2013 Chrysler 300S Long-Term Update 3
In my previous update on Big White, I promised you I'd cover the 2013 Chrysler 300S' Bluetooth and the heated/cooled cupholders. I happen to be a man of my word, so on with the show.
The Bluetooth component of the 300's Uconnect 8.4N system is well-thought-out. Pairing a phone and managing the phone list is easy and intuitive, which isn't nearly as common among automakers as it should be. There are separate device lists for phone and audio devices, which is nice, but the system can trip if you try to connect to a non-favorite device and connect to the favorite instead (or not connect at all if that device is not present). That's something to keep in mind if you use multiple phones or if the car will be regularly used by multiple people.
On the functional side, I've never had an issue making a call or being heard by the person on the other end, and have even participated in a conference call from the car – the 300's quiet interior means that wind and tire noise is no worse than the usual background noise heard on virtually every conference call ever. Chrysler has a newer system in the 2013 Ram known as Uconnect Access that provides hands-free texting, remote unlock and start via your smartphone, and various other functional updates, but it appears that the 300 will have to wait until its mid-cycle update to receive it.
As for the heated and cooled cupholders, though many scoff at the idea (especially non-Americans who tend to look at us with strange gazes over the whole cupholder thing in the first place), they're a neat feature. If you remember to use them, you don't have to worry about your coffee getting cold or your iced coffee getting warm before you get to where you're going. Just don't expect the cupholders to chill your soda or re-heat your lukewarm latte. They're like having built-in koozies.
Speaking of cooling, a recent heat wave made me long for cooled seats. They're actually available on the 300 and if I was ordering one from the ground up, I'd make sure they were on the feature list, especially with the black interior. However, thanks to remote start, I don't have to worry about that hot sauna feeling when getting in -- at least when I remember to use it.
By the time you read this, the 300 will have gone to the dealer for its second service. Two maintenance visits in 20,000 miles – talk about a departure from the old days of 3000-mile oil changes. While it's there, I'm going to have them try to track down the source of an intermittent rattle coming from the dash.
|Service life||9 mo/17,664 mi|
|Average fuel economy||21.1 mpg|
|CO2 emissions||0.92 lb/mi|
|Energy consumption||160 kW-hr/100mi|
|Maintenance cost||$93.22 (oil change, rotate tires, inspection)|