Back in the mid-to-late 90s Chrysler was particularly
fond of developing curvaceous, voluptuous concept cars
that had an air of classic beauty about them. They produced
a number of such concepts, including the Atlantic,
the Chronos, and this,
the Chrysler Phaeton. The Chrysler Phaeton's styling was
actually inspired by the 1941 Chrysler Newport Phaeton.
The Chrysler Phaeton, unlike the Volkswagen
Phaeton, actually lives up to its name. That's because
the word 'Phaeton'
- aside from being difficult to spell - is also used in
formal automotive parlance to describe a four-door convertible.
One of the ideas behind the concept was to create a vehicle
in which the rear seat passengers would feel especially
important. There were even instrument gauges located on
a panel behind the front seats so those in the back could
keep an eye on the driver's performance. The front and
rear compartments also had their own separate media systems
and climate control. All the occupants enjoyed soft, pillowy
leather seats, and the high-quality trim was a mix of
woven leather inserts, satin metal highlights and Zebrano
Powering the Chrysler Phaeton was a 5.4 litre V12 which
produced 425 horsepower. The transmission was 4-speed
auto which drove the rear wheels.
Oddly, for a car designed to waft its occupants down the
road in unhurried and self-important grace, the suspension
system of the Phaeton was derived from that of the manic
first-generation Dodge Viper.
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