Although it is known that Chromohalobacter salexigens DSM 3043 has the necessary genetic information to achieve the degradation of aromatic hydrocarbons, until now there is a lack of studies concerning the adaptative response of C. salexigens DSM 3043 to saturated and aromatic hydrocarbons. C. salexigens DSM 3043 was able to tolerate 1%, 5%, 10% (v/v) saturated monoaromatic and polyaromatic hydrocarbons. Monoaromatic hydrocarbons, characterized by a logarithm of the partition coefficient of the hydrocarbon in a mixture of octanol and water (log POW) between 2.14 and 3.14, were more toxic for C. salexigens DSM 3043 cells, if compared with polyaromatic and saturated hydrocarbons with log POW between 3.31 and 8.62. C. salexigens DSM 3043 was able to use as single source of carbon 1%, 5%, 10% (v/v) saturated or polyaromatic hydrocarbons and 1% (v/v) monoaromatic hydrocarbons (except benzene). A high sensitivity of this bacterial strain to the presence of 1% (v/v) benzene was observed. Saturated, polyaromatic and in particular monoaromatic hydrocarbons induced both cellular (cell viability, cell hydrophobicity) and molecular (protein profile, DNA) modifications in C. salexigens DSM 3043. The modifications induced by hydrocarbons in cells of C. salexigens DSM 3043 differ according to the nature of the hydrophobic substrate, its concentration and culture conditions.