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New models - Chrysler - Sebring - Cabrio

Sebring drop-top has power aplenty

Hard and soft: Base model Sebring Cabrio has a fabric roof, while top-spec Limited uses a folding metal design.

Chrysler's gutsy and glamorous Sebring Cabrio arrives just in time for Christmas '07

27 Nov 2007

CHRYSLER’S new Sebring Cabrio is about to reach local showrooms, with a well-equipped V6-powered entry-level version fitted with a fabric soft-top priced from $43,990.

Although this undercuts the recently-released Ford Focus CC by $500, that car offers a folding metal hardtop – but loses out big time in terms of performance as the bigger Chrysler comes with a 2.7-litre V6 engine and a six-speed automatic transmission.

A folding metal hardtop is also available on the Sebring, but only in the Limited model, along with a host of other equipment that results in a price jump of $7500.

The Chrysler Sebring Cabrio also undercuts other smaller rivals such as the Holden Astra Twin-Top, Renault Megane CC, Peugeot 307 CC and Volkswagen Eos.

11 center imageChrysler is also introducing the new V6 engine and six-speed auto to the Sebring sedan for the first time from December, with the Sebring Limited 2.7L priced from $40,690 – $3000 more than the 2.4-litre four-cylinder version with only a four-speed auto.

The 2.7-litre V6, which was first mooted a year ago when the Sebring sedan was confirmed for Australia, develops 137kW of power and 256Nm of torque (compared with 125kW/220Nm for the four-cylinder).

Chrysler builds the Sebring Cabrio at its Sterling Heights, Michigan plant and has allocated 400 units to Australia for the next year, but local executives are hoping to increase this allocation in late-2008 if there is sufficient demand for the car here.

Standard features of the base Sebring Cabrio Touring include a powered soft-top that folds away neatly under a hard cover, ESP, ABS with brake assist, dual front and side airbags, tyre pressure monitor, powered driver’s seat, leather steering wheel and gear knob, alarm, cruise control, climate control and 17-inch alloys.

As well as the folding metal hardtop, the Limited model adds 18-inch alloys, a touch-screen 20GB hard-disk multimedia unit (but not Sat Nav, which costs another $2750), a premium sound system, two-tone leather interior, heated front seats and heated/cooled front cup holders.

Chrysler claims that the Sebring Cabrio offers the best rear seating accommodation for any convertible under $60K and consequently believes it will compete with much more expensive cabrios.

Chrysler Australia expects deliveries to start in the first week of December.

Chrysler Sebring Cabrio pricing:
Cabrio Touring (a) $43,990
Cabrio Limited (a) $51,490

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