Chevy Racing– SS Unveiling

JIM CAMPBELL:  It’s been a great decade for Chevrolet and NASCAR and our NASCAR teams.  57 years ago at the old Columbia Speedway in South Carolina, a racer named Fonty Flock earned Chevrolet’s first Cup win driving a ’55 Biscayne powered by the legendary Chevrolet small block V 8.  That was win No. 1 for team Chevy.  Just a few weeks ago, Jimmie Johnson and the 48 Chevy powered by today’s version of the Chevrolet small block V 8 won at Texas Motor Speedway to give Chevrolet its 700th Cup victory.  Thanks to Jimmie, Chad Knaus, Rick Hendrick and the entire Hendrick Motorsports team for delivering this milestone victory.
We’d also like to thank every team owner, driver, crew member who contributed to Chevrolet’s 700 wins.  We wouldn’t be here today without the determination of these teams:  Hendrick Motorsports, Richard Childress Racing, Stewart Haas Racing, Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates, Furniture Row Racing, and Phoenix Racing with James Finch.  All told, these teams have earned almost half the Cup wins for Chevrolet.
Chevy has been fortunate to have some of the best drivers in the sport, including Jeff Gordon, who has delivered 87 Cup wins plus four championships; Jimmie Johnson, with 60 wins and five championships, as well as Tony Stewart with 31 Chevrolet wins and three Cup championships.
Chevy’s 702 wins over seven decades include legendary champions, drivers like Buck Baker from the ‘50s; Rex White and Ned Jarrett from the 1960s; Benny Parsons and Yale Yarborough from the ’70s; and even Richard Petty won a championship with the bowtie in 1979; and Darrell Waltrip and Terry Labonte won championships in the ’80s; and of course the legendary Dale Earnhardt won seven championships with Chevrolet.
It’s an amazing group of drivers and owners, and that’s just in the Sprint Cup Series.  Chevrolet also had an exciting run in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, thanks to our Silverado teams for delivering in the 2012 manufacturer’s championship, Chevrolet’s eighth championship in the series.
In addition, congratulations to James Buescher and the 31 Silverado team for winning the driver’s championship.  It’s also been an exciting finish in the Nationwide Series.  Our Nationwide teams clinched the manufacturer’s championship for Chevrolet in 2012, our 15th overall.
Now, I know the Nationwide teams have been busy building and testing their new Camaro race cars.  We introduced that car in July at the Brickyard, and we’re excited about racing it in 2013.  We like the linkage between the Camaro racing the track and the Camaro we’re going to sell in the showrooms.  It’s a performance legend that continues to lead its segment in sales.
And today, we’re going to show you where Chevrolet is heading in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.  To do that, I’m pleased to introduce someone who’s passionate about performance, he’s a strong advocate for the role and contribution of motorsports to what we do every day.  He’s a true car guy; please welcome the president of General Motors North America, Mr. Mark Reuss.  Mark?
MARK REUSS:  Well, thank you, Jim.  It’s been an exciting year for Chevrolet and NASCAR as you saw.  We’re even more excited about 2013.  While our teams were racing and winning over the past decade, Chevrolet and NASCAR were looking forward to the future of the sport.
We’ve both been focusing on a number of important initiatives to build a stronger connection with our fans by incorporating relevant technologies that we’re using on today’s high performance Chevrolets, while also creating designs that help our fans make the link between what they see on the track, on the streets and in Chevy showrooms.
It’s been an ongoing process.  Ethanol based fuels came online here in 2011; fuel injection was implemented this last year; and we’re all focused on putting the stock back in stock car racing during 2013.
We approached the development of the 2013 Chevrolet SS race car with the same processes and technologies that we use on all of our production vehicles.  We developed the race car’s body surfaces and math, using the latest computer modeling tools.  We then used CFD, or computational fluid dynamics, to model the aerodynamic performance without having to build an initial prototype, saving a lot of time and money.
Then we built a 40 percent scale model for the next stage of aerodynamic development and ran it in a state of the art rolling road wind tunnel to prove that we were on the right track with our computational analysis.
John Cafaro, the designer of Chevrolet passenger cars, worked with the race car development team to ensure the design characteristics of the Chevrolet SS production car were seamlessly integrated into the race car.  After making refinements on the scale model, we then built a full sized version of the Chevrolet SS race car for additional wind tunnel testing.
This was the first of hundreds of tunnel hours dedicated to refining the exterior of the car.  This is the kind of work that got us where we are today.
Of course, we tested on the track.  Just like with our production cars, we camouflaged the exterior of the SS to hide its design characteristics from the cameras.  There’s a few little pieces if you really zoomed in on the camouflage that said SS on it, so for those who were paying attention, they saw it.  This is how the car looked during our NASCAR test sessions.  Our NASCAR teams began dialing in their own Chevrolet SS race cars this past spring.  We tested on a variety of tracks like Martinsville, Homestead and Talladega Superspeedway.  Of course the SS has been on many other racetracks for NASCAR, as well, and the results are very, very promising.
And now the time has come for the camouflage to come off.  Let’s bring out the car.
Ladies and gentlemen, this is the all-new 2013 Chevrolet SS race car.  Let’s welcome our special guest, Mr. Jeff Gordon.
JEFF GORDON:  Thank you, Mark.  Appreciate it.
MARK REUSS:  What do you think of the new SS?
JEFF GORDON:  Oh, my goodness.  This thing looks amazing.  It looks fantastic.
MARK REUSS:  Excited to race it?
JEFF GORDON:  I’m so excited to race this car.  I had a chance to test it at Charlotte a couple weeks ago.  Drove great.
MARK REUSS:  Well, would you like to see the car with your own number 24 livery?
JEFF GORDON:  Oh, my goodness, I can’t wait.
MARK REUSS:  Let’s take a look.
JEFF GORDON:  I love it.
MARK REUSS:  What do you think of it, man?  Isn’t is awesome?  It’s awesome.  I am so excited to see your car.
JEFF GORDON:  I am, too.  I always say a fast race car goes a little bit faster on the track, a fast looking race car.  But I’ve got to ask, what was that there at the end?
MARK REUSS:  That’s a little bit of taste of what’s to come here on the production car.  That is the production Chevrolet SS there at the end.  Just like the race car, the production version of the SS will be powered by a V 8, and it will be rear wheel drive once again.  The design of the engineering was done by our global railroad drive team that’s responsible for performance vehicles like the Chevrolet Camaro and the Holden Commodore that is yet to be introduced.  If you’ve driven any of our current rear wheel drive cars like the Camaro, you know that this is a good thing.  You also own a ZL 1 Camaro, don’t you?
JEFF GORDON:  I do.  I actually got a chance to test the ZL 1 at the proving grounds.
MARK REUSS:  Oh, on the MRC.
as so much fun, and that sold me on the car, driving it on that track, I said I’ve got to have one of these cars.  Fantastic car.
MARK REUSS:  I think you got a convertible, as well, didn’t you?
JEFF GORDON:  I got the convertible.  I don’t know, somehow Rick Hendrick got in line before me on the coupe, so I had to wait for the convertible.
MARK REUSS:  That’s a good thing.  I’ve got one on order and I’m picking it up when I return to Detroit.
JEFF GORDON:  I love what they’ve done not just with the performance of the car but with the interior, as well, and of course a great looking car.
MARK REUSS:  Well, I’m happy you’re an owner, and I’m soon to be one here in about a week.
The same team that developed the ZL 1 engineered the Chevrolet SS, and I am you’re a Chevrolet dealer, too, aren’t you?
JEFF GORDON:  I sure am.
MARK REUSS:  Right.  Well, do you think you can sell some of these?
JEFF GORDON:  Are you kidding me?  I can’t wait.  We’re definitely going to sell plenty of these.
MARK REUSS:  Great, great.
JEFF GORDON:  And when can the fans  
MARK REUSS:  The fans have to wait a little bit, but Daytona will be here before we know it, and of course you’ll always be there, but we’re going to introduce the car here in Daytona here during Speedweeks, which I think will be a first for us, as well.

