The redesigned 2008 Chrysler Sebring convertible debuts Nov. 29, 2006, at the Los Angeles Auto Show. The 2008 model marked the first time it was available with a soft or hard top.
Three engines were available: A base 2.4-liter inline-four rated at 173 hp at 6,000 rpm and 166 pound-feet of torque at 4,400 rpm, and a 2.7-liter V-6 with 189 hp and 191 pound-feet of torque (both paired with a four-speed automatic transmission). The third available engine -- a 3.5-liter V-6 rated at 235 hp and 232 pound-feet of torque -- was mated to a six-speed automatic.
The three available power tops -- vinyl, cloth and retractable steel -- used the same mechanical hardware activated by a single switch and dropped in under 30 seconds. They were concealed by a hard tonneau cover.
With more passenger and cargo space than rivals such as the Toyota Camry Solara, Volkswagen Eos and Pontiac G6 convertible, Autoweek predicted the latest Sebring had a solid chance of maintaining Chrysler's "status as king of the midsize drop-top mountain."
For critics, the styling -- featuring the Chrysler Crossfire roadster's grille, quad headlights and multiple hood accent strakes -- was a mixed bag.
The New York Times said the car exuded "the excitement, ferocity and sleek visceral energy of a dozing manatee."
The midsize Sebring family was marketed from 1995 through 2010 with three generations of convertibles, two generations of sedans and two generations of coupes. The coupe shared some styling cues but was mechanically unrelated to the other Sebring models.
The family was introduced in 1995 with the Chrysler Sebring coupe to replace the Chrysler LeBaron coupe. The convertible was introduced in 1996, replacing its LeBaron counterpart. For 2001, both body styles were redesigned, and a sedan was added to replace the Chrysler Cirrus. The coupe was discontinued after 2005.
The redesigned sedan was introduced for 2007, and the convertible the following year. All Sebring models were replaced by the Chrysler 200 sedan for the 2011 model year.