How to Customize a Chrysler 300

by William Zane

The Chrysler 300 makes a great basis for a custom, thanks to its terrific, straight-edged styling and great engine, particularly in 5.7-liter Hemi guise. It has also proven to be a popular model, so there are plenty of aftermarket accessories available for this distinctly American sedan.

Install larger wheels and tires. The 300's large wheel openings can take far larger than stock wheels. Larger wheels also reduce the visual mass of the body, Unlike some cars, 300s actually look good with 21-inch or even 22-inch wheels. To increase the grip in corners, install stickier tires on the larger wheels.

Lower the suspension. Almost every production car benefits from a lower, stiffer suspension, so ditch the soft, stock suspension for some lower springs and stiffer shocks. You can either go OEM (original equipment manufacturer) with the Mopar springs or use aftermarket springs from a company like Eibach. Match the springs with a stiffer set of adjustable shocks so that you can dial in your ride setting. Keep in mind that 300s equipped with the height adjustable rear suspension will not be able to use lowering springs.

Upgrade the brakes. No serious tuned car is complete without a big brake kit. Luckily for 300 owners, Stoptech, one of the best brake manufacturers in the world offers a big brake kit for the 300 that includes larger calipers and rotors, new pads and stainless steel brake lines. If you want to keep it cheaper, you can also simply install more performance oriented brake pads for better braking and stainless steel brake lines for a better pedal feel.

Increase the horsepower of the motor. Whether it's in V6 or V8 Hemi guise, the engine in any 300 variant will benefit from upgrades like a more freeflowing exhaust, better air intake and reprogrammed ECU (electronic control unit). Not only will it be more powerful, but it will sound better as well. For the truly power hungry though, nothing beats turbocharging or supercharging a 300 for maximum horsepower gains.

Upgrade the interior. Installing an Alcantara (ultra suede) headliner, door panels and seat inserts is a great way to make the interior of the 300 a much more welcoming place to be. You can also install an extensive stereo system, alloy pedals and shiftknob.

Install a body kit or upgrade the exterior. The 300's styling takes well to cosmetic upgrades, whether it's simply an aftermarket mesh grill to replace the 300's generously sized stock grill or a full body kit with different front and rear bumpers, side skirts and a rear wing. Have these parts professionally installed and painted by a body shop to get the best results from your investment.

About the Author

William Zane has been a freelance writer and photographer for over six years and specializes primarily in automotive-related subject matter among many other topics. He has attended the Academy of Art College in San Francisco, where he studied automotive design, and the University of New Mexico, where he studied journalism.

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