JEFF GORDON:  So what you’re saying is we all have to wait.
MARK REUSS:  Yeah, just a little bit, just a little bit.  Everybody give Jeff Gordon a round of applause.  Thank you so much for being here for this special day for Chevrolet, and thanks for all you do for us.
JEFF GORDON:  Appreciate it.
MARK REUSS:  Now let’s take a closer look at what the Chevrolet SS is really is.  This car puts, again, the stock back in stock cars.  The new SS won’t be mistaken for any other car on the track.  It bears a striking resemblance to our production car, the 2014 SS, and that will be in showrooms here next fall.  Like the production car, the design of the front end is bold, purposeful and highly styled.  The hood has distinctive contours that replicate the production model, as well, and similarly, the rear of the race car is very representative of the stock SS as you see in the picture there.
The profile clearly shows the large wheel arches and the dramatic cove behind the front wheel here just like the production car.  The exterior similarities between the SS race car and the production car are very, very car.  There’s a little bit of math representation of that.  The blue line here on the slide is the race car; the green line is the production car.  The cars match up extremely well.  This is good for our fans, it’s great for NASCAR, and Chevrolet and our dealers, and most importantly, the relationship for our customers.
Everybody wins here.  The development of the SS has been a collaborative effort with NASCAR.  To speak to this, please welcome one of our most important partners here, the president of NASCAR, Mr. Mike Helton.  Mike?
MIKE HELTON:  Thank you, Mark, and this is exciting.  All year long as we were working on the 2012 season, we were completing the evolution of our 2013 car, and this concludes the rollout of them, so we’re all very excited about getting to Daytona during Speedweeks and the Daytona 500 in 2013 and seeing these cars in action on the racetrack there and for the full season next year.
Robin Pemberton, our vice president of competition, led our group to work with the manufacturers for the past several years.  Actually, as Mark alluded to the process at Chevrolet, that process applied to the other manufacturers, as well, and without their support and their collaborative effort, we would not have gotten to this point.  So Mark, Jim Campbell, Mark Kent, Alba Colon, Pat Suhy, everybody from the Chevrolet side and everybody from the other manufacturers, thank you very much, because we’re excited about this and we’ve talked about it all year long.  The anticipation going into 2013 is building, it will build over the off season, and it’ll be, we feel, one of the milestones that we’ll look back as we celebrate our history in the future, we’ll look back and see 2013 and the NASCAR Sprint Cup car as a very significant milestone for us.
As I mentioned, it was a collaborative effort, and along the way we have learned that there are people engaged in our sport that know how to do things like this, and working with their design teams and their engineers, Robin and his group were able to, we think and feel very strongly, deliver something that the fans had asked for.  As Mark alluded, we’ll put stock back in NASCAR stock cars, and so now we’ve completed the circle as we introduced the Nationwide cars earlier, it’s already been announced back in Indianapolis that the Chevrolet Camaro would be part of the Nationwide Series, and these cars will be representing the NASCAR Sprint Cup in 2013, and we’re very excited about that.
Enjoy your weekend in Vegas.  Thank you, everybody, for being here.  Mark, particularly thank you.  It is your energy that led a lot of this and a lots of your suggestions and thoughts guided us through this whole process for everybody.  So thank you.
MARK REUSS:  Mike, thank you for your partnership over the last couple years to do this and our team and the other manufacturers, as well.  I think this is a landmark time for NASCAR, and thank you for listening.  It’s really important you listen to the fans, you listen to us, and I think we’ve got something here that will really change the sport here for the future really.
MIKE HELTON:  I agree with you.
MARK REUSS:  Thank you so much.  Thank you for being here.
Thanks to you, Robin Pemberton, John Darby and the rest of the NASCAR team for working with us.  That partnership is so crucial, and I know I speak for all the manufacturers in saying this is really a landmark time for the sport.
We can’t wait to get back onto the track.  I also want to thank Brian France and Lesa France Kennedy for being here, and Jim, in helping make this day possible for us at Chevrolet, and again, we can’t wait for 2013.  As I told Jeff, the world will see the new production car for the SS when it is unveiled in February during Speedweeks in Daytona.
