Advance auto zone blog about fast cars and auto trader

Advance auto zone blog about cool fast cars, and auto trader

2006 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS

How far can you push (ok, pull) front-wheel drive? How about 303 horses, 5.6 seconds to 60 mph and a top end pushing 145 mph? These are the raw numbers for Chevy's updated and seriously pumped-up 2006 Monte Carlo SS coupe. Yes, it has a V-8, the first time one's been available in a Monte Carlo since the mid-1980s. And yeah, it drives the front wheels this time.

For starters, the new SS has an all-alloy 5.3 liter V-8 burbling out a stout 303 horsepower - quite an uptick from the old SS's puny (by current standards) 180-hp "high output" 5.0-liter V-8. For another, it's almost three full seconds quicker to 60 (mid-low fives vs. the mid-low eights for the '80s-era SS).
And finally, there's next to no torque steer when you hammer it, thanks to equal stiffness half-shafts and an extruded aluminum engine cradle and triple engine mounts designed to limit engine flex under torque load, among other refinements.
Chevy has also upgraded lower-caste Montes. The standard 3.5 liter V-6 engine in the base model LS ($21,380) now makes a very decent 211 hp and the mid-level 3.9 liter V-6 that's optional in the LT and standard in the LTZ metes out 240 hp, 60 more than the old V-8 SS of the mid-late '80s. Both V-6s feature variable valve timing, but not displacement on demand. OnStar is standard across the line.

The SS model I flogged at Charlotte carries a base price of $27,130, putting it well below the Pontiac GTO and right in the middle of Mustang GT territory. And while it may not be a direct competitor of rear-drive performance coupes like the Goat and Mustang, it is an alternative - one with real back seats, a big trunk (15.8 cubic feet), a very appealing price tag, and more than enough performance to be credible when the time comes to put up or shut up.

The infusion of V-8 power means that Monte Carlo SS owners are no longer condemned to motor toothlessly around the parking lot at Talladega or Martinsville looking silly in their V-6 pretend stockers - all decal, no cattle. The bark of that 303-hp V-8 is plenty convincing.



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