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chrysler 300c road trip

A Road Trip in a Chrysler 300C

What happens when you get given the keys to a Chrysler 300C for a couple of days? You embrace the oversized American car lifestyle. But, what happens when you get given the keys to a Chrysler 300C for a couple of days while in the States? ROAD TRIP!

chrysler 300c road trip

I went in search of windy and twisting roads up in Wisconsin, 100 miles North of Chicago, Illinois. But once I let the 5.7 HEMI V8 burst into life, I knew that was a lost cause for this big, burly American land yacht. Still, that didn’t stop me from blasting up the I-94 (the Interstate). With it being 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius); I set the A/C to maximum, set the cruise control to 55mph and let Spotify serenade me through the Beats sound system.

chrysler 300c interior road trip

An hour and half later, my time on the Interstate comes to an end and the couch on wheels that is the 300C is back to being the muscle car that it is. I come to a set of lights and can’t help but give the throttle a little blip. The 5.7 HEMI roars back at me, I can feel the whole car sway as I rev. Green; 400hp and 527Nm come into play as I burst away from a stand-still. I refrain from losing my licence quickly. I look at the John Varvatos analogue clock positioned above the Uconnect touch screen infotainment system; it’s 11.45am. I am meeting a group of car people who have an obverse taste in cars at 12pm.

Triumph TR6 TR4 Road Trip

I roll into Silver Lake, Wisconsin, following a Morgan Plus Four. I know I’m in the right place. I arrive at a small industrial unit and outside are an array of Triumph TR4s, TR5s and TR6s, none of which I have seen since I left Dublin three weeks prior. I am meeting with the Illinois Sports Owners Association; the equivalent of the Triumph Classic Owners Club back at home.

Triumph TR6 Road Trip

As I park on the opposite side of the car park, not wanting to offend the British Glory, the 300C John Varvatos Collection’s Phantom Black Pearl paint glistens in the Wisconsin 32 degree sun. I learn that the Signal Red TR6 is a one owner car from new and is very much not standard. The whole car has had work on it over the years with the owner knowing every little detail about the car. He tells me that the front driver-side wing has been painted after someone reversed into him within two weeks of ownership. Both of the doors were re-painted at the dealership before he took delivery of the car. He assumes it was due to damage while the car was being delivered to America. Due to regulations in America, USA-bound Triumphs never got petrol injection. Instead they had dual carburetors putting out roughly 105hp. This is down 20-45hp on the European cars.

Triumph TR4 Road Trip

After we natter about cars and I drool over some of the customer’s cars in the workshop, we head off to Lake Geneva; 16 miles East of Silver Lake. Both Silver Lake and Lake Geneva are where well-off Chicagoans retire for the Summer months and this is apparent in the housing and cars that pass by. Although, the six British sports cars still cause a stir as they rumble through the 20mph zones of these well-to-do neighbourhoods. Not far behind is the Chrysler 300C bellowing through with the V8 happily singing away. Although, it fits in amongst the other American natives.

Triumph TR4 Road Trip

Once I feed on a typical American meal (a chicken salad…), I say farewell to the Brits and go in search of scenic, small country lanes to put this boat to the test. I am recommended that Snake Road is one that fits the bill but is only about a mile long. I reach Snake Road and take off in a giddy fashion only to be slapped right back into reality after the second corner. The 300C is not meant for this, it is not a classic British sports car that loves to be driven to every inch of it’s life in the high rev range. It doesn’t soak up every hair pin corner gracefully. No; it is a loud, mean-looking muscle car that’s purpose is to cause a scene and cruise along a flat, straight surface with the V8 sound track keeping you company.

Triumph TR4 Road Trip

That is the reason why the road out of Lake Geneva was most special to me. It was said straight and flat surface with scenery that made it all worthwhile. Sure, I do love a nimble and quick hot hatch or sports car but it’s good to stray away from the norm every-so-often.

The Chrysler 300C John Varvatos Collection; my choice of V8 HEMI pleasure.

chrysler 300c road trip