The 2019 Chrysler 300 is like a flip phone. It cannot run Snapchat or Instagram. It scoffs at micro-sized hatchbacks and hybrid drivetrains. Without a full redesign since the mid-2000s, it’s outdated in some respects. Yet, somehow, it retains an aura of effortless cool that few modern options can match.

Best Value

The range-topping Chrysler 300C is a decent value for a luxury buy. Backed by the old-school soundtrack of a muscular V8, it’s swathed in quilted leather and Mocha wood bezels, and it includes niceties like heated rear seats and temperature-controlled cup holders.

But for most buyers, the value sweet spot is the Touring L trim. For a starting price of $34,035 (including destination), it comes with leather seats, a heated and power-adjustable front row, keyless entry, push button start, dual-zone automatic climate control, and flashy 18-inch rims. All-wheel drive is a $2,500 option, but it dings the 300’s already mediocre fuel economy. Instead, we’d spend the cash on the 300 Premium Group, which adds in some useful safety tech along with navigation and an upgraded sound system.

So equipped, our Chrysler 300 is a genuine luxury cruiser with charisma to spare, for well under $40,000.

  • Model: 2019 Chrysler 300 Touring L
  • Engine: 3.6-liter V6
  • Output: 292 hp / 260 lb-ft
  • Transmission: Eight-speed automatic
  • Drivetrain: Rear-wheel drive
  • Fuel Economy: 19 City / 30 Hwy
  • Options:300 Premium Group ($3,295, nine-speaker Alpine surround-sound system with a trunk-mounted subwoofer, auto-dimming driver’s side mirror, side-mirror turn signals and courtesy lights, LED fog lights, navigation, remote start, satellite radio and traffic, a universal garage door opener, front and rear park assist, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert)
  • Base Price: $34,035 (including the $1,395 destination fee)
  • Best Value Price: $37,330

Performance

Chrysler 300

The Chrysler 300 still opts for brawn over sophistication, but it’s charming nonetheless. The base V6 delivers reliable power, and the eight-speed automatic transmission is perfectly calibrated. For a true muscle-car experience, Chrysler offers a 5.7-liter V8 on 300S or 300C trims. Delivering 363 horsepower and 394 pound-feet of torque, the V8 is a force to be reckoned with, even in a car as chunky as the 300.

Most models have a comfort-oriented suspension, but we don’t mind – the ride is secure, confident, and refreshingly communicative, unlike many of today’s electronically damped alternatives. The 300S does a reasonable sport-sedan impression with shift paddles, a performance suspension, and a sport mode.

With old-fashioned powertrains come old-fashioned mileage. The best the 300 can manage is 23 miles per gallon combined with the V6 engine, according to the EPA. That number drops to 19 mpg with the V8. Although the V8 is a willing substitute, we would love see a 300 get the full Hellcat treatment.

Style

The Chrysler 300’s looks haven’t changed much since 2005, but like a well-tailored suit, it seems to be a timeless look. A long hood and rounded corners set off a sheer grille, melting back into the square and imposing proportions that give the 300 such presence on the road. The cabin is well designed, with pleasant curves and plenty of storage options. The interior shines on the top trims, where the retro analog clock pairs with natural wood trim and quilted leather to embarrass cars costing thousands more. Front seats are supportive and spacious, and the rear seat is comfortable for adults. In a nod to modernity, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard on all trims.

The 300’s biggest weakness is its safety scores. Chrysler does offer modern safety tech like automatic emergency braking and forward collision warning, but the tech is costly and only available on top trims. The story is mixed with crash testing as well, where the 300 scored just “Marginal” on the IIHS small-overlap test.

Although fit and finish are largely good, the base trim still uses hard plastics and a cheap-feeling dash. We wish the rear seats were a little more supportive, too.

The Best and Worst Things

Chrysler 300

These days, utility and efficiency grow more and more common, but personality seems to be in short supply. The 300 is a magnetic piece of Americana, but its antiquated approach to safety could use an update.

Right For? Wrong For?

For luxury buyers who prefer brash American character over foreign sophistication, the short list should begin with the Chrysler 300. It’s alluring and priced for value, with just enough in-cabin tech to remain competitive.

Buyers expecting innovation will find very little here. The 300 isn't the safest, most advanced, most efficient, or most spacious sedan for the money. For some drivers, these sacrifices may be too great.

The Bottom Line

In a shocking 15th model year, the 2019 Chrysler 300 seems to be eternally mounting a comeback. Its efficiency and safety scores are getting dangerously close to becoming obsolete, but the 300’s muscular power, high-quality cabin, and self-confident style have won us over yet again.