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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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    No surprise, they put so little effort into it. it was a half-hearted, afterthought effort..they didn't even put any effort into naming. Chevy in the US is focused on volume FWD appliances and trucks, not sports sedans.

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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.

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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.

    • Agree 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

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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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    If, probably, maybe.

    OK, two Cadillac sedans and so what?

    Let's even assume the Camaro turns out well.

    I'm still looking for some expansion of choice here, not merely replacing what is with new underpinnings.

    Show me something new and interesting.

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    If, probably, maybe.

    OK, two Cadillac sedans and so what?

    Let's even assume the Camaro turns out well.

    I'm still looking for some expansion of choice here, not merely replacing what is with new underpinnings.

    Show me something new and interesting.

    Buick coupe? Cadillac Coupe?

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    You still probably aren't going to see an El Camino revival, so you may as well give up.

    No kidding.

    Got anything else?

    If, probably, maybe.

    OK, two Cadillac sedans and so what?

    Let's even assume the Camaro turns out well.

    I'm still looking for some expansion of choice here, not merely replacing what is with new underpinnings.

    Show me something new and interesting.

    Buick coupe? Cadillac Coupe?

    Buick coupe maybe, if it ever happens. I'm sick of just about everything Caddy.

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    Maybe I'll get lucky and the next Camaro will be drop-dead gorgeous enough that I can ignore the fact that it's the only offering from GM that might interest me.

    And maybe, Buick will sculpt a Riviera so slick that I'll be able to ignore the fact that it will be automatic-only.

    Or maybe the SS/PPV will survive on Alpha and offer a wagon I have to have.

    And how about a small alpha from Chevy below the Camaro that is a ball to drive into a corner.

    Show me something like that with an MSRP between 30 and 50K.

    Edited by Camino LS6
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    Just a reminder that Alpha can go smaller than the ATS... such a car would most likely be 4-cylinder only, but I would imagine turbos being available.

    I'm quite aware of that, and endorse the idea.

    Hell, at this point I'd settle for a few impressive concepts with production possibilities.

    An analog to the Solstice Coupe with RWD and a manual would get my attention.

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    As of this week, the leashes are off from the Gub'mint and starting Jan 7, GM will have (by far) the youngest leadership team in the industry lead by people who know product rather than accounting.

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

    Not only that, but would have been much cheaper. I don't see any reason why Impala-sized RWD car needs to more than, say, 10% more than the Impala.

    Just a reminder that Alpha can go smaller than the ATS... such a car would most likely be 4-cylinder only, but I would imagine turbos being available.

    No thanks. GM has trouble nowadays building a "full size" car that is comfortable to a big guy, so an ATS test drive would likely end with the use of the jaws-of-life.

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    So, since I'm not all up on the Zeta knowledge, but a HUGE fan of the Caprice/PPV, is there any chance of the PPV spawning off civilian Caprice models in the US? I was just in Atlantic City this weekend for a work holiday party. Saturday I saw at least 2 NJ State Police PPVs and Sunday I caught a glimpse of a PPV in Atlantic City PD guise. I'd drop all desires for a pickup on my next purchase (2014/2015) if GM/Chevrolet offered the Caprice sedan. I am in the minority here in that I actually like the SS Sedan but can't justify spending $45k for a "car" (bad enough the Sierra I want is in this price range now). Any chance I'll see a Caprice LTZ in the showrooms, or is it a pipe dream?

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    So, since I'm not all up on the Zeta knowledge, but a HUGE fan of the Caprice/PPV, is there any chance of the PPV spawning off civilian Caprice models in the US? I was just in Atlantic City this weekend for a work holiday party. Saturday I saw at least 2 NJ State Police PPVs and Sunday I caught a glimpse of a PPV in Atlantic City PD guise. I'd drop all desires for a pickup on my next purchase (2014/2015) if GM/Chevrolet offered the Caprice sedan. I am in the minority here in that I actually like the SS Sedan but can't justify spending $45k for a "car" (bad enough the Sierra I want is in this price range now). Any chance I'll see a Caprice LTZ in the showrooms, or is it a pipe dream?

    Not going to happen, what with the new '14 Impala out.

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    So, since I'm not all up on the Zeta knowledge, but a HUGE fan of the Caprice/PPV, is there any chance of the PPV spawning off civilian Caprice models in the US? I was just in Atlantic City this weekend for a work holiday party. Saturday I saw at least 2 NJ State Police PPVs and Sunday I caught a glimpse of a PPV in Atlantic City PD guise. I'd drop all desires for a pickup on my next purchase (2014/2015) if GM/Chevrolet offered the Caprice sedan. I am in the minority here in that I actually like the SS Sedan but can't justify spending $45k for a "car" (bad enough the Sierra I want is in this price range now). Any chance I'll see a Caprice LTZ in the showrooms, or is it a pipe dream?

    Uh... yes... it's called the Chevrolet SS. http://www.chevrolet.com/ss-sports-sedan.html

    Just why do you think a "Caprice LTZ" outfitted perhaps with a 3.6 LFX V6 but otherwise comparably equipped will be any cheaper?

