Chrysler Concorde is First Produced
The Chrysler Concorde is a large four-door, full-size, front wheel drive sedan produced by Chrysler from 1993 to 2004.
It replaced the Chrysler Fifth Avenue on the lineup. One of Chrysler's 3 original Chrysler LH platform models derived from the American Motors/Renault-designed Eagle Premier, it was related to the Dodge Intrepid, Chrysler LHS, Chrysler New Yorker, and the Eagle Vision. It was on Car and Driver magazine's Ten Best list for 1993 and 1994. Like all LH-body cars, the Chrysler Concorde had only an automatic transmission.
The "First Generation" Design was based on the exterior design of the 1987 concept Lamborghini Portofino. The Portofino set in motion Chrysler's decision to produce a production sedan with the Portofino's revolutionary design, called "cab-forward". The cab-forward design was characterized by the long, low-slung windshield and relatively short overhangs. The wheels where effectively pushed to the corners of the car, creating a much larger passenger cabin than the contemporaries of the time.
Although American Motors' Eagle Premier (and Dodge Monaco) was discontinued by Chrysler after the 1992 model year, the new Concorde's packaging was derived from the Premier, and all the suspension and drivetrain development mules were Premiers. Other design features found their way into the Chrysler LH platform, most notably the longitudinal engine layout, a hallmark of Renault's front-wheel-drive designs. This design allowed Chrysler to lower the hoodline, made maintenance/servicing simpler, and tightened the car's turning diameter. Other notable achievements included the Center for Auto Safety ranking the 1993 Concorde as superior in crashworthiness after testing it at 35 miles per hour (56.3 km/h) into a wall.
The "Second Generation" design was introduced in 1996 as the Chrysler LHX Concept Car. This concept vehicle had large 20" wheels, a centrally located instrument cluster and a closed-circuit television system within the windshield pillars replacing conventional rear view mirrors. The wheelbase was expanded to 124 inches (3,100 mm) to allow for rear passenger supplement restraints, rear occupant entertainment center and storage compartment.
The first generation of the Concorde debuted at the 1992 North American International Auto Show in Detroit as a 1993 model. It debuted as a single, well-equipped model that was priced at US$18,341. The first generation lasted until 1997; the Concorde was completely redesigned for 1998. The Concorde Limited, which was 4 inches (102 mm) longer than the standard Concorde, debuted in 2002 to replace the nearly identical Chrysler LHS. The Concorde, along with the Intrepid, saw its last year of production in 2004. The Chrysler 300M (which replaced the Eagle Vision in 1999) was also discontinued that year. The Chrysler 300 replaced the Concorde in 2004 as a 2005 model.
1994: For this year, the touring suspension became standard. Also, base engines gained 8 hp (6 kW), and a front bench seat became available. Power steering added more assist, to reduce turning effort for parking but delivered greater feel at higher speeds. The 3.3 liter engine had 153 hp in 1993 and 161 hp in the following years of the first generation. Both 3.3 liter engines were rated at 18/21/26 MPG.
1995: Improvements made to the transaxle, a modification to the optional remote keyless entry system and the addition of 'thumb-touch' acceleration and cancel features, placed on the steering wheel spokes, to the cruise control. Later 1995 models were produced with sheet metal front fenders, which replaced the composite fenders on earlier models to improve structural integrity.
The "Pentastar" logo was replaced by the Chrysler wreath on the grille, horn pad, and various other places (except the keyless entry key fob and keys, which still had the old "Pentastar" logo).
1996: The Concorde gained two distinguished trim levels for 1996: lower-level LX and higher-level LXi. Extra sound insulation and revised structural engineering promised to make the Concorde quieter. Sheet metal front fenders added for 1996 and later on all models as part of the structural upgrade.
1997: The only major change for this year was that on the base LX model, the 3.3 L V6 was dropped as the standard engine.
All of the 1st generation 3.5 liter engines were rated at 217 hp with 16/24 city/hwy mpg.
