TTAC - Chrysler Suicide Watch 2007 Sebring/Avenger

Discussion in 'OT Driven' started by TriShield, Mar 26, 2007.

  1. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2001
    Messages:
    132,737
    Likes Received:
    1,604
    Location:
    PRESIDENTIAL TOWER, GREAT AGAIN, NY
    [​IMG]

    By Jonny Lieberman
    December 20, 2006

    TTAC recently placed Chrysler on suicide watch for the easily correctable fact that vast empty spaces and dealers' lots are stuffed with Chrysler/Dodge cars, trucks, minivans and SUV's that no one wants to buy.

    The new Sebring is a far deadlier proposition: a car headed straight for rental car Hell.
    For a few bills less than our semi-loaded (half cocked?) Sebring tester, you can buy a base Chrysler 300, which, according to Mr. Mehta, has “reinvigorated American car design.” The new Sebring is less invigorating than Vicodin. In fact, I reckon the model only exists because car rental customers are still willin' to take what they get.

    Viewed head on, the Sebring's got a lot of Aspen and a bit of Crossfire and none of the underworld zazz that made the gangsta 300 such a hit. The Sebring's nose isn’t particularly hideous, but the side view sure is. In profile, the Sebring is flat-out Frankensteinian. I can’t believe this abomination got out of Ralph Gilles’s lab alive. (Where's a pitchfork when you need one?) From the doors back, the Sebring appears to be suffering from dwarfism. The strakes, while not plastic, are as ungainly as anything crapifying a Pontiac. And the Sebring's top line was created via machete; it's an ugly, deforming slash.

    [​IMG]

    The Sebring is based upon the fetching Airflite concept car, a machine that betrayed its right-wheel driveness via a long hood and fenders. Just as DCX trashed the drop-dead gorgeous Crossfire concept car by mandating it be built on a truncated cast-off SLK chassis, the graceful proportions of the Airflite have been murdered by its Mitsubishi underpinnings. Here’s the knife in the back: the Mercedes C-Class is due for a refresh. If Dr. Z had based the Sebring on the old C, it would not have become a nightmarish eyesore. But he didn’t so it is.

    A friend of mine goes numb with boredom whenever I discuss cars. She simply doesn’t care (and therefore drives a Saturn). After four seconds seated in the Sebring’s passenger seat she pronounced: “This feels like a rental car.” I’ll skip the obvious (don’t touch anything save the heated/cooled cupholder) and get to the glaringly obvious. The steering wheel features wings made out of the same plastic as your kid’s toy sword, angled so that reflected sunlight blinds any driver condemned to seat time in this clueless car. The ugly, even harder plastic sheet glued to the back of the seats makes sitting in the puny rear that much more miserable. This from an automaker owned by Mercedes? For shame.

    The top-shelf $25k Sebring Limited is fitted with a SOHC 24V V6 producing 235hp and 232 ft.-lbs. of twist. That’s enough grunt to motivate the Sebring from zero to 60mph in… wait for it… 7.7 seconds. While not slow per se, the stat's not competitive. A similarly priced 260hp Nissan Altima does the deed in 6.6 seconds. The 244hp Honda Accord takes 7 seconds flat. As for the Sebring’s engine note noise, well, if Angus and Malcolm Young and Bon Scott hadn’t written a song called "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap," they would've jumped out of this car suitably inspired.

    [​IMG]

    Aside from the Sebring’s grabby stoppers, middling acceleration is the car’s dynamic strong point. The handling puts the abyss in abysmal. There’s so much torque steer that it’s a constant battle just to keep the car pointed in a straight line. Even a minor stab at the go-pedal triggers the tiller’s disapproval. Turns are just plain awful. Moving left and right is a multi-step affair. First, turn the wheel. Second, wait for the vehicle to fully lurch over onto one of the front springs. Finally, sit in terror as the weight is unloaded and the car leans all the way back in the other direction, maybe (or maybe not) aiming where you pointed it.

    Improbably enough, the ride is even worse. With the Sebring's short wheelbase and lousy suspension, bumps aren't just felt, but profoundly understood. A choppy stretch of pavement can induce sensory hallucination; I swear a tiny man with a jackhammer was attacking my kidneys. And the pizza box thick (and flat) seats lend no support whatsoever. I will testify under oath that the engineers responsible have never driven a car in their lives.

    I don’t get it. DCX must be trying to kill Chrysler. They’ve faced-up to the fact that the monster profits once found in lardo SUVs have dried up and decided to move on. Sunny Von Bulow knows what happens next.

    Do I sound insane? Paranoid? Delusional? I cannot think of another remotely credible reason why any carmaker, knowing full well that the Camry and Accord are out there, would bring such a tired dog to market. Seriously, how profitable can rental cars be?

