This Might Be the Best Deal In Town, But It’s Not Here For Long.
There are many things we love about the Chrysler 200: Its elegant exterior, which resembles more expensive European cars. The luxuries that come standard. The innovative features like the dial shifter, the arm rest that offers flexible space and its self-parking technology (yes, it can park itself).
So it makes us super sad that the end of 2016 will also see the end of the Chrysler 200.
Yes, cars come and go. Sometimes when a car is on the way out, it’s a good idea not to buy it. Not the case with the 200. Here are some of the things we love (and will miss) about the Chrysler 200.
Nice luxuries, even at the base level
The 2016 Chrysler 200‘s budget friendly base price of $24,490 does not have navigation or some of the other new car technology features (lane keep assist and adaptive cruise control), but it’ll please new car buyers who don’t want those features.
The Chrysler 200 Limited Platinum model I test drove was priced at $28,175, and offered value and a luxury look and feel, but I was surprised that it didn’t have navigation.
Despite not being fully loaded, the Chrysler 200 Limited Platinum had luxury to spare. The black forest green pearl coat paint looked nearly black; it was elegant and the linen interior complemented the exterior color nicely. The swooping lines of the car felt modern and fresh. Inside, the leather seats were heated in front, and the leather steering wheel was heated. Nice details for a not-fully-loaded model!
The ambient LED interior lighting makes the car a pleasure to drive at night, and dual temperature controls let the driver and front seat passenger both get comfortable.
Why would anyone NOT want a navigation system?
It’s like being the lone voice in a kitchen showroom saying, “No, I don’t want a touchscreen on my refrigerator door!” I just want a shiny upgrade that looks great and performs even better. But my in-laws just bought two new cars and they adamantly didn’t want navigation systems. They find them confusing and prefer to go old school, with maps. I thought it was just an age thing, but I spoke to friends my age and younger who confirmed that they prefer NOT to have many of the bells and whistles in new cars for a variety of reasons, from waiting for all the bugs to be ironed out to not wanting to pay extra for something they won’t use.
For new car buyers who feel that way about all the bells and whistles, the Chrysler 200 offers this option, though with production coming to an end, buyers may have to search for a model without these features.
Who the Chrysler 200 is for
- Singles, couples or small families
- People who want a sleek look for less money
- Drivers who prefer a sedan
- Buyers who don’t mind buying the last model year of a car
- Cold weather dwellers who want a heated steering wheel and heated seats
- Families with small kids; though the sedan seats five, four would be more comfortable on a long trip
Other cars to consider
Base or Platinum, a nicely designed interior with handy storage keeps things tidy
The front center armrest has a deep storage area with a USB port; the top slides so you can conceal what’s inside. There is also a storage area under the center console, where you can stash a small purse. There is an overhead console as well with a sunglass holder; we used this to keep our E-Z Pass readily accessible.
We used the Chrysler 200 to help move our daughter into her first Washington DC apartment, and easily fit all her bags into the trunk. It also has a pass through in case you want to transport oversized items. We could have hauled skis, a mop or a broom if she’d needed any of these (clearly, she’s not planning to ski; I hope she’s planning to mop and sweep, though).
The Chrysler 200 is no Luddite – it has WiFi!
New FCA Chrysler models have UConnect with WiFi and easy to use touchscreens. And if touchscreens aren’t for you, no problem: There are also buttons and knobs, so everyone is happy. The 8.4 inch touchscreen in the car I drove had Sirius XM radio and six speakers. It was easy to connect my phone via Bluetooth, and the WiFi was a welcome addition saving me from exhausting my data plan when using my phone for navigation (though keep in mind that the Wifi requires a data subscription).
I also really liked the dial gear selector; it’s so easy to go into drive, reverse or sport mode. The car’s standard backup camera made backing up easy, and the remote start and smart key fob were another feature that gave the car a more expensive feel. Higher trim Chrysler 200 models also come with automatic parking; you can see how it works here and here.
The Chrysler 200, a midsize sedan, is rated at 32 mpg on the highway, but we got closer to 27 mpg driving I-95 from New York City to Washington, DC. The model we drove had an upgraded V6 engine, which is probably responsible for less than stellar fuel economy; the 4 cylinder engine in the more basic LX trim is EPA rated for 36 mpg on the highway.
We’re going to miss the Chrysler 200. When it made its debut in 2012 we thought it was a beautiful car at a good value and we still think that now. If you take a test drive or buy one, leave us a note!
What We loved
- Luxury look for under $30,000
- Heated seats and steering wheel
- Easy to use knobs, buttons and touchscreen
- On board WiFi
- Lots of handy storage
- Dial gear selector
What you need to know
- Base price: $24,490; price for the model I drove,with leather seats, larger touchscreen and V6 engine, $28,175
- Fuel economy: 23 MPG; 19 in the city, 32 on the highway
- Regular fuel recommended
- 5 year/60,000 mile powertrain warranty
- 5 star government safety rating
Note: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (aka FCA) loaned me the Chrysler 200 for the purposes of this review. Opinions expressed are my own.