During its existence, Pontiac created some of GM’s most beloved and feared performance models. As if it wasn’t enough that the Tempest-based GTO in the ’60s set the bar for door-slammer aggression, the Pontiac nameplate did it again from ’04-06 with the Holden-based GTO that put the General’s LS motor series into a whole new arena of street fighting.
While Pontiac never seemed to have issue with making stoplight warriors out of their more midsized coaches, when it came to carrying this tried-and-true heritage of brute performance over to the luxury sedan segment, one of Pontiac’s greatest achievements was the horsepower oriented variant of the Commodore-based G8 produced from ’08-09, the GXP.
GM of North America president, Mark Reuss was just as hurt as anybody over Pontiac’s demise in 2009 and since that time, Reuss has felt the empty space caused by the General’s lack of a performance sedan segment. “Those were the worst days of my job,” says Reuss of working for GM during the mid-’09 sales year. “It was terrible.”
But GM’s Australian sibling Holden continues to offer the Commodore sedan, and it’s the Commodore VF’s globally-recognized Zeta platform, currently the platform for Camaro, that may just give Chevy and indeed Vette enthusiasts a glimpse of hope for the 2014 model year.
Chevy's SS sedan for 2014 will make use of the Holden Commodore's internationally-recognized Zeta platform, currently used in the Camaro.
That’s because Reuss and GM have up their sleeves an idea for a 4-door sled that will essentially serve, according to Reuss, as Chevy’s sedan version of the Corvette, the ’14 SS sedan. It will be powered by the upcoming LT1 mill that will inevitably be stuffed into not only the C7, but possibly the GNX that has been rumored to be part of Buick’s near future.
The same engineering team from General that developed the 5th-Gen ZL1 also worked to refine the Zeta platform for the SS, helping to reinforce Chevy’s famed “Super Sport” trademark. Mark Reuss wanted to make sure that the ’14 SS stayed true to the name.
“The SS has a lot of meaning. You know, Chevelles with cowl induction and all the stuff we used to have. Along through history it was sometimes done wrong when it was just a trim package,” explains Reuss.
High performance sedans, especially one that piggyback off of the Vette marque may just become the hot new auto market in the next few sales years to come. Do you think that Chevy’s new SS will be a smart buy when you’re in the market for luxury performance?!