded my M, of course I cleaned it out (including keeping the cargo net for wife's car!). I filled two bags, one from trunk stuff, one from in car stuff. I still haven't completely gone through the in car stuff bag!
    TL has generic digital clock...

     

    Snow: If it makes you feel any better, the OEM Bridgestone's on my '05 Acura TL are terrible in the snow also... So far the TC/VSC/ABS has kept me going.

    '13 Jaguar XF, '11 BMW 535xi, '02 Lexus RX300

  • Thanks for all the replys. I do love the analog clock, I think it looks very classy. I just am not in the habit of looking at it yet. I never realized how often I looked at the clock display on the radio until it wasn't there.
  • I got an unpleasant surprise yesterday. My 2003 300M (9,500 miles) got a flat tire at work. I called Chrysler roadside assistance to change the tire (as I have done at least twice before with previous Chrysler/Dodge products). I was told that, beginning with the 2003 vehicles, roadside assistance was no longer available for flat tires!

     

    I would think that probably 50% of vehicle disablements would probably be due to flat tires. So Chrysler saved maybe $25-$30/car for 3 years of coverage by providing such a lame service. I realize they decontented the cars without revealing what they had taken out, but reducing the roadside service without letting you know (until you need it) is the ultimate in cheapness, and in my opinion, stupidity. As the owner/lessee of 3 late model Chryslers, is this how they value my business? Spending millions of $ in advertising to gain new customers and then dismissing them with this penny-ante treatment?

     

    Thanks for nothing, DC!
  • Still love my M....just less enamored with it's maker. :)
  • If you need a great all season tire for the M and want a tire that grips well in the snow, look into the BF Goodrich Traction T/A. It'a t-rated tire but it handles great or dry or wet roads. Read the reviews at tirerack.com. And as a bonus, the tire is very inexpensive and comes in the 17in size for our Ms.
  • The OM says that H-rated tires should be used whether PHP or not but the only 225/55R17 H-rated tires I know of are the Michelin MXV4, which are awful in the snow, and the Continental EcoContact, which have received mixed reviews on the TireRack website. Would it be a big beal if I mounted a T-rated tire such as the BFG on my M, which is a non-PHP car? I can't help thinking that a T-rated tire might have a smoother ride, and I need better snow traction. Otherwise, Bridgestone Blizzaks may have to be the answer.
  • I have had the t-rated tires on the car for about 4k miles. No problems at all. They handle great. I think they're good for 118mph. BF Goodrich doesnt make a proper tire size with an H rating. I was hesitant at first to buy a t-rated tire as previously I was using a v-rated Yokohama 420 tire. But I like these tires better than the Yokos. If you have a non-php 300M, give this tire a try if you want decent handling at a budget price.
  • clpurnellclpurnell Posts: 1,087
    I stepped up to the V-rated Yoko's which were cheaper and rode better than the Michelins. I would give them a try.
  • Has anybody checked out the 2005 Chicago Auto Show website? Take a look at the 2006 Buick Lucerne and tell me if it isn't heavily influenced by the '99 - '04 300M.
  • mmm...maybe from the side. I always felt the Altima redisgn of a few years ago was really a 7/8 scale 300M.

     

    One of the reviews of the 300C went on to say that it replaced athe 300M, but unlike the 300M it had a bold exciting design while the 300M was rather ordinary. Maybe in 2005 it is ordinary looking because the styling has been integrated into many other cars. In 1998, the 1999 was one of those "love it or hate it" cars because of it's bold styling.

     

    We'll see what they have to say about the 300C styling around 2011...I bet it won't seem so exciting any more...
  • tayl0rdtayl0rd Posts: 1,938
    Well said. It is the prime example of the phrase "How soon they forget..."
  • Well I am trading in my 2000m this morning. I'm getting 2005 Toyota Avalon. New stye and really think I will like it. Like you, still will miss my 2000m. It's been a great car, 51000 miles and never had a problem. Same tires, brakes, etc. I'm guess I wanted a change but still think I will miss the M. Also, didn't really get what I thought the car was worth for a trade-in but I didn't want the hassle of selling it myself. Whoever buys this car should be extremely happy, as on as it doesn't start having problems now. I also live in Mass so I know how the weather has been but the M never had a problem in the snow. Are you getting use to you Acura by now? Do you still miss your M?
  • You might say I am biased, but I believe the 300M has an enduring style and I still think it is the best looking sedan on the road today!

