The Inside

Cabin materials are good, with padding all the way down to knee level and richer finishes than Chrysler has been known for. The automaker's new 8.4-inch UConnect touch-screen is a worthy centerpiece. Standard on all 300s, it boasts a fast-paced interface with excellent graphics and minimal lag between menus. Don't bother to get the optional Garmin navigation system, whose slow map scrolling and clumsy icons feel at odds with the rest of the system even though the two interfaces inhabit the same screen.

Chrysler says the windows and windshield are 15 percent larger than the previous generation's, and the windshield has been pulled back a few inches so you don't have to lean forward to see stoplights. Visibility (or lack thereof) won't be a deal-breaker, like it has been for some shoppers, but Chrysler hasn't exactly turned it into a strength. The roof still hunkers low, and the belt line still rides high. The 300 is no longer quite a pillbox, but it hasn't become a crow's nest, either.

Nor is it a living room. The front seats boast impressive adjustment range and room to stretch out, but the backseat isn't up to large-car snuff. By the numbers, backseat headroom and legroom are similar to the Avalon's — but the Toyota, in part thanks to its standard reclining rear seats, feels a lot roomier. As backseats go, the 300 is closer to the Taurus. Its 16.3 cubic-foot trunk is a slight improvement from before, and it trumps the Toyota's undersized compartment — but it falls short of Ford's mammoth confines.

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    Overview
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