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  • Drew Dowdell
    Drew Dowdell

    Just Launched Chevrolet SS Already Threatened with Extinction

    Chevrolet has sold just 179 copies of their just launched, limited edition SS High Performance Sedan so far, and already the Australian built vehicle is threatened with extinction. ABC News in Australia (no relation to ABC news in the United States) is reporting that Holden is threatening to pull production out of Australia by 2016 if it does not get the government sponsored support package it is angling for. Adding to the pressure is Holden's apparent demand for a Government decision to be made before Christmas.

    Automobile manufacturing in Australia has been on the decline for years. After reaching a peak of 334k in 2007, production has dropped to 224k as of 2011 with further declines since. Ford Australia has already announced their departure in 2016. If Holden ceases production in Australia, it could cost upwards of 50,000 jobs.

    Now Holden and the Australian Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane have denied the report and say talks are continuing.

    "Consultations are continuing in good faith with Australian carmakers, the components industry and workers. The Productivity Commission is continuing its work assessing the Australian automotive industry and will report to the Government. That process is unchanged and will continue," said a spokeswoman for the Industry Minister.

    Holden is responsible for most of the design and production of the Chevrolet SS and Chevrolet Caprice Police Pursuit Vehicle sold in the United States. As a limited edition vehicle selling at base price of $43,475 , Chevy only expects to sell about 3,000 units per year, so expect to pay some additional dealer markup if you are shopping for one of these.... and better head out there soon.

    What do you think? Will we miss the Chevrolet SS in the U.S. or will it be no great loss? Sound off below!

    Source: ABC News / TTAC


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    First off the SS is DOA (Dead on Arrival). Why????? They did not hold to the concept enough to really make this a striking auto in consumers eyes. While you have plenty of power, I do not see this as a differentiator to truly set it as a Niche vehicle.

    Cost are already high to get this auto out of aussy land.

    Second is GM Performance should have built the SS here in America. If they really wanted a family 4 door sedan to excite the masses they should have built it here off one of the existing platforms as an AWD SS. Either the Impala or Malibu so that it had a link to the chevy portfolio.,

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    The SS needs to be built here and directly challenge the 300/Charger twins NOW. No need to build it down under if the market there is already shifting towards FWD. It may well be cheaper to build it here and export the new SS around the world as Holden has done for decades. No need for Chevy to go nearly all FWD appliances (Camaro/Corvette/trucks aside) like Ford has.

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    Holden has made the decision to pull out of Australia as early as 2016, according to senior Government ministers.

    Departure in 2016 does not mean immediate death for SS. And furthermore, the timeline is speculated for the Commodore replacement on Alpha. I think there is a game of chess going on between the two parties.

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    I think only high volume Chevy dealers should be allowed to order this anyway just like the ZR1 corvette. This is not a mass crowd auto and so should be at the largest dealerships as a halo product. Those will find select people who are interested in buying a limited edition auto.

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    No surprise, the GTO was short lived and not successful, the G8 was even shorter lived, and they keep going back the the same well expecting a different result? It was pretty much doomed from the start. Had they put the Impala on a rear drive platform and priced it like a Charger/300 or Genesis sedan they would have had a shot. This SS idea wasn't going to work.

    • Downvote 1

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    No surprise, the GTO was short lived and not successful, the G8 was even shorter lived, and they keep going back the the same well expecting a different result? It was pretty much doomed from the start. Had they put the Impala on a rear drive platform and priced it like a Charger/300 or Genesis sedan they would have had a shot. This SS idea wasn't going to work.

    I see the lack of facts still doesn't inhibit you from posting stuff like this.

    • Upvote 3

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    GTO was on sale for 3 years, and 40,800 units.

    G8 was on sale for 2 years and sold 38,000 units, the last 5,000 or so of those on big discounts once Pontiac was killed.

    The SS may last more than 2 years, but it looks like 3 is it and they won't sell 30,000 of them. This import from Australia idea isn't working.

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    I do not know my specs like a lot of you guys, but this reminds me of the Mercury Marauder that came out in the early 2000's. Even though I do not think that car sold over well, it was kind of a nice car in retrospect and I doubt anyone would be disappointed having bought this new SS. It might not be everything hoped for, but it looks like a nice car to me.

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    *sigh*

    GTO sold 40,800 units in 3 years... in each year they were capped at 18K, so most Pontiac could have moved would have been 54,000. Considering that Pontiac shot themselves in the foot in 2004 by bragging about how much better the 2005 would be... and how dealers hoarded and priced up the cars, selling 40K of 54K is a resounding success.

