Review of my Camaro SS (Rental from Avis)
On Saturday I rented a Victory Red Camaro SS from Avis at the San Jose International Airport in California. It was a little over $175 total for the 24 hours I had it. Well worth the money for the ultimate test drive experience. I recommend anyone who hasn't placed an order yet to rent one first. It might make you change your mind about whether to buy an SS or an LT, or help decide on other features.
Overall, I'd say the SS was a blast to drive. The thing I liked the best about it was how comfortable the driving experience was. The leather seats were soft, it handled well on older freeway pavement (even at 130 mph), and it was really quite (when the radio was turned off). The thing I liked least was the limited visibility. I felt unconfortable backing out of parking spots since the rear glass is not much bigger than a port hole and the rear pillars are a huge blind spot. Even lane changing on the freeway is a bit uncomfortable, since the side windows are so short and the side mirrors are so small over all. I currently drive a Hummer H3, which has low profile windows as well, but at least I sit up higher so I have more visibility than the Camaro.
The SS's 426 horsepower was certainly a lot of fun to play around with, but given the current speed limits of most freeways, within 6 to 7 seconds of the gas pedal mashed to the ground and your already well qualified for a speeding ticket. A few more seconds and you could have your license revoked. I was in the 100 to 130 mph mark several times this weekend, but only for short spurts. I like my clean driving record. As much as I'd like to have unlimited power, which is really what you have with the SS, I'm not convinced that the $6300+ extra dollars you need to spend to get the SS over the LT is really worth it. Not that you don't get a signifiant power boost with the SS over the LT, you do, but how frequently are you really going to use it? Other benifits of owning a LT over an SS are, better fuel economy, the ability to use regular vs. premium gas, cheaper oil changes, and the ability to order a spare tire and engine block heater (if you live in a cold climate).
I know I probably sound like a big ***** with what's written above, but hey, I'm also trying to be practicle as well.
On other aspects of the Camaro...
- The bluetooth phone calling feature is really cool, I must have called 10 people and said, "hey guess what I'm driving right now?". It sounded like the person I was talking to was right in the car with me and they had no problems hearing me.
- The sunroof was small and the opening (fully opened) was even smaller. You really only get a half of a sunroof. With that said, it's noisey at speeds over 40 mph. Same thing goes for the window. As soon as I hit 50 with the windows down I started to get a loud buffeting noise. Basically anytime I started to enter a freeway, I rolled the windows up and closed the sunroof.
Well, that was my opinion. Now go out and rent one for yourself and develope your own opinions. The Avis I went to had 2 SSs and 10 LTs, and that's just what I saw on the lot, there may have been more that were currently being rented. If other Avis locations have as many as San Jose, then Avis must own half of all Camaros currently built!