    Edited by dwightlooi
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    Pipe Dream. Expect GM to put no more effort into these cars.

    Figured that, but wanted to ask just in case I've missed anything. Thanks ;)

    So, since I'm not all up on the Zeta knowledge, but a HUGE fan of the Caprice/PPV, is there any chance of the PPV spawning off civilian Caprice models in the US? I was just in Atlantic City this weekend for a work holiday party. Saturday I saw at least 2 NJ State Police PPVs and Sunday I caught a glimpse of a PPV in Atlantic City PD guise. I'd drop all desires for a pickup on my next purchase (2014/2015) if GM/Chevrolet offered the Caprice sedan. I am in the minority here in that I actually like the SS Sedan but can't justify spending $45k for a "car" (bad enough the Sierra I want is in this price range now). Any chance I'll see a Caprice LTZ in the showrooms, or is it a pipe dream?

    Not going to happen, what with the new '14 Impala out.

    I am a fan of the 2014 Impala, and if I knew I could live with a "car" as my daily driver I'd likely be in one already. Wife is not a fan of the new Impala, so I see no way of talking her into one at this time.

    So, since I'm not all up on the Zeta knowledge, but a HUGE fan of the Caprice/PPV, is there any chance of the PPV spawning off civilian Caprice models in the US? I was just in Atlantic City this weekend for a work holiday party. Saturday I saw at least 2 NJ State Police PPVs and Sunday I caught a glimpse of a PPV in Atlantic City PD guise. I'd drop all desires for a pickup on my next purchase (2014/2015) if GM/Chevrolet offered the Caprice sedan. I am in the minority here in that I actually like the SS Sedan but can't justify spending $45k for a "car" (bad enough the Sierra I want is in this price range now). Any chance I'll see a Caprice LTZ in the showrooms, or is it a pipe dream?

    Uh... yes... it's called the Chevrolet SS. http://www.chevrolet.com/ss-sports-sedan.html

    Just why do you think a "Caprice LTZ" outfitted perhaps with a 3.6 LFX V6 but otherwise comparably equipped will be any cheaper?

    Well, for the SS I would not pay $45k - I mean I like it a lot and all, but I was a G8 fan (short wheelbase) and so far not a huge fan of the SS (got to see one out in the real world first I guess). As for the Caprice/PPV, I love the longer frame and body than the shorter SS and would not have an issue spending $41-42K for a loaded Caprice LTZ with the 6.2L V8 :smilewide: The Impala LTZ's I checked out this summer stickered for $37-$39k for the ones I'd want, so I'd be willing to go up a couple grand for a Caprice.

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    I'd love to see a Caprice LTZ V8 to compete w/ the Chrysler 300C, but alas, the market in general and GM has shifted to FWD vanilla... :(

    <rant>

    GM and Chrysler are the only American companies left that have a variety of cars that I can see myself actually considering in my next car shopping round..Challenger, Charger, 300, Grand Cherokee...and GM has the Camaro, SS and Cadillacs (the problem w/ Cadillac is I can't see spending $40-50k on a compact w/ a 4cyl)

    Ford is a dead end except for the Mustang.

    Alas, today the core of the market is disposable FWD cars and CUVs that I have no interest in...dull appliances for the non-enthusiast masses. I feel old.

    </rant>

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
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    If it is just a matter of price, maybe the question is why GM doesn't import an Chevrolet SS with cloth seats, no navigation, no premium audio, smaller allow wheels, cheaper tires, etc. and sell it for $35K. I am sure they can, there are Commodores outfitted like that. They just think that the SS's market is niche enough and trying to deck out a few different trims simply isn't worth the effort.

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    Saw this today on Motor Authority, speculation about an NA-built NG SS on 'Zeta II' (Alpha?)...no idea how accurate it is, but interesting..

    Chevrolet’s new SS muscle sedan has just arrived on the market but production of the car will last only until the end of 2017--at the latest--since the only place in the world it is produced at, Holden’s plant in Australia, has been confirmed to shut by the same date. Could the SS end up a one-hit wonder like two previous Holden-built cars sold here, the Pontiac GTO and G8?

    Not likely, says a new report.

    Car and Driver is reporting that a successor is planned, based on a heavily updated version of the Zeta platform found in the current SS (the most recent update was only a minor one). This updated platform, code-named Zeta II, is said to be used for both an SS successor and a new sports wagon that successor will spawn. The wagon has previously been hinted at by General Motors product chief Mark Reuss and may end up reviving Chevy’s Nomad nameplate.

    A successor for Chevy’s Caprice PPV, which is essentially a tamer, long-wheelbase version of the current SS, is also said to be planned. While the Caprice PPV has proven popular amongst police testers, the fact that it’s made outside North America has limited its sales success. That won’t be the case for its successor, as Car and Driver is reporting that it and the other cars based on the Zeta II platform will be built in North America.

    When might we start seeing these cars? Production of the first examples is expected to start as early as 2015.

    For performance fans in Australia, the successor to the SS may be offered locally as a replacement for the current V-8-powered versions of the Holden Commodore, since the next generation of the beloved Aussie sedan will be moving to a front-wheel-drive platform.

    Stay tuned for an update.

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