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Chrysler 300M



  • Thanks for the encouragement. We had just come from the Toyota dealer after test Driving the Camry. It felt like I was driving my Dad's car (and I'm 42)!!!

    Like I said, I had read about the 300M in a couple of magazines so I told my wife I wanted to stop at the Chrysler Dealer before heading home. The Salesman immediately gave me the keys, we got inside, my wife loved the interior (A major plus. We've been looking at more expensive vehicles which were so-so. In fact the Mercedes E330 front driver seat was so hard it felt like I was sitting on a park bench.) I drove it for a few minutes and told my wife, "You gotta drive this!". She got in, put her foot on the accelerator and said "WOW!" So it looks like the 300M will be the car. :^)
  • splattsplatt Posts: 328
    in getting the M. It's a great car at a really nice price (boy, don't I sound like an ad ;) Have you seen the Special version btw? If you haven't bought it yet, I'd see if you can find a dealer with one to test drive. It's very sweet - dual exhaust, upgraded amenities (basically most of the options) etc...
  • I am thinking of replacing my OEM Michelin tires (30K miles) and one dealer recommended Falken ZE 502 tires. They are alot less expensive than new Michelins, being only $80 plus mounting per tire. Does anyone have any experience with Falkens? My 1999 has the performance package so I am looking a V rated, 16" tires.
  • ottowrkrottowrkr Posts: 778
    radtech- ENVY EH !!!

    We were given a info sheet about the 04 cars at work recently. We will stop building second Gen LH cars in Sept 2003.It will take them 8 weeks to re-tool the plant for the LX model .The first 2004 customer car will be built Jan 2004.
  • lflowerslflowers Posts: 155
    Well, my M is in the body shop for repair of the damage caused when the bike rack in my own garage fell on it. So I'm driving an Enterprise rental now. I reserved a full size sedan thinking that I'd probably get a Grand Prix or a Malibu (that's what I've gotten from Enterprise in the past). However, this time they were out of cars in the size class I reserved, so they upgraded me to a full size Dodge pickup truck. My last vehicle, before my M, was a Ford F-150, which I hated because of the handling, the huge size, etc. Well, this Dodge makes the F-150 seem like a sports car. This thing is HUGE and feels so isolated from the road that yesterday, while starting up from a red light, I couldn't feel the rear tires spinning until I hit dry pavement and they hooked up! Boy, will I be happy to get my 300M back!
    Lynn Flowers
    McKinney, Texas
  • sdmike2sdmike2 Posts: 2,909
    I'm out of town on business..pretty much like every M-W anymore. :/
  • sdmike2sdmike2 Posts: 2,909
    Otto! Muh Man! I'm glad to see you get to have a *little* bit of fun up there. Interesting to hear your impressions on the Special too. Have you driven enough M's to really tell if there is an acceleration difference? I calculated once that the 2.7 gears would make about a 6% difference in time to 60...essentially dropping a 1/2 second off. Not too bad. I've considered doing a swap since it's the same tranny. I don't remember...did you say one of your buddies there said I couldn't do a straight swap? I have a fuzzy memory (no offense,

    So, what's up with the '04? Anything other than a schedule? I've been riding with my information from the market survey event for a couple of months now, and it would be nice to get an update from you if you hear anything else.
  • sdmike2sdmike2 Posts: 2,909
    Congrats on your pending purchase. I drove a lot of $30,000 things before I bought "Big Red", a fully loaded '01 Inferno Red, including the Acura TL, ES300 (last year's), Avalon, Diamante, Millenia, and others. I hadn't really considered a domestic car, but on a lark I went to Edmunds just to see what else was considered in the the entry luxury class. I didn't know what a 300M was, but it was listed so I figured I should go look at it. I was almost immediately sold. The size (I can fit 3 car seats across the back), comfort, performance and looks overwhelmed everything else I looked at. It's also been fun to mess around with (spoiler, dual exhaust, tinting, shaved lettering, etc.) which is something I'd never do with a MB or bimmer. All in all it's been a joy. If you get it, I don't think you guys will regret it.

    Big Red's Page
  • blondablonda Posts: 542
    300 Michael - Thanks for the info on the door mechanism. Hopefully that's the problem, but do you think they actually had to get into that area with just replacing the bezel? (and the door won't open from either side by the way so it's not the child safety lock).

