Cars Worth Noting - 2004 Chrysler Crossfire
2004 Chrysler Crossfire
The company that brought you the Viper should know something about building brand-image sports cars.
Crossfire is the first vehicle to benefit from the synthesis between merging Chrysler and Mercedes. Crossfire is plenty Mercedes SLK underneath, borrowing the small carís platform from the rear bulkhead forward (the rear was redesigned to accommodate the center-mounted exhaust.). But Chrysler engineers developed a Porsche-stiff chassis and tuned the Mercedes suspension to better handle the larger wheels and tires. Crossfire is fun to drive with a 215 hp Mercedes-built V-6 that rockets the little car along. The 6-speed manual shifts cleanly and Crossfire doesnít suffer much if you opt for the five-speed automatic.
The interior is simple in its brushed metal and metallic painted elegance. The spine that runs down the hood intrudes into the interior, even running down the shift knob. Like all good image cars, itís that first impression that stirs the heart, and Crossfireís designers didnít let us down. The stylish boat-tailed design was expertly massaged down over the SLK platform. With a high beltline and wide shoulders, Crossfire looks fast when itís standing still. Designerís kept the distinctive hood grooves, side strakes and the accent line that runs from negative behind the front wheel to positive as it crosses to the rear fender, forming the Xí that gave the car itís name.
While good German engineering has produced a car that will last, itís the unique Chrysler styling that will make in endure.