Used prices are reasonable, from a buyer perspective, and there appears to be a good supply of sedans, but not too many convertibles, out there for sale…

The Chrysler 200 was introduced for the 2011 model year and replaced the outgoing Sebring.

It’s available as a mid-sized sedan, with coupe-like styling and a roomy interior, as a hard or soft top convertible with two doors and four seats.

The 200 is based on the same chassis as the outgoing Sebring but came with revised suspension geometry, stiffer body mounts, a raised roll centre, new sway bars and a wider rear track to improve both its ride and handling. There were also extensive upgrades to reduce cabin noise and these included acoustic lamination of the front door windows and windshield.

The 2011 edition of 200 came in base LX, Touring, Limited and top-line S trim levels. The base engine is a 173-horsepower, 2.4-litre, 16-valve four-cylinder. A carry-over engine from Sebring, it provides good low-end torque, decent fuel economy and is mated with a reliable four-speed automatic. City/highway fuel economy is 9.9/6.7 L/100km. Even the LX edition of the 200 comes with a very good equipment package that includes a tilt and telescoping steering wheel, four-wheel disc brakes with an anti-lock system, remote keyless entry with a security alarm, power windows, locks and mirrors (heated) and air conditioning.

The optional and newer 3.6-litre (Pentastar) V6 was a powertrain offering that came with a six-speed automatic. A quieter and smoother performer than the four-cylinder, this V6 can effortlessly produce 283 horsepower. Highway fuel economy (6.8 L/100km) is also impressive and almost the same as the base four-cylinder. Its city rating, however, is 11.0 L/100km.

The Chrysler 200 Convertible was available with the choice of two automatic-latching power tops. There’s a light-weight fabric-top with a glass back window or a (body colour) fully-retractable steel hard-top. Both types of folding top can also be lowered or raised remotely via the owner’s key fob, which is a neat feature.

In addition to being less expensive, the fabric-top is more compact when folded and allows more cargo space in the trunk. The hard-top, on the other hand, can provide a quieter cabin for occupants while driving and it’s more secure when parked.

Active safety improved with the addition of both electronic stability control and traction control systems as standard equipment in all editions for the 2012 model year. Otherwise, the 200 was unchanged. Some new paint choices were added for the 2013 model year, but other than that the 200 was again unchanged.

The 200 comes with an up-to-date complete passive safety package and its crash safety test ratings have been top-notch, both for the sedan and the convertible. In fact, the sedan achieved “Top Safety Pick” status with the IIHS (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety).

Consumer Reports rates the 200 as “below average” for predicted reliability, “above average” for owner satisfaction and “average” for owner costs. Used prices are reasonable, from a buyer perspective, and there appears to be a good supply of sedans, but not too many convertibles, out there for sale.

The Limited trim level (see price check chart) visually adds 18-inch polished aluminum wheels, dual exhaust tailpipes and inside upgrades include leather-faced seats. Like most Chrysler products the 200 offers high content and value, and it’s a good looking car.

Price Check: 2011 – 2013 Chrysler 200 (June 2014)

Year                                 Edition                                      Expect to Pay Today

2011                       200 Limited (sedan)                              $13,000 to $16,000

2011                   200 Limited (convertible)                         $18,000 to $22,000

2012                       200 Limited (sedan)                              $16,000 to $19,000

2012                   200 Limited (convertible)                         $21,000 to $25,000

2013                       200 Limited (sedan)                              $19,000 to $23,000

2013                   200 Limited (convertible)                         $26,000 to $31,000

*Prices vary depending on a used vehicle’s condition, mileage, usage and history. A complete mechanical check should always be performed by a reliable auto technician prior to purchase.

Safety Recalls: 2011 & 2012 Chrysler 200:

2011: A pivot rivet on the steering column may be missing or incorrectly installed and this increases the risk of driver injury in a crash. Dealers will inspect for steering column rivet presence and alignment, and repair as required.

2011/2012/2013: The airbag warning lamp may illuminate due to an electrical fault within the Occupant Restraint Control (ORC) module and the Active Head Restraints may not deploy during a rear impact collision. Dealers will reprogram the Totally Integrated Power Module or replace the ORC module, as required.

2012: The 3.6 litre V6 engine may have debris in the cylinder block from the manufacturing process and this could cause connecting rod bearing and crankshaft bearing damage. Dealers will replace the engine assembly.

2013: Certain vehicles may experience fuel leakage or engine stall due to a broken control valve in the fuel tank assembly. Dealers will inspect and if the control valve is damaged, the fuel tank assembly and vapour canister will be replaced.

2013: Some vehicles equipped with the 2.4 litre engine may experience a loss of oil pressure and subsequent engine failure. Dealers will replace the balance shaft module.

Contact: bob [dot] mchugh [at] drivewaybc [dot] ca

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