Chrysler made one of the past decade's strongest design statements with the 2005 introduction of the 300. The rear-wheel-drive sedan with blocky styling was a knockout with both the general consumer and, maybe more specifically, the aftermarket. Five years on and the 300 is still a SEMA favorite.
Sometimes, modded 300s look pretty swank. Of course, sometimes not so much. If you're standing in Chrysler's shoes, obviously you want to muscle in on this market. Meet the 300 S6 and 300 S8. Essentially, these two cars are appearance packages. However, we think they're great looking appearance packs.
The big difference between the new cars (both are badged with "300 S" instead of the more Audi-infringing S6 and S8 monikers) and the regular 300 is the grille. Gone are the full chromed snouts of the normal 300s, in are blacked-out grilles with chrome surrounds and body-colored accents. The doors are "shaved," the mirrors are body-colored and the headlight bezels are darkened. And, of course, the 20-inch wheels are highly polished.
The interior is also done up in low-key bling. There's a carbon weave steering wheel with red stitching and silver spokes, "track-tested" leather seats with a "300 S" logo with perforated suede inserts. The door handles are also done up in carbon weave with red stitching – a cool, thorough touch.
If you're wondering what the difference is between the two special edition models themselves, the 300 S6 comes with a 3.5-liter V6 (250 horsepower, 250 pound-feet of torque) and the 300 S8 comes with the 5.7-liter Hemi V8 (340 hp, 390 lb-ft of torque). Visually, the difference is quite slight. The 300 S8 has twin pipes and nearly solid-red taillights, while the 300 S6's rear lights feature a clear round circle. Also, we called Audi to ask about infringement on their S6 and S8 names. "No comment."