1998: The Concorde was completely redesigned for the 1998 model year. Body shells were designed to be stronger and stiffer, as well as incorporating double-shear suspension mounts and integrated side impact protection.
1999: Suspension revisions were the major change for 1999; it was softened to enhance ride comfort and reduce road noise. Thicker carpeting was installed inside, and a new standard cargo net went into the trunk. The LXi package added a CD player and Chrysler's Sentry Key theft-deterrent system, which disabled the ignition unless the proper key was used to start the engine.
2000: For this year, a sunroof could be installed on the base model as well as the upscale LXi. The Concorde also earned additional suspension changes designed to provide a quieter, smoother ride. Tires grew to 16 in for the LX, to match those of the LXi. The LXi edition gained standard speed-sensitive, variable-assist steering, as well as an optional 4-disc in-dash CD changer.
2001: Optional front side airbags and a 3-point safety belt for the rear seat's middle position were added for 2001. The LX's 22D option package now included alloy wheels. Also, the LXi's optional Infinity sound system gained steering wheel-mounted controls.
2002: Adopting the body of the discontinued Chrysler LHS, a trim level was added, the hyper-luxury Limited for 2002, which featured 17-inch wheels and a "high output" 3.5L V6 engine with 250 horsepower. At midyear, Limited models got an optional Pro-Am Edition Group that included 2-tone leather upholstery, unique interior trim, matching chrome rimmed spare tire, a set of Taylor Made golf clubs (irons only), a special leather/suede Chrysler golf bag, exterior 'Pro-Am' appliques on the exterior rear windows, and a 'Pro-Am' trunk organizer for holding the clubs and other golf paraphernalia.
2003: For 2003 no major changes were made except the optional 4-disc in-dash CD changer was replaced with the optional 6-disc in-dash CD changer.
2004: The Concorde's last year. For 2005, the Concorde was replaced by the Chrysler 300.
The evolution of Chrysler's pride had evolved since 1993 when Concorde had been introduced. The first generation Concorde introduced to the car buyers the pleasure derived from having a roomy interior. For Chrysler Concorde, not only does the design matter but the features embodied in the vehicle which provide the ultimate satisfaction and delivers the solid and optimum performance much to the delight of every Concorde enthusiast. The resurgence enjoyed by Chrysler's fleet has been more powered up by the debut of the redesigned Chrysler Concorde in 1998.
Being Chrysler's premium family sedan, Concorde flaunts impressive features instilled in its three trims: the LX, LXi, and the Limited. Tracing the driving performance of its corporate twin, the Dodge Intrepid and its cousin, the Chrysler LHS and 300M, Chrysler Concorde obviously performs well especially with three powerful V6 engines installed in its trims. Aside from its eye-catching styling and worthy features, Chrysler Concorde prides itself of its smooth handling, driving capability, top-caliber Chrysler Concorde parts, pleasurable ride and efficient performance.
Chrysler redesigned its mainstream front-wheel-drive, full-size sedan for 1998, adopting a markedly more dramatic appearance that was highlighted by a Ferrari-like grille. Similar to Chrysler's 300M and LHS (introduced during 1998), the Concorde also was closely related under the skin to the Dodge Intrepid. Two new V6 engines were available. Base LX models got a 200-horsepower, dual-overhead-cam 2.7-liter V6. A 225-horsepower, 3.2-liter single-cam engine went into Concordes with the upscale LXi package. A 4-speed automatic transmission was standard. Antilock braking was optional, or included with the LXi package. Traction control came the same way: standard on LXi, optional on LX. Wheelbase remained at 113 inches, but the front-drive chassis was extensively modified. Overall length grew by 7.5 inches. Weight dropped by nearly a hundred pounds, due to the use of aluminum for the rear suspension, hood, and both new engines. Concordes might have either 5- or 6-passenger seating, because front bucket seats were standard but a front bench was optional. Dual front airbags were standard. Competitors included the Buick LeSabre, Oldsmobile Eighty Eight and LSS, Pontiac Bonneville, and Toyota Avalon.