    The G8 was NOT around for 2 full years. Cars arrived in March of 2008 and the last one was made in June 2009... giving two very truncated "sales years" of 15K and 23K... considering the level of advertising, selling 38K cars in ~16 months during a huge market downturn is doing pretty well. IIRC, it was April 2009 sales in which the G8 was the 6th best selling GM car. In any case, the G8 would also have been limited in production due to Holden's production capability if it was selling at 2007 Grand Prix levels.

    Tyran, the Marauder failed because is was 7 years too late version of the Impala SS and the 4.6 was underwhelming. It suffered from awful advertising (OTOH, the Impala SS was IMHO VERY well advertised) and it made more sense to just buy a used Impala SS.

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    The Alpha platform is now better. The CTS is the size of the G8 now and much much lighter. Even with all the Cadillac fluff adding to the heft, it's a good 200 - 300 lbs lighter. Comparing V6 to V6

    It will be interesting to see what GM does with Alpha going forward, outside of Cadillac. I assume the next Camaro. I do wonder if there is room in Chevy's lineup of vanilla FWD appliances for a RWD sports sedan, though.

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar

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    The Alpha platform is now better. The CTS is the size of the G8 now and much much lighter. Even with all the Cadillac fluff adding to the heft, it's a good 200 - 300 lbs lighter. Comparing V6 to V6

    That may well be, but it hardly excuses wasting an entire generation of very good RWD cars. So many lost opportunities.

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    The Alpha platform is now better. The CTS is the size of the G8 now and much much lighter. Even with all the Cadillac fluff adding to the heft, it's a good 200 - 300 lbs lighter. Comparing V6 to V6

    It will be interesting to see what GM does with Alpha going forward, outside of Cadillac. I assume the next Camaro. I do wonder if there is room in Chevy's lineup of vanilla FWD appliances for a RWD sports sedan, though.

    Could be a Buick RWD coupe as well, I'd expect it to wear the Riviera badge. It would be a nice high end companion to a Verano convertible, Opel Cascada, that is highly likely coming here.

    The SS, if it survives, would likely be rebuilt on Alfa. As the middle east really likes the RWD Caprice/Lumina and they sell the Caprice PPV here, I put the chance of the SS surviving at about 50%.

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    The Alpha platform is now better. The CTS is the size of the G8 now and much much lighter. Even with all the Cadillac fluff adding to the heft, it's a good 200 - 300 lbs lighter. Comparing V6 to V6

    It will be interesting to see what GM does with Alpha going forward, outside of Cadillac. I assume the next Camaro. I do wonder if there is room in Chevy's lineup of vanilla FWD appliances for a RWD sports sedan, though.

    Could be a Buick RWD coupe as well, I'd expect it to wear the Riviera badge. It would be a nice high end companion to a Verano convertible, Opel Cascada, that is highly likely coming here.

    The SS, if it survives, would likely be rebuilt on Alfa. As the middle east really likes the RWD Caprice/Lumina and they sell the Caprice PPV here, I put the chance of the SS surviving at about 50%.

    An NA built Caprice PPV would probably sell a lot better than the imported one also...

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar

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    The Alpha platform is now better. The CTS is the size of the G8 now and much much lighter. Even with all the Cadillac fluff adding to the heft, it's a good 200 - 300 lbs lighter. Comparing V6 to V6

    That may well be, but it hardly excuses wasting an entire generation of very good RWD cars. So many lost opportunities.

    The problem was, and always has been, building them in the US. Was there enough demand to warrant a second Zeta factory in the US? GM thought not. In essence, Sigma and Zeta got consolidated into one better platform rather than running with two. It makes business sense today to simply not continue with Zeta production after the current cars wind down. The current cars will run another 5 years... plenty of time to build up replacements on Alpha or even Alpha 2.

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    The way I see it is that they flubbed every decision they made on Zeta - that is when they actually made a decision instead of tripping over their own thinking. There never was a cohesive. logical, or firm plan for an exceptional platform they spent a billion dollars developing. Everything was over-thought and under-implemented.

    And always oh-so-late.

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    Perhaps. If they utilize the new platform as they should. That has yet to be seen - so far all we have is a Cadillac sedan.

    But there is great value in learning from the mistakes of the past - GM would do well to start such learning.

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    Perhaps. If they utilize the new platform as they should. That has yet to be seen - so far all we have is a Cadillac sedan.

    But there is great value in learning from the mistakes of the past - GM would do well to start such learning.

    2 Cadillac sedans, possibly a Cadillac concept coupe (platform wasn't defined). We're 99% certain Camaro is going on it, Cadillac is getting at least an ATS coupe the mules have already been spied, Buick is probably getting a coupe, and if the Caprice survives, it will probably ride on that too. That's Sedan/Coupe/Convertible (Camaro) right there. The expansion of Opel in Europe even allows for the potential for wagons.

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