It’s not too late to have this Camaro with four doors in your driveway.
I’m a fan of 4-door sports cars. I like to drive and I appreciate power, a tightened suspension and seats that hug you as you drive. But, I need to have my kids and dog along, I run a lot of errands and I haul a lot of stuff, so a car with four doors and plenty of trunk room is a must. A 4-door sports car lets me have fun while *thrilling* my back seat passengers.
I was excited to test drive the 2017 Chevrolet SS, a classic American muscle car with four doors and plenty of creature comforts. I’m glad I got the chance; soon this car will be a thing of the past (for the time being anyhow). Chevrolet will stop production of the Chevrolet SS four-door performance sedan at the end of this year because it is closing the Holden plant where it is built, ironically, in Australia.
Who this car is for
- Singles, couples or small families
- Drivers who need a four door car but like an exciting drive experience
- Buyers who want the current collectable American muscle car
- Drivers who want a performance car experience
- Buyers who may occasionally drive on a track
- Buyers who want a performance car that comes standard with all the necessary goodies
What it Costs
This might be the most thrilling part of the Chevy SS: everything in this car is standard. No upgrades, low-end models or dumbed-down entry-level phonies. There are only a few reasonably priced add-ons that are mostly cosmetic:
- Base price: $46,625
- Sun roof: $900
- Rear spoiler: $300
- Side air vents: $200
- Black out grille: $300
- Destination charge: $995
- Price of the model we drove: About $50,815
Consider also the cash back incentives offered right now, Chevrolet’s recent 20% off MSRP promotion on many models (if they are not offering it, ask for it) and the fact that auto sales are down across the board right now, and you could walk off the lot with this car for about $40,000. That makes for a pretty nice investment in a soon-to-be-classic.
A Camaro with four doors? Pretty much
While the SS doesn’t have the distinct styling or exact engine of the Camaro SS, its power is close to the Camaro’s: The Chevy SS’s 6.0L V8 engine produces 415 horsepower while the Camaro SS puts out 455 horsepower.
Both are sort of like driving a rocket.
But the Chevrolet SS is everything that you can’t have in a Camaro: there’s plenty of headroom so no one feels claustrophobic; the seats are wider and more comfortable, it’s easier to get in and out of the front and back seats, and there’s ample cargo space for your stuff (note: if you buy this car, opt for the cargo net; your milk and tomatoes deserve a seat belt, too).
I’ll have a side order of badass, please
One of the things I liked about the Chevrolet SS is at first, it appears to be an unassuming sedan, classic American in style with squared off corners and a front fender that dips to meet the road. But a closer look hints at the muscle under the hood: a blacked out front grille, side air vents, a rear spoiler and the large, wide-set wheels drop cues that this car is more at home on a track than in a traffic jam.
Performance means luxury, too
It used to be that a performance car was devoid of luxury; you had to choose between being pampered or a thrilling drive experience. No longer. Climb into the Chevy SS and you see appointments more in line with Cadillac than Chevrolet (or really, in line with the current ad campaign in which real people exclaim “Wow, this is a Chevy?”).
Standard on the SS are heated and cooled leather seats, suede accents on the doors and dashboard, a quiet ride, head up display, 4G LTE wifi, a Bose premium sound system and a magnetic suspension system which evens out the ride.
The SS still has a mechanical cockpit feel, with buttons to control everything on the center console, a hefty gear shift and gauges and information clusters neatly arranged, all framed by gleaming chrome accents.
All the performance tools you’ll need, and then some
All the SS’s features aren’t for show. Look a little deeper and you find features to enhance performance. Features include:
- Head up display so that when you’re hitting high speed on the highway, you don’t have to look down to know it; it’s projected on the windshield
- Three drive modes—touring for everyone’s comfort, sport and performance, which turns off traction control—because you should save your performance skills for just the right road
- Paddle shifters because even on demure back roads you can have a little more fun
- An available 6-speed manual transmission (yay)
- Park assist self parking mode
- Brembo performance brakes
- Magnetic ride control, which smoothes out the ride and limits the jostle factor
The end of this model makes me a little sad
The SS designation in this car carries on the classic Super Sport tradition which was first introduced in 1961. The SS has graced many of GM’s top performance cars, mostly two-door coupes such as the Chevelle and the Camaro (though the Malibu and the Impala both once carried the SS designation, too). That Chevy would add the SS trim to one of its sedans is impressive; they understand that those of us who like to drive are also realists: we can’t do car seats, school drop off or a family trip to Grandma’s house in a two door coupe. Add luxuries and driver enhancements, and the SS is truly a driver’s car, not just a 4-door sports car, which lets me have my drive and my life, too. And that’s why I’m a fan.
What we loved
- A powerful four door sports sedan
- Nearly everything available on this car is standard
- Room for everyone and all our stuff—fits as much luggage and golf clubs in the trunk as the rear of a large SUV
- Three drive modes
- Available in a 6-speed manual transmission
- Head up display
- Luxurious interior touches including suede details
- One USB and one 12V power port in the center arm rest—and the USB port is rimmed in white, making it easy to see
- Bose premium sound
- Chevrolet’s MyLink touch screen, apps, OnStar and 4G LTE wifi (YAY)
- Heated and cooled seats
- Top safety systems are standard: Blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, forward collision prevention and cross traffic alert
What you need to know
- Fuel economy: 14 MPG city/22 highway; we averaged about 18 MPG
- Premium fuel recommended
- Interior only available in black
- It’s going out of production, so order soon or you may be limited to models available on dealers lots
- Rear seats are comfortable but not hugely roomy
- Seats 5 but more comfortable for 4
- Trunk space is ample; we fit four suitcases, tote bags and a set of golf clubs
- Our child car seat was easy to install