     

    I had the chance last May (when my wife totalled her M) to opt for the 300 (she would have taken over my M). The hemi was tempting, but not readily available at that time. And both my wife and I much preferred to have a 300M with the 3.5L engine than a 300 (touring or limited) with the same engine. In fact, my wife said she would not drive a 300 with any engine...so we got her a 300M demo (fully loaded) @ $10,000 off MSRP.

     

    From what I have seen, I don't know that Chrysler/Dodge is in our future, especially after seeing the disappointing Charger...
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 2,647
    Hi, Ski:

    I'm a skier, too if that is what your alias implies. Best thing you can do in winter!

     

    I do still miss my M but I'm enjoying the TL more and more. The quiet ride and great power (at higher RPMs) put a smile on my face. Not to mention, a la the 300M (which is seriously more handsome than the 300C), the excellent style both in and out. Like the M, the TL is a great car and value!

     

    My M was great in the snow, never a problem. The TL (and I blame the tires. They claim "all-season," I believe they're really three season!) not so hot. But it has gotten me there and back, just with extra caution.

     

    67,000 miles with no real problems in the M. A couple of new tires, brakes done around 60,000 miles and windows and tranny module in warranty, but it started every day and was just a pleasure to drive.

     

    I probably could/should have kept it one more year, but I was in the mood and Honda was offering 2.9% financing so I moved on.

     

    I continue to hope it has found a good home.

     

    Good luck with the Avalon. See you on the slopes!?

    '13 Jaguar XF, '11 BMW 535xi, '02 Lexus RX300

  • naatz1naatz1 Posts: 187
    I think we have chatted on tires on this forum before and I see other posting above. I have now tried my 04 300M with the stock Michelins in a few inches of snow and while "ok" am not overly impressed. I have the Traction T/As on my son's car and just recommended them to my daughter for her Chevy Prizm (Corolla) for next year - I think they are very good all around tires with a good bite for snow (can't talk on wear but they look pretty new after 12k miles and with a low price even if they only go 35-40k miles and have good winter traction, who cares?). I am glad to see they could be an option for my 300M, hopefully still available when I need them in 3-4 years.

     

    But I have a question: has anyone ever done tire siping with a touring tire? I was looking at tires for a grand prix a couple years ago and both Tires Plus and Firestone had recommended siping (maybe I am not spelling it right, but it's adding horizontal grooves to performance tires to get more winter "bite"). I went with the Traction T/As but now with the Michelins, while I know I'd void any warranty, these dealerships would "sipe" them for $20/tire for added winter traction. I just thought I'd see if any forum readers ever tried this as to be honest, I was skeptical but yet with tire shops pushing it seemed like it might be legit.

     

    BTW, I just called the sales manager at our DC dealer to discuss possibly buying the extended warranty as I need to do that in the next month to get his guaranteed special price w/i the first ownership year. It's tough to justify $900 as still NO problems with the car after a year and 8500 miles, superb quality. Or perhaps today I just found my first problem: with lights on automatic turning on the wipers don't switch the lights on. I checked the overhead console and it's programmed correctly ... seems odd as everything else is working. This is a nit, very livable, but maybe unless I goofed something up my first in warranty failure. We still are very pleased with the car; while I have gotten used to the new 05 300 styling my wife would never consider owning one. They are finally starting to show up in the northern states like MN where we live, perhaps some AWD models are arriving as a RWD powerful car just does not cut it in the snow belt. We plan to keep our 300M at least another 6-7 years yet.

    Dave in SE Minnesota
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 2,647
    Hi, Dave:

     

    Regarding the lights/wipers, and you may already know and have discounted this, on my '99 M with the lights in "auto" once you turn on the wipers the headlights by design don't come on for 10 seconds. I never had a problem. Once you turn the wipers on, did you check the headlights after 10 sec. had elapsed?