    [Chrysler provided the vehicle, insurance and a tank of gas.]

    [​IMG]

    http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=2825

    ---------

    [​IMG]

    By William C Montgomery
    March 30, 2007

    Riding in a golf cart to the nether regions of a dealership lot, an aging salesman explained his selling strategy. “Chryslers appeal to either male or female buyers,” he declared through nicotine-stained teeth. “Take the Compass. That’s for the ladies. The Wrangler? Boys’ toy.” As our EV reaches the 2008 Avenger, it's clear that the latest entry in The Dodge Boys' lineup is no purple Barbie Sport Convertible. But does The Avenger deliver the goods, or is “he” an impotent superhero look alike?

    First, let’s be clear about from whence cometh this car: the Dodge Avenger is a reskinned Chrysler Sebring, just as the Dodge Charger is a reskinned Chrysler 300. It’s a cheap and cheerful way to give Dodge dealers something to sell that isn’t the late, unlamented Stratus, or the slow-selling Dakota, or Ye Olde Durango. Something that’ll keep the UAW’s factories humming– at least until someone else takes over.

    Compared to the Sebring’s disjointed styling– afflicted as it is by a clash of Art Deco motif and Analytic Cubism — the Avenger is, um, handsome. Dodge’s crosshair grille looks far more rugged than the Sebring’s muzzle, and more elegant than the stubby, pug-faced Dodge Caliber. The Avenger’s chin spoiler and front bumper form a Charlie Sheen-like square jaw. Quad LDH optics offer the intensity and sensitivity of Leonardo DiCaprio’s eyes, while the angular windshield and clean roofline project the nobility of Johnny Depp’s brow.

    While we’re beating the celebrity metaphor to a bloody pulp, the Avenger’s rear quarter panels broaden around the wheels like Fabio’s muscular shoulders and five-spoke “Ultra Bright” aluminum wheels flash like Matthew McConaughey’s pearly whites.

    [​IMG]

    Two flaws mar this otherwise stunning example of automotive manhood: cheap looking triangular black inserts that fill the aft corners of the rear windows and a useless wing adorning the rear deck, an aesthetic faux pas that suits The Avenger like an ill fitted toupee on a fifty-something athlete.

    Actually, I’m just being picky. The Avenger offers a distinctive design– especially compared to the boring (e.g. Honda Accord) and outright ugly (e.g. Toyota Camry) sedans that dominate the class.

    A quick survey of the interior confirms the Avenger’s true identity: an automotive Himbo. It’s attractive on the outside, vacuous on the inside.
    The Avenger’s interior designers attempted tasteful sophistication, refraining from button overload and utilizing classic shapes. But, once again, the quality of The Chrysler’s Group’s rock hard plastics is both inexplicable and inexcusable. Even Kia uses finer materials.

    The “chrome” piece that frames the gear selector is easily removed from its track. It’s a brittle piece of plastic with a chrome finish laminated to the top. This is the exact same kind of short-lived chromed plastic that GM used for the door locks in my mother’s 1969 Buick Skylark. I’d expect similar longevity from this and the rest of the dreadful Mopar parts blighting the Avenger.

    On the positive side, you get a Chillzone Beverage Cooler, heated and cooled cupholders and (for the hopelessly flatulent) “odor-resistant fabric upholstery.”

    My SXT tester sheltered a 2.7-liter 24-valve V6 mated to a four-speed automatic cogswapper. This so-called “powerplant” slots between the rental grade 2.4-liter 4-cylinder World Engine and the RT’s torque steer special: a 235hp 3.5-liter V6. Dodge (and my new chain smoking best friend) expects this drivetrain will be US customers’ mill of choice. The 2.7 produces 189hp and delivers 19/27 mpg (as per updated EPA standards). How great is that?

    [​IMG]

    Not very. The V6 Avenger delivers neither driving excitement nor outstanding fuel economy.
    At pedestrian speeds, the Avenger's ride is market compliant. At anything above a parking lot pace, the Avenger lacks the chassis poise and steering feel to reward anything remotely resembling a spirited maneuver. As indicated above, the Avenger channels all its meager power through the front wheels. (Optional AWD sends some torque to the rear wheels when needed.)

    Push this dreary driving street rod towards the extremes and the 17” wheels (an upgrade from the SE’s 16’s) and chassis loses its composure like a paranoid schizophrenic at a UFO convention. If you love tire-squealing understeer slides– and what ignorant enthusiast doesn’t– the Avenger is a dream come true. Unfortunately, the drum and disk binders are a bit of a nightmare. They’re initially resistant to the idea of serious stopping, and lack feel once they get with the program.

