Engine:BBC 572 cu. in.
Fuel Type:Gasoline 93 octane
For Sale By:Private Seller
Exterior Color: Blue
Interior Color: Black
Number of Cylinders: 8
Trim: 2 Door Coupe
Drive Type: RWD
Augusta, New Jersey, United States
Not including the women and men who built it, the 2014 Chevrolet SS has only been seen in person by a piddling number of people - fewer humans than would fill the gymnasium at a high school volleyball game. Not including the men and women who built it, no one has driven it. Even so, it is already saddled with two controversies: the way it looks and the way it shifts.
First to that shifting. Did we love the last Americanized Holden, the awesomely sportsome Pontiac G8 GXP, and its six-speed manual? Of course. Do we wish the SS came with a six-speed manual? Of course. But we'd like a toboggan to come with a manual transmission. We'd put a manual transmission on a weasel if we could because we're just wired that way; if it moves, it should come with a stick and a clutch. Or at least the option.
Let's climb down off the ledge, though. We haven't driven the SS and we have no idea how good (or not) the automatic is. And the Hobson's Choice in transmissions when it comes to sport sedans like the BMW M5, Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG and Jaguar XFR-S and, oh yeah, cars-that-really-should-have-manuals like the Audi R8 and Nissan GT-R and Porsche 918 and every single Lamborghini and Ferrari, for instance, hasn't stopped us from enjoying what is clearly the gruesome, dual-clutched demise of Western automotive civilization. Because in spite of our ululations at the dying of the six-speed light, we understand.
Where else would you expect the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray to show up first? Although this time it isn't exactly in Jay Leno's Garage, Leno instead playing an away game at Brown's Classic Auto in Scottsdale, Arizona. Nor does Leno drive the car, instead taking an 11-minute walkaround of the new American sports car with General Motors design head Ed Welburn, the same man who recently brought by a string of classic Corvettes to the talk show host's California compound.
It is, admittedly, a love-fest for the American sports car now featuring 450 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque, but one that also features admissions about previous Corvette seats like "they were kinda rough," and the explanation that labeling the coupe "Stingray" means not having to call it "the base Corvette." On top of that, Welburn also explains the proper application of the term "dashboard." You can watch it all in the video below.
Full Disclosure: in my younger days, I loved nothing more than tormenting passengers with my behind-the-wheel hijinks. Once, after a particularly artful handbrake turn on a two-lane at around 50 miles per hour, I left one backseat occupant crying in their own lap. This isn't necessarily something to be proud of, but it gives you a glimpse into why it is that I find this ad from Pepsi so damn disappointing. The premise is beautiful. Take NASCAR legend Jeff Gordon, give him a disguise and set him loose upon some unsuspecting used car dealer. Hilarity ensues.
Except that this Pepsi Max commercial is so obviously staged, it can't help but feel like some ham-fisted marketing fail. From the strategically placed aftermarket cupholder mounted mid-dash for the hidden camera to the fact that the supposed dealer Camaro is displayed as a 2009 model (Hint: Chevrolet didn't make any), this clip is about as organic as a Twinkie. Still, we would never turn down a chance to watch Gordon thrash on a rental-spec coupe - only problem is, he probably didn't even do the driving himself. Check it out below.