Comparing the upcoming Chevy SS and their last RWD sport sedan, the Impala SS
Last week, Chevrolet finally revealed pictures of the all-new SS sedan – the first car in the brand’s history to wear simply the “SS” title on its nameplate. Normally, Chevy will throw the badge, which stands for “Super Sport,” on the performance version of a preexisting model already featured in the brand’s stable. Often, this has been a wise move for the company, as the name has been attached to several generations of competition-slaughtering Camaros and Chevelles. But the SS label hasn’t always necessarily meant extra performance, as it essentially equated to a spoiler and a fancy paint job on some cars – like the late, not-so-great Cobalt sold over the past decade.
This new model, however, isn’t a performance variant of a sedan already in the Chevrolet lineup. In fact, it doesn’t even have that fancy a paint-job: This otherwise bland looking sedan is strictly business, featuring the same 6.2 liter V8 currently under the hood of the 2013 Corvette, meaning this beast is all about speed. According to Chevy, given the light weight of the new sedan, it should be able to reach 60 MPH in under five seconds.
The new SS was officially unveiled at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway the weekend of February 16, as this is the model that will represent Chevrolet on the tracks for the 2014 NASCAR season. That’s right: GM is actually planning on selling a car that bears some resemblance to the RWD speed demon that does laps wearing the Chevy badge on next year’s cup circuit, unlike almost every other model in NASCAR.
This car represents Chevrolet’s first RWD sport sedan in more than 17 years, and their most impressive one in decades. Not only is it faster than its predecessor, the 1994-1996 Impala SS, but it also has a much more sports-oriented look all around.
That isn’t to say that the last RWD sport sedan offered by Chevy was any slouch. Far from it, in fact, as the Impala SS was probably one of the best full-size sedans of its generation.
Like the new SS, the Impala had a standard leather interior with plenty of luxury accents and limited paint options to give it an “exclusive” look compared to the mainstream version of the car, the Chevy Caprice. GM was taking a big gamble when they revived the Impala name for this sport sedan, as the general public still held a lot of reverence for the badge, and it had a lot of valuable “street cred,” being referenced in numerous songs over the years.
This model did not disappoint Impala enthusiasts, as it too had the same V8 engine found in that year’s Corvette under the hood and got an impressive 0-60 mph time of only 7.1 seconds. Best of all, like the old Impalas, this model was without a doubt a boat, and could make good speed while holding a ship’s-worth of cargo within its hatches.
Chevy took too much advantage of the good work they had done resurrecting the Impala name when they switched it over to the badge for the company’s flagship large sedan – a car that was a hit among fleets and rental companies, but only a cheap alternative for the average consumer.
Although Chevy has yet to introduce pricing for the new SS, it won’t be long before you too could be behind the wheel of the same car that your favorite NASCAR driver rides around Daytona. Do you think Chevy has a hit on their hands with the new SS? Leave your thoughts below: