While it’s far superior to its predecessor, the 2012 Chrysler 200 earned one of the lower Total Car Scores in this segment.
Critics universally agreed that the 200 (in both sedan and convertible form) is much better than the Sebring it replaced a year ago in just about every way: styling, interior design, ride comfort, and, when equipped with the Pentastar V6, driving dynamics.
Yet the 200 still isn’t as good as its segment rivals in several key areas. Its standard four-cylinder engine is underpowered and returns mediocre fuel economy -- hardly better than the V6. And while the six-cylinder is powerful, the torque steer it generates under hard acceleration bothered some test drivers. Though reviewers liked the look of the 200’s interior, they felt it was cramped, and its technology offerings a bit outdated.
In sum, the 200 is certainly better, but still far from best-in-class. Industry insiders believe the 200 is just a temporary fix for Chrysler’s midsize sedan entry while it prepares a Lancia-based sedan for launch within a year or so.
For 2012, the Chrysler 200 has lower pricing for entry level models and two new exterior colors: Crystal Blue Pearl Coat and Deep Auburn.
The 2012 Chrysler 200 is a four-door, five-passenger sedan that’s offered in four trim levels. A 200 convertible version is also available.
The base 200 LX model comes only as a sedan and is powered by a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine sending 173 horsepower and 166 pound-feet of torque to the front wheels through a four-speed automatic transmission. Standard equipment aboard the LX includes power accessories, a CD/MP3 media center with steering-wheel-mounted controls, 17-inch steel wheels and a tilt/telescoping steering column. A power driver's seat and heated seats are optional
The 200 Touring model mates the 2.4-liter engine to a six-speed automatic transmission and adds features like 17-inch aluminum wheels, an upgraded sound system, automatic temperature control and automatic headlights. A power top and power front seats are standard on the convertible model.
The 200 Limited shares the Touring drivetrain but adds interior amenities like heated leather front seats, a hard-drive-based sound system, hands-free phone connectivity (which is optional on the LX and Touring models), 18-inch wheels and remote start.
The top-shelf 200 S model swaps the four-cylinder engine for a Pentastar V6/six-speed automatic combo that produces 283 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque. Additional upgrades include a premium sound system, suede seat inserts and distinct exterior trim.
Fuel economy ratings for the 2012 Chrysler 200's two engines are nearly identical: The 2.4 mated to a six-speed automatic achieved 20 mpg city, 31 mpg highway and 24 mpg combined, while the V6 recorded 19/29/22.
Total Car Score is not affiliated with, associated, authorized, or endorsed by, or in any way officially connected to any of the Expert Resources, nor does Total Car Score endorse any of the Expert Resources, or its affiliates.
Click here to see more.