Chrysler, meet Carhartt. Carhartt, meet Chrysler. Although the two firms first partnered in late 2012 to concoct a line of clothing inspired by Chrysler's "Imported from Detroit" taglines, they've now joined forces to help create the new 2013 Chrysler 200 S Special Edition sedan you see here.
We know what you're thinking – isn't this pairing little unusual, given Chrysler's upmarket aspirations (witness the 300 John Varvatos Edition) and Carhartt's reputation for making coats, overalls, boots, and other work gear favored by day laborers and tradesmen. Chrysler officials claim they don't see much of a discrepancy. Both brands have long-standing roots in Detroit and, according to press materials, "celebrate a 'never-say-die' attitude and the value of hard work."
At a recent luncheon with the Automotive Press Association, Chrysler brand president and CEO Saad Chehab went a step further, suggesting "Chrysler is not necessarily a luxury brand," but instead one for hard-working people seeking style and value. If nothing else, that applies to the current 200, which is more of a value-oriented sedan than an all-out, opulent luxury sedan.
From afar, the 200S Special Edition looks like most other 200 S sedans. Projector headlamps boast a dark surround, although the 200 S' glossy black grille is replaced with one boasting a gloss black mesh insert, floating Chrysler insignia, and a platinum chrome surround. A similar finish is used on the fog lamp spears located in the lower front fascia, along with the molding accent that runs along the car's beltline. Special Edition models roll on unique matte black 18-inch wheels instead of the S' aluminum wheels with black pockets. Although the basic S appearance package is offered on both four- and six-cylinder 200 sedan models, the 200 S Special Edition is only paired with the 283-hp 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 and a six-speed automatic transmission.
Chrysler and Carhartt design teams primarily partnered on the Special Edition's interior appointments. The result? The 200 S Special Edition's seating is wrapped in a water-resistant black fabric picked by Carhartt, and accented with Carhartt's trademark triple stitch pattern in diesel gray. Matching stitching is used to accent the steering wheel, armrests, and center console. Air vents, gear shift, cup holders, and steering wheel buttons are also doused in a glossy black finish.
Want one? Pricing begins at $28,870 (excluding destination), and production at Chrysler's assembly plant in Sterling Heights, Michigan, commences in the second quarter of 2013.
For you trivia buffs: no, this isn't Carhartt's first liason with an automaker. Ford partnered with Carhartt in 2011 to offer bib-like seat covers for the F-150 full-size pickup truck.