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A replacement in 2011 for the much-maligned Chrysler Sebring, the Chrysler 200 has been able to fill a void that the American auto manufacturer hoped would be the end result.

Like the Sebring, the Chrysler 200 was first offered as a midsize sedan or convertible, and car shoppers had their pick of several trim levels. An improved product over the Sebring, which offered an attractive convertible that came at a reasonable price, the Chrysler 200 has not languished when it comes to sales.

⤹ Roseville: June 20- 23! ⤸

⤹ Roseville: June 20- 23! ⤸

⤹ Roseville: June 20- 23! ⤸

⤹Roseville: June 20- 23! ⤸

According to a company spokesperson, sales of the 2015 Chrysler have grown in triple digits since its introduction. Chrysler says the sales were “exceeding expectations.”

2015 Chrysler 200

  • Performance: 2.4-liter, four-cylinder, 184 horsepower; 3.6.liter, V-6, 295 horsepower
  • Mileage estimate: 23-36 mpg; 19-32 mpg
  • Estimated price: $21,995-$30,825
  • Warranty: 3 years/36,000 miles; drivetrain: 5 years/100,000 miles; roadside assistance: 5 years/100,000; corrosion: 5 years/100,000

However, despite the improved product, the competition is tough. It includes the Ford Fusion, Honda Accord, Toyota Camry, Mazda 6 and Nissan Altima, all sedans with many appealing traits and a history of success.

Looking to make a move upward and become more of a challenger, the folks at Chrysler completely redesigned the 200 model this year. The 2015 Chrysler 200 is definitely improved.

Among the notable changes are:

* Switched to a slightly enlarged version of the platform used for the Dodge Dart and Jeep Cherokee
* Upgraded its four-cylinder engine to 184 horsepower
* Both engines come matched to a new nine-speed automatic transmission
* Overhauled cabin with improved materials and better touchscreen electronics interface
* No longer offers a convertible option
* Offers all-wheel drive as an option for all V6 models

Besides the aforementioned changes, Chrysler also made some alterations to the exterior, where appearance has always been one of the 200’s strengths. There’s nothing too appealing about the class leaders – Camry and Accord – while Chrysler 200 has a European look that is more dynamic and modern. The 200’s sweeping lines gave it a classy overall appearance.

The Chrysler 200 has a choice of two engines. The base model is a 2.4-liter, four-cylinder engine that produces 184 horsepower and 173 pound-feet of torque. It’s not too exciting to drive – clocked at 9.0 seconds going 0-60 mph. The gas mileage (23-36 mpg) has improved and is now a reported 28 mpg on average.

For car buyers who really value performance, the second option is a better choice. The Chrysler engine on the S and C trims is a 3.6-liter, V6 that has 295 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. It’s much swifter than the base model, going 0-60 mph in 6.2 seconds, but predictably not as good on gas (19-32 mpg).

No complaints here with the interior of the Chrysler 200. The redesign addressed an outdated cabin design and interface, which now features a more technological setup. For comfort, the 200 is just fine for driver and passenger, but the back seat will be cramped for anyone approaching 6-feet in height. The trunk provides 16.0 cubic feet and the 60/40 split-folding rear seat has a small trunk pass-through.

While improvements have arrived in a number of areas, this won’t catapult the Chrysler 200 into the elite level of midsize sedans. But the 200 is worthy of a look and a test drive.

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