An updated 2016 Chrysler 300 SRT8 will touch down in Australia in six to eight weeks, the company’s local arm has confirmed with CarAdvice today.
Local buyers will be treated to tweaked styling and a small power boost in the familiar 6.4 litre V8 - now up by 3kW and 6Nm to 350kW and 637Nm - along with a long overdue upgrade to an eight-speed automatic transmission, at last dropping the outgoing model’s five-speed unit.
These improvements won’t come for free, however, with the 2016 model bringing a $3000 price hike to $69,000 plus on-roads.
Above: the 300 SRT8's less powerful sibling, the 5.7 litre 300 S.
Importantly, continued availability of a 300 SRT8 here comes as something of a salute to our insatiable desire for big power, with the Australian market now one of the few to be offered the hero 300. In its home market, the SRT badge is now exclusive to the Dodge brand.
Speaking with CarAdvice at this week’s local launch of the 2016 300 range, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Australia president and CEO, Pat Dougherty, highlighted Australia’s role in keeping the 300 SRT8 alive.
“We’re the lead market… we were the only market, originally, that was going to bring the new [SRT8] model out, but some other markets have now said they want to do that as well,” Dougherty said.
“That will obviously be our large performance car, at least until we have a decision on Charger and Challenger.”
A local debut for the Charger could also make this the last SRT-powered 300 to come to Australia, as Dodge takes over the company’s performance focus and Chrysler shifts to a more luxury-oriented strategy.
“Depending on what we do there, I don’t think we [Chrysler] would vacate that space completely, but it’s possible,” Dougherty said.
In Chrysler’s North American line-up, where an SRT model can no longer be had, the most powerful option is a 271kW 5.7 litre V8. Hardly small fries, but still a clear concession to Dodge’s role as FCA’s new performance leader.
Note: America's 5.7 litre 300S pictured. 2016 SRT photos still to come.