    SDMike - If I took my car to the dealer for service I would definitely use Jeep (I go to Jiffy Lube). As far as warranty work, they told me when I first bought the car that they prefer to not do it as the service techs just are not familiar with the 300M (or anything but an SUV for that matter)which I think is another sign of their good service.

    Easy - I bet they will replace all 4 bezels. No way my car is going to have one of each on both sides--it is a noticeable difference. The service manager didn't enven hesitate to replace the first 2 (and the 2nd one was out of warranty). Im sure they'll deny the scratch. Looks like any easy one to fix with touch-up paint anyway.

    Can anyone answer my question re: their outside window bezels on the 2000 M's? Are your's one solid piece or 2 pieces (with the pillar and back half-oval shaped section on the rear doors as separate pieces)? I need to know if this was a design change or...yet again a misordered part. Otto, do you know?
  • splattsplatt Posts: 328
    blonda - be careful with Jiffy Lube - I went there for the last time about a month ago. They kids that work there (most of them are young and very inexperienced) stalled out my M! I wanted to strangle him. I heard him saying to a partner he was playing with the autostick. I'll play with his autostick.... :(

    Anyway, I spoke to him after they finished - told him never to even think of playing again, and talked to his manager as well. However, after watching them - doing the change yourself should be a piece of cake. The filter is on the drivers side of the engine at the front, the bolt on the pass side at front. Jack up the car, and go to town. I'll be doing that from now on...

    Scotian - I'll look at mine, but I think we have different trim. I've got the 01 and it has a chrome trim around the windows - did they not have that on the earlier models?
  • sdmike2sdmike2 Posts: 2,909
    Chrome was an addition for '01.

    I don't mind using a lube shop, since these guys do dozens of oil changes a day...and one would think they'd be pretty good at it. I just take my own filter and oil (both Mobil 1) and they charge me about $8-$10 for the labor.
  • splattsplatt Posts: 328
    Just watch the guys who pull your car in (as noted ;) I saw them stall out at least 2 different other cars - that were manuals. My wifes old Acura, they could barely move. Granted she had 130k on the one clutch, but...

    Usually they are ok, but the M was the last straw. Can't be that hard to do myself...
  • sdmike2sdmike2 Posts: 2,909
    ...paying $10 to avoid the hassle of jacking up the car, doing the work, disposing the oil, and cleaning myself up (and the drain tub, etc.) is worth it. Of course, just my personal opinion. :))
  • denvermdenverm Posts: 358
    I change my M's oil myself every other time (in between 7,500 mile service trips to the dealer). A few tips: I don't find it necessary to jack up the car. The oil filter is difficult to access; the best (only?) way to remove it is with one of those black plastic/nylon socket caps that fit over the end of the filter. Be careful not to overtighten the drain plug in its aluminum hole - strip it and you'll wish you had paid someone else to change your oil!
  • splattsplatt Posts: 328
    Thanks for the tip. I'll keep it in mind next time. I may go for one this weekend...
  • blondablonda Posts: 542
    Scotian - thanks for the picture of the window trim. That's exactly what I have. The one they have replaced (so far) is the rear. The difference between the rear ones (even though they are on opposite sides of the car)is very noticeable. Still waiting for replacement on the front drivers side. I think I have a good shot at getting the other 2 replaced. It's obvious why they changed the design. The previous design is near impossible to get a clean fit. I have gaps all over the place and it certainly doesn't look right on a $30,000 car.

    As far as Jiffy Lube - I have used them for years with no problems. The one by my house usually has the same people working there and I do the same as SDMike -- bring my own Mobile 1 filter.
  • jona57jona57 Posts: 192
    I seem to remember reading a few months ago that DC was going to try to expand its MOPAR performance parts business- as Mercedes does with certain AMG parts. Have you heard anything about the Special's exhaust &/or gear set becoming available for other M's? My local 5* does not have any parts lists for the Special yet, so they are no help (surprise, surprise :) ). As you may recall, I ended up buying a 2001M with PHG. (BTW- thanks for answering my e-mails requesting advice 6 or 7mo. ago!). Since I love the luxury group & chrome wheels on my car, (and since I can't swallow the $7-8K extra the dealer wants for trading my 01M in on a Special) I may just spend some $$ on dual exhaust and a gear set .

