2004 Chrysler 300m Special
For your veiwing pleasure, I present the 2004 Chrysler 300M Special. Argueably, the "big dog" of Chryslers (now discontinued) LH series. A limited edition model released in 2002, it was intended to compete with the BMW 7 series, but hobbled by it's front wheel drive platform it came out on more of a "3 series" level.
Keep in mind, this is limited edition for a North American manufacturer, Which means well...........not quite that limited! 1500 built the first year of production, close to the same in 2003, and estimates put it at a bit less for 2004 due to the end of the model line that year. Somewhere around 4000 in total would probably be a fair guess. Now consider that estimates palce it at 500 imported (seems weird to say imported when they were all manufactured in Ontario!) per year to all of Canada, and you're looking somewhere shy of 1500 in total. Not too bad, fairly exclusive "club" there. That being said, there's 5 here in my little rural town of around 7500 people! Go figure, what are the odds..........
"Sporty handling" was a term often applied to it by the press, but something that weights close to 4000 lbs is only ever going to be so "sporty". Quick ratio steering, lowered suspension, higher spring and shock valaving rates, with larger sway bars front and rear and 18" michelin pilot sport rubber made for a satisfying (if not a little rough) drive. The engine was given a small workover from the base 300m for 5 more hp out of the 3.5L, but the real fun is in the revised transmission shift points and pressures.
An understated "body lower kit", 18" wheels, HID lights, turn signal mirrors dual exhaust and Special badging were all that distinguished it from a base model M on the outside.
Rated at 22 city and 35 mpg highway, real world returns around a 24-28 mpg average. Considering the size of the car, more than repectable. On the highway, she'll return 30-33 mpg (with the cruise control set at a sane speed) to our cottage up the coast. A figure certainly welcome in these days of rising gas prices (although 35 mpg would be even more welcome!;) )
Inside, every option chrysler had for the M was installed. Nicely appointed with leather and power/heat and memory everything, combined with the shear amount of real-estate the car takes up, made for a very comfy cabin for four to five occupants.
Now that I've crossed to 40 mark, the car compliments my style very nicely. Able to get out of it's own way, and cornering like a rat in sneakers, she willingly indulges my ........*ahem*.........slightly immature side.......... when I want. A quick set of minset and she's ready to head out to dinner withthe swankiest of folks at the most expensive of places and not look out of place. And a stylish and comfy ride on the way.
Nearly perfet for where I am in my life right now.
Canadian Driver 2004 300M Special test drive:
Pictures of (what I like to call) my "sports executive" ride:
My comments on the project
Looks great, I almost got an 03 M, but it was snatched up on my way to go check it out. I like your latch system, but I'd be worried I'd hit a bump at a wierd angle and have the rack fall down.
Now, it'll be covered in some kind of matching carpet of course, right?
Subscribed, and watching what happens to it...