Minivan

FCA May Be Thinking About Completely Neutering The Next-Generation 300

First we lose the 300 SRT and now FWD is apparently in play.

Nowadays the Chrysler lineup isn’t looking so hot. There’s the 200, 300 and the Pacifica. That’s it, and the 200 is on its way out. That lineup may get watered down some more as FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne recently hinted that the new 300 could be built on the same FWD platform as the new Pacifica minivan. Marchionne made his comments at an FCA plant in Windsor, Ontario. He was there to thank the plant’s workers for kicking off production of the Pacifica and to chat with reporters.

This plant and this architecture is capable of making the 300 successor, the front-wheel, all-wheel drive successor," Marchionne told reporters. As you’d expect FCA's CEO was questioned further about this comment. Turning your flagship RWD sedan FWD is a big deal. Marchionne refused to double down on his comments, though, saying only that the plant is “capable” of creating such a car. "It's capable. It's not a commitment,” he said. The 300 isn’t exactly a sales star but its numbers are up over last year. In its April 2016 sales report Chrysler reported current year sales of the RWD four-door at 5,570, a bump of 47% from April 2015. Those numbers aren't great but they're also not bad for a full-size American luxury sedan.

Of course using the Pacifica’s platform to make two cars makes financial sense, but FCA already double dips with the LX Platform as is; both the Charger and 300 share it. While we doubt many drivers would care about the switch we think part of the sedan's identity is in its rear-wheel-drive DNA. Every other American automaker has thrown in the towel on RWD, so if Chrysler does the same it shouldn’t be killed by the masses. But for the sake of nostalgia we hope the 300 remains unchanged.

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