V-8 Chevrolet SS coming to U.S. as 2014 model

May 18, 2012
V-8 Chevrolet SS coming to U.S. as 2014 model
By MELISSA BURDEN / The Detroit News
Chevy performance lovers have a reason to grin: The iconic brand said Thursday it next year will bring to the United States a new V-8 rear-wheel-drive performance sedan.

It marks the first time in 17 years Chevy has offered its U.S. buyers a V-8 rear-wheel-drive sedan.

The public will get a glimpse of the car at some point before its debut at the Daytona 500 in February. That’s where General Motors Co. will race it as its next NASCAR Sprint Cup entry, replacing the Impala.

“Since the Caprice went away in 1996, there have been enthusiasts clamoring for us to bring back a rear-wheel-drive V-8 sedan to the Chevrolet lineup,” said Monte Doran, a Chevrolet spokesman.

The SS or Super Sport package is based on the next-generation Holden Commodore, produced by GM in Australia.

It will not be a civilian version of the Chevy Caprice PPV, a long-wheel-based version of the Commodore that is tailored for police forces. The SS will be similar to the Pontiac G8, which was built in Australia and sold briefly in the U.S. until the Pontiac brand was axed.

The new Chevrolet will be the latest domestic model to race for the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup. Earlier this year, crosstown rival Ford Motor Co. revealed the 2013 Ford Fusion Sprint Cup car and Chrysler Group LLC’s Dodge and SRT Motorsports unveiled a new 2013 Dodge Charger for Sprint Cup competition.

The new Chevy most likely will compete against the Dodge Charger SRT8, analysts say.

Dave Sullivan, manager of product analysis for AutoPacific Inc., doesn’t expect GM to sell more than 30,000 of the SS-badged vehicles a year. Nor does he expect it will take away sales from the popular Camaro.

“It’s another vehicle to get people in the door. They’re not expecting to sell very many of them,” he said.

“This is a conversation piece. It’s going to be their halo for NASCAR.”

GM has used the Super Sport badge on high-performance Chevy models over the years. It first appeared in 1957 on a prototype Corvette racer, though an SS wasn’t available on a production car until the 1961 Impala.

“As a passionate race fan and performance enthusiast, I am thrilled that Chevrolet will deliver a true rear-wheel-drive NASCAR race car in the SS that is closely linked to the performance sedan that will be available for sale,” Mark Reuss, president of GM North America, said in a statement.

It will be available in limited quantities beginning in late 2013.

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