Apparently it’s Chevrolet week here at RFD. We just uncovered the best automotive comeback no one is talking about (hint, it’s Chevy) and we just had a 2016 Impala 2LZ land in our driveway for testing. This got me thinking, what else about Chevy have we not noticed? Clearly, it’s the SS sedan. A car that, based on sales figures, nobody has noticed. But how, why, can a 6.2L V8, RWD, sedan this handsome not get noticed? Well, a complete lack of marketing could be a factor. While the more mainstream Impala and Malibu get featured often in ads, the SS has been left to sit in the back of the showroom, likely puffing out it’s pecs and sucking in its gut when cute girls walk by as if to say “hey, I’m a good catch, my Mom say so”. More on why it’s a fantastic catch below. Another factor could be the Aussie Curse, an unfortunate trifecta-of-fail that includes RWD V8 cars like the Pontiac GTO and G8 that came before. And, much like those cars, the SS is actually pretty amazing. So should you buy an SS, and if so, should you buy used, or new?
A New SS
It’s not even featured all that well on Chevy’s website. If you go in looking for a “car” you are greeted with everything from the Spark to the Volt. Oh hey, look at that, I get it. So, unless you are looking for “performance” models, you won’t find it. Click on that tab and the SS sedan is there, beneath the Camaro and Corvette. Good company to be sure, but I’m starting to see why they aren’t getting sold. Make it to the right place on chevrolet.com and you’ll find out some specs. Impressive specs.
- 6.2L V8 – 415hp, 415 ft-lbs. torque
- Brembo brakes with 4-piston 14″ rotors in front and 4-piston 14.2″ rotors in the rear
- Quad-tipped dual-mode exhaust
- Standard third-generation Magnetic Ride Control™ with Tour, Sport and Performance settings
It’s also got a lot of tech stuff that you find on other GM models including Chevy’s MyLink audio/video system, OnStar (including RemoteLink which allows you to lock/unlock and remotely start your SS), 4G LTE Wi-Fi connection, Head-Up Display and Automatic Parking Assist. So beyond it’s cracking V8, this Holden-built sedan is a legit daily driver with the same new fangled tech you find in cars like the Buick Regal GS.
But how much will it cost, is that why nobody is buying it you ask? MSRP starts at $46,575 which isn’t bad for what you get. A new BMW M3 sedan is smaller in almost all measurements (including weight unfortunately) and will run you an additional $18,000 or so. Sure, it’s got 10 more hp, and it weighs the better part of two hefty passengers (400lbs) less (make sure you have your M3 driving coworker take the lunch crew with them, and you’ve got a shot) but for $18K, you can bolt on some additional power. Plus, with its traditional manual gearbox and big V8, you won’t care that the BMW is faster. When you’re rowing through gears and the sonorous exhaust (aftermarket, since you can afford it) is blaring its mid range sounds, all is well in the world. It’s damn near $40,000 cheaper than GM’s other 6.2L super sedan, the Cadillac CTS-V. Sure, that’s supercharged, but for that price gap, you can buy some forced induction. Or a whole other car, even a used CTS-V to go along with your SS.
So a new SS is good value for money. But wait til you see the used SSs.
A Used SS
This is where things get crazy. What if I told you (you just heard Morpheus from The Matrix, didn’t you?) that you could get a used 2015 SS sedan, with a 6spd manual for under $40,000? Here’s one with 7200 miles, that’s pretty much new, for $39,900.
Heck, a new one is $46K you’re saying, that’s not that amazing. OK, if you can deal with an automatic, let’s go back a model year. 2014 SS sedans are damn cheap. Here’s a 2014 with under 20,000 miles for under $32,000.
Go Buy One
So to answer the question, why is no one buying the Chevrolet SS, they don’t make many of them for one. Holden is a long way from the US and it can’t be inexpensive to import this in from Australia. The aforementioned lack of marketing, something we sadly saw with the GTO and G8, isn’t helping. But this is a fantastic car, we hope to add one to our press garage in the near future to give you a real-world review. I am in the market for a $40K’ish, fast, RWD, daily driver sedan and while Alfa Romeo’s new Giulia is on my radar, this SS keeps revving it’s big V8 in my daydreams. If you can’t swing a new one, the used market is fairly flush with great, low mileage options. Go take a look, and then send us a burnout video of your SS once you realize how much value for money this car is and buy one.
All images chevrolet.com and cars.com
I’d drive one. Here’s some great insight on the economics and history behind this car: https://dailykanban.com/2013/11/why-gm-isnt-trying-to-sell-the-chevy-ss-and-why-it-matters/