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Friday, March 18, 2011
Chrysler at the Geneva Motor Show
Chrysler had a big presence this year at the Geneva Motor Show. Chrysler and Lancia are merging synergies, and this opens up new possibilities for both car makers. For the US, we'll see Lancia's expertise in building elegant small cars being applied to Chrysler's US portfolio, and in Europe, Lancia will benefit from Chrysler's much broader vehicle range. This means Lancia will be able to offer, for the first time, a full range of automobiles in every major size segment.
One of the stars of the Lancia presentation was the new Lancia Thema. The Thema is based off of the brand new Chrysler 300C and is quite an impressive car. Chrysler invested 1 billion dollars in this new design, targeting quality, technology and performance. It shows. The initial impressions from automotive journalists indicate the Chrysler 300C rivals the Lexus LS460 and BMW 7 series.
In January, I had the chance to test the new 300C, and it was a revelation to me. I spend most of my time driving Audi products, and I'll confess: I am a Europhile. I prefer the European driving experience when it comes to driving dynamics.
The new Chrysler 300C AWD easily matched the latest from Audi. On top of that, the interior, especially in S Line trim, was fantastic. To say I was surprised is an understatement. I walked away thinking I would be happy owning one - I haven't said that about an American car in decades.
Videos and Photos: Fiat Group Press