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Four-Doored Vette: Chevy's $44,500 SS Sedan

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On: Thu, Jun 6, 2013 at 4:12PM | By: Chris Weiss

Four-Doored Vette: Chevy's $44,500 SS Sedan

The 2014 Chevrolet SS is the sedan for muscle lovers who need a little extra room. Chevy's first performance sedan since 1996, the SS packs a rare combination of room for five and more than 400 hp. Chevy announced a base price of $44,470 this week. That price includes a $995 destination fee.

The SS sedan flew a bit under our radar, thanks to a Daytona debut sandwiched between major auto shows like Detroit and New York. That debut was a shame, because outside of the new Corvette, the SS is one of the most interesting new Chevrolets that we've seen all year. A bit of an odd duck for Chevy, the SS is a product niche that was formerly filled by Pontiac cars like the G8. Of course, it's significantly more powerful and expensive than the 2009 G8 was, given that it comes in only one engine flavor.

The modern muscle car grown up (but not quite grown into middle age crisis mode), the SS is an intriguing choice for those who need a sedan but want some virile power and performance. Usually when someone looks to spend $44K on a car, much of the cash would go toward a luxury badge and premium interior. In the case of the SS, it's directed toward the 415-hp 6.2-liter LS3 small block V8. That engine is matched to a six-speed automatic with steering wheel-mounted TAPshift paddles. Chevy appears so confident that buyers in this niche won't want any luxury or added features, it's offering the car in only one trim with two basic options: power sunroof ($900) and full-size spare tire ($500).

"The all-new SS is engineered for performance enthusiasts who’ve been clamoring for a rear-wheel-drive sedan," said Chris Perry, vice president of Chevrolet Marketing. "Adding the SS to the lineup further solidifies Chevrolet’s position as America’s best-selling performance-car brand and completes a trifecta that includes the all-new 2014Corvette StingrayandCamaro Z/28."

The SS' powertrain is intriguing, as are its 5-second 0-60 mph time, Brembo front brakes, near 50/50 weight distribution, and MacPherson strut front and multi-link independent rear suspension. However, its design is rather ho-hum. A sedan may have trouble being as sporty as a coupe, but Chevy could have definitely made the SS stand out a little bit more. It's almost as if they just decided to throw a Corvette engine into a scratched Impala redesign. It's slightly more athletic than other current Chevy sedans, but it definitely doesn't deserve to be mentioned in the same breadth as the new Corvette or Camaro. Not only does the buyer have to be looking for power over luxury, but he has to not care about the car looking the part. The niche got smaller.

While it's no Cadillac, the SS isn't devoid of interior comforts. It packs a Chevy MyLink color touchscreen infotainment system, color head-up display, Bose premium audio system, and heated and ventilated front seats, among other features. It also comes with some safety technologies, including blind zone alert and lane deparature warning.

The 2014 SS will hit its niche in the fourth quarter of this year.

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