Modern Chevy SSR Rendering Imagines the Tiny Pickup That Could

If you think the new Hyundai Santa Cruz isn't a real pickup, you probably forgot about the vehicle GM dared to make in the 2000s. We're talking about the Chevrolet SSR, with its bed that was only big enough for golf clubs.
Modern Chevy SSR Imagined as the Tiny Pickup That Could 2 photos
Modern Chevy SSR Rendering Imagines the Tiny Pickup That Could
That was an era of bold car designs. American automakers wasted a lot of money exploring tiny niches, so we got things like the Plymouth Prowler or the Ford Thunderbird. They were a mess of existing tech, ambitious ideas, and sometimes unjustifiable prices.

The SSR is a great example of a car that was different for the sake of being different. It's a "love it or hate it" kind of vehicle, and most people used to have the latter feeling. But because it's so different, this strange roadster pops up in the media now and then.

What you need to know about the SSR is that it came out in 2003 and lasted only four model years before being discontinued in 2006. Any other type of modern car like that is crap, basically.

But the little Chevy was a roadster, a retro tribute piece, a pickup, and a 2-seater. The early models came with a 5.3-liter, as you'd get in many pickups or SUVs. The 300-horsepower V8 was replaced in 2005 with a 6.0-liter LS2 that made 390 horsepower.

Sounds interesting. So why were only about 22,000 of them ever sold? Well, it might have something to do with the base price of $41,000 back in the day, which roughly equates to $58,000 in today's money.

Let's imagine for a second that GM decided to do a tribute for the SSR to celebrate its anniversary or simply to blow some investor money. Could it do a better job in 2021? Well, this rendering by wb.artist20 attempts to answer that question by adding modern design elements to the roadster pickup.

The front end has a hint of a new Camaro in the mesh grille and the LEDs. Meanwhile, a lot of the panels are a little sharper to make the SSR look expensive. The artist points out that his creation resembles one of those Beetle pickup conversions, and that's a fair thing to say.


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