  • rstilprstilp Posts: 105
    Due for 30k service. Called to see what all needed doing and was told; normal oil change, filter, adjust drive belts, transmission drain and filter plus fuel injection service. $260.00 total.
    Do I need all this? On their reminder letter they (5*) had "replace power steering fluid" which I asked about and he said no they were'nt doing that.
    Is there some inconsistency here? I hate the distrust situation but, are they going to try to hose me? I hate being hosed.
    What really needs doing at 30k?
  • hmk123hmk123 Posts: 122
    Thanks for your replies. I looked at the black plastic part at the end of the rear door. It seems a bit too loose. I will investigate some more and then I guess I have to take the car to the dealer. It sure seems like it rattles more now than it did a month ago. It's not the biggest deal since you can't hear it when the radio on. But it would be nice to know it is gone :-)

    Thanks again,
  • scotianscotian Posts: 1,064
    My 5* had never heard of anyone doing that or wanting to do that until I came along (I noticed it in the schedule B maintenance & I was trying to track down problems that ended up being a bad rack & pinion). I didn't replace the fluid, but I got a new R&P under warrany.

    I remember talking to one of the shop guys who said it was a good idea to change it, but it sounded like he would have said replacing the air filter solenoid inverter was a good idea at 30K as well, if I had asked.
  • hmk123hmk123 Posts: 122
    Thanks for your replies. I looked at the black plastic part at the end of the rear door. It seems a bit too loose. I will investigate some more and then I guess I have to take the car to the dealer. It sure seems like it rattles more now than it did a month ago. It's not the biggest deal since you can't hear it when the radio on. But it would be nice to know it is gone :-)

    Thanks again,
  • splattsplatt Posts: 328
    rstilp - look at the manual. The schedule B is a little more conservative, and I try to follow that myself. Go to a mechanic that you like and ask how much the individual things listed will run - my guess is it'll be about half what the dealer charges. Their price for the 'service' tends to be very high. Just keep records and receipts for warranty purposes :)
  • Otto,

    I will make my last payment on my M in January 2004, just in time to start anew. :) About what time can we place a order for the N, November 2003?
  • What parts do you need and what's involved in making the change? Of the two gears, connected by the chain, I'm assumming it's the gear on the output shaft (on the right) that changes? The other gear and chain stay the same?

    How's this differ from the Prowler Pro gears? Less expensive? Not as much performance?

    When I installed a high stall converter on my GTO, I got an immediate 1/2 sec increase in 1/4 mile times. You can really feel it in your seat dyno.
  • scotianscotian Posts: 1,064
    I'm considering my muffler system options, namely the Borla single exhaust v. the Hugo semi-dual exhaust. I don't think a true dual exhaust is necessary, and may adversely affect torque (to me, acceleration is more important than top speed).

    Has anyone here had both systems installed on their car at some time? If so, which do you prefer? (If you've only installed one, then of course that one is better than the other!)

    Are the MagnaFlow 12258 and Rhino 921 the mufflers of choice for the Hugo system? Looking at the chart (, it seems that there are other options. Has anyone tried any of these?

    The Edelbrock looks interesting -- Is there a large difference between 74db and 88db?

    How does the Aluminized Steel of the Hugo MagnaFlow 12258 muffler compare to the stock muffler and the Borla T-304 Stainless Steel muffler in terms of longevity? What type of metal is the Rhino 921 muffler made of?
  • OK, I was going to buy the 300M today but now I'm setting my sights on the Special. Here's the problem. Nobody has them in stock and NOBODY WANTS TO GIVE ME A QUOTE ON ONE.

    I know the local sales guy is a tad perturbed with me right now because he thought he had an easy commision but it's my money. I don't spend over $30K very often and when I do, I want what I want. Has anyone here bought one yet or even test driven one?

    I like the idea of the Dual Exhaust (It must sound NICE), the larger tires, the ground effects, a tad more power and better brakes. I'm somewhat hesitant about using only Premium Grade Gas but the Mercedes and BMW both recommend Premium Gas too..

    So... Has anyone driven one or bought one on this site?
  • sdmike2sdmike2 Posts: 2,909
    Check back a page or two for a post by ottowkr. He actually works in the factory and is the only one that posts here that has driven one.
  • sdmike2sdmike2 Posts: 2,909
    If you are willing to take an '01 M you can get it for $7k or more off MSRP. That means you can get a nicely equipped one for around $25k. Might also be worth considering.
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