     

    I have an '05 Acura TL w/Bridgestone Turanza EL42 tires, avoid them like the plague if you are driving in snow! The BFG Traction T/A seemed to get pretty good reviews on tirerack.com. I may have to switch myself...

     

    Invest the $900 in a conservative investment (CD, Money Market, Savings Bond...). If you need reparis, you've got the money earning (nominal) interest. If you never need out of warranty repairs, well, same deal, you've still got YOUR money! IMHO & YMMV.

    '13 Jaguar XF, '11 BMW 535xi, '02 Lexus RX300

  • My only hang-up is that speed rating. It seems to me that a non-PHP 300M would, most probably, have a suspension similar to the Concorde/LHS/Intrepid, which used 225/60R16 T-rated OEM tires such as the Goodyear Eagle LS or Eagle GA, and use aftermarket T-rated tires such as the old Goodrich Touring T/A, Cooper Lifeliner, Dunlop G/T Qualifier, etc. Yet Chrysler does specify an H-rated tire on the 300M. I'm never gonna drive over 112 MPH, so I'm inclined to just get a T-rated tire this coming summer, but I don't want the suspension to be messed up. In any event, the MX4's are TERRIBLE in snow and ice, at least here in the northeast. I won't buy them again.
  • naatz1naatz1 Posts: 187
    Thanks for the tip but I tried the lights on auto and turned the wipers on but still nothing after 10+ seconds (which is interesting because a similar operation on my 01 Jeep GC puts the lights on right away). I suspect there is some quirk hiding in the manual, it seems odd just that part of the automatic operation would quit, or maybe it never worked (a missing/broken wire?). Thanks again on that and the extended warranty thoughts, I'll have to see what my mood is like next month before my 1 year window expires.
  • I know many owners of the 300M that have used t-rated tires with no negative effects. Several have used Yokohama t-rated Avids and are happy with them. Several have tried the BF Goodrich t-rated tires including myself and all have been very happy with them. The feedback on Tirerack by owners of the BF Goodrich traction t/a tires is overwhelmingly positive.
  • kylitokylito Posts: 17
    I just wanted to let everyone know the traction T/A's are awesome. I just bought them for my 2000 300m and use them up in Manitoba Canada where we are known for are insane winters. these tires are awesome for traction as well they are quiet. Before this i had the goodyear eagle LS. These tires were not worth the rubber they were put on. They should be discontinued. Terrible road noise, could not be balanced, wore out quickly and I could keep going.
  • Just be warned. You are suspect to law suites if you put under speed rated tires on a car that requires a higher speed rating. If you cause an accident, you can be held liable.
    I for one would never do that for the simple fact I drive too fast. Never had anything less then Z on my M.
  • Fuzzy,

    You have the PHP, right? Those of us with the 118 mph limiter would be legal with t's (although my preference is higher-rated).
  • Subject to suit if you don't have speed-rated tires and not traveling at a speed anywhere near the rating?
  • I've been following the messages about using T-rated tires on the 300M. Our speed rating system is based on a system used in Europe to rate tires for use on their high speed roads. Tire manufacturers and car builders set up the rating system so that tires could be matched to the performance of cars used on the no-speed limit roads. A speed rating is determined for the tires maximum load and pressure. The rating system ensures that a rated tire meets or exceeds the requirements for a particular speed. The speeds used for each rating are converted from kph, that's why the steps seem odd.

    Based on what the DOT has published on their web site, the speed rating does not affect or determine the handling characteristics of a tire. The tire manufacturer could make tires that were identical except for the speed rating. Most of the time they make the tires different for other reasons. Usually the rubber compounds and tread patterns are different for better dry or wet traction and tread wear. I imagine if the market wanted it they could make a Z-rated tire that would go 80,000 miles. However, to do that would require compromising handling as the rubber compound would have to be much harder to get the wear characteristics. For most driving we do in our 300M's most any speed rating would do (assuming you stay close to the speed limits!) Any handling differences would be due to what the tire manufacturer determined for a particular tire line not the speed rating.
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