    At the 2007 Dallas Auto Show, Dodge’s PR shills stood by an Avenger painted in Inferno Red Crystal Pearl and extolled the model’s many virtues. They compared it to all its rivals– except the Camry and Accord. At the risk of seeming sexist, the Avenger’s inability to compete with the class leaders must leave Chrysler hoping (against hope) there are some male buyers who believe beauty is only skin deep. Pigs.

    [​IMG]

    http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=3404
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2007
  2. fliptout

    fliptout New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2003
    Messages:
    24,266
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    bay area, ca
    side profile looks very saturn-ish
     
  3. Foo

    Foo Could I have been anyone other than me? OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2001
    Messages:
    39,271
    Likes Received:
    877
    Location:
    Houston
  4. Mperor

    Mperor Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2003
    Messages:
    32,883
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Seattle
    yup, its a POS car
     
  5. TracerBullet

    TracerBullet Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2003
    Messages:
    155,094
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Scene of the Noodle Incident.
    Why are car companies so fucking retarded?
     
  6. blkhonda1991

    blkhonda1991 "Zoinks!!"

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2001
    Messages:
    21,609
    Likes Received:
    15
    Location:
    Hartford, CT/Marlton, NJ
    chryslers new designs are horrid :barf:
     
  7. El Slotho

    El Slotho Every hour wounds. The last one kills.

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2001
    Messages:
    24,473
    Likes Received:
    60
    Location:
    The Erf
    :rofl:
     
  8. borborygmus

    borborygmus Guest

    terrible, just terrible
     
  9. MCohen

    MCohen #NotMyPresident #AmericaIsAlreadyGreat #GoSolar OT Supporter

    Joined:
    May 30, 2004
    Messages:
    40,470
    Likes Received:
    524
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    I'm starting to believe what he's saying about DCX wanting to kill Chrysler. They're already pretty much dead in the water, and these new models like the Aspen and this Sebring are just adding weight.
     
  10. CJPA

    CJPA New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2002
    Messages:
    114,304
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    AZ, USA
    TTAC? :dunno:
     
  11. Tomash

    Tomash Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2003
    Messages:
    77,754
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Man, they really want to go under... What the fuck are they thinking?
     
  12. Tomash

    Tomash Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2003
    Messages:
    77,754
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    IBmichaelscottbuysone
     
  13. DaveyD

    DaveyD Fuck Ohio State, son

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2004
    Messages:
    18,781
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Somewhere in Minnesota
  14. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2001
    Messages:
    132,737
    Likes Received:
    1,604
    Location:
    PRESIDENTIAL TOWER, GREAT AGAIN, NY
    The Truth About Cars
     
  15. GregFarz78

    GregFarz78 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2002
    Messages:
    64,128
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Philly, PA
    saturn sebring?

    chrysler is getting worse by the day
     
  16. reee
     
  17. Variant

    Variant Cast in the name of God, ye not guilty.

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2004
    Messages:
    28,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Virginia
    what is their fascination with mundane, uninspired vehicles?
     
  18. mucky

    mucky .

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2001
    Messages:
    44,972
    Likes Received:
    0
    [email protected] cars without a V8.
     
  19. gnat

    gnat New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2004
    Messages:
    28,371
    Likes Received:
    0
    Vicodin can be invigorating! :hs:
     
  20. CJPA

    CJPA New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2002
    Messages:
    114,304
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    AZ, USA

    Ahhhh. 10-4.

    One word comes to mind about that Sebring--BLAND. However, the interior looks like they're taking cues from Acura, which isn't a bad thing.
     
  21. Steve Kerr

    Steve Kerr 6 Time NBA Champion OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2001
    Messages:
    20,384
    Likes Received:
    0
    Wow. Trisheild trashing an American car.

    I didn't see that coming.
     
  22. kaygee08

    kaygee08 Get me a Jäger Drip, Nurse!!!

    Joined:
    May 5, 2004
    Messages:
    6,387
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    THE Burg Aka Steeler Nation
  23. Supernoma

    Supernoma servus publicae OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2002
    Messages:
    11,825
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Dayton, OH
    Single action six-shooter in a world of semi-autos :hs:
     
  24. mucky

    mucky .

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2001
    Messages:
    44,972
    Likes Received:
    0
    Chrysler isn't exactly American anymore. :embd:
     
  25. blkhonda1991

    blkhonda1991 "Zoinks!!"

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2001
    Messages:
    21,609
    Likes Received:
    15
    Location:
    Hartford, CT/Marlton, NJ
    i thought of the 3 chrysler was going to be the leader, but they are falling fast
     

Share This Page