I can’t think of a better time or place to launch the SS.  I think this is the first time this has ever been done, as well.  The new SS looks great in Chevy racing livery, and will be raced by drivers and some teams like Kevin Harvick and Richard Childress with the Budweiser No. 29 Chevrolet SS; in the Lowe’s No. 48 Chevrolet SS, Jimmie Johnson and team owner Rick Hendrick; Tony Stewart and Gene Haas with the Bass Pro Shops No. 14 Chevrolet SS; and Jamie McMurray, driver of the McDonald’s No. 1 Chevrolet SS with team owner Chip Ganassi.
As a surprise for today, would you really like to see what the rest of these cars look like?  I know I do.
Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome four more members of the 2013 Sprint Cup Series teams.  These teams along with all of our other members of team Chevy really provide the skilled driving talent, commitment, determination that it takes to win both on and off the track.  Thank you all for being here, and now I’d like to invite Jim Campbell back on to close the program.
JIM CAMPBELL:  Thanks, Mark.  What do you guys think?  Well, Mark, for you and Mike and all the drivers and team owners that are here, thanks for being here.  The cars look great.  To the NASCAR fans, thanks for being here.  We’re going to see all of you at Victory Lap on Las Vegas Boulevard
this afternoon.  For all of you online, thanks for joining us for the worldwide debut of the 2013 Chevrolet SS race car.  See you in Daytona in February.
2013 NASCAR Chevrolet SS Unveiled
Will Debut at the 2013 Daytona SpeedWeeks in February
LAS VEGAS – Chevrolet today opened a new chapter in its storied racing history, unveiling its eagerly anticipated 2013 NASCAR Chevrolet SS race car. Powered by the legendary small block V-8 engine, the rear-wheel drive performance sedan will be Chevrolet’s newest entry in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, beginning with the 2013 SpeedWeeks in Daytona, Fla.
The new NASCAR race car closely resembles the all-new rear wheel drive V-8 Chevrolet SS performance sedan that will debut early next year.
“As a passionate race fan, the debut of the SS NASCAR race car is a genuinely exciting moment for me,” said GM North America President Mark Reuss. “With the SS, Chevrolet is delivering a true rear-wheel-drive NASCAR race car that is very closely linked to the performance sedan that will be available for sale, ensuring that our most loyal enthusiasts will have the opportunity to experience the same thrill every day on the open road that our race car drivers enjoy on the track on race day.
“The Chevrolet SS also demonstrates how we are able to leverage our global product portfolio to deliver a unique performance experience,” Reuss said. “The specialized development and testing work done for the race car will certainly benefit the entire Chevrolet product lineup.”
The Chevrolet SS is the next in a long line of famed nameplates that Chevrolet has campaigned in NASCAR. It replaces Impala, which scored 152 wins from 1959-64 and 2007-12.
“We are looking forward to another exciting year of NASCAR competition and expect that the new SS race car, with some of the most skilled drivers on the circuit behind the wheel, will distinguish itself on the track,” said Jim Campbell, U.S. vice president of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports.
The Chevrolet SS will be a derivative of the award-winning global rear-wheel-drive architecture that spawns performance vehicles like Chevrolet Camaro and Holden’s upcoming VF Commodore. The limited production version of the Chevrolet SS will be a 2014 model and will arrive in dealer showrooms in late 2013. It is the first time in 17 years that Chevrolet will offer a rear-wheel-drive sedan for sale in the United States.
Chevrolet has long used the SS (Super Sport) designation on high-performance models of some of its most enduring nameplates. The SS designation first appeared in 1957 on a Corvette prototype race car built under the guidance of Zora Arkus-Duntov with the plan to enter it in the Le Mans 24-hour race.
The first production vehicle to be offered with an SS optional package was the 1961 Impala – 453 were built with the performance upgrades, which included a modified chassis and suspension, power brakes, a steering column mounted tachometer and unique wheels and tires.  The SS designation returned to the Chevrolet lineup in 2010 with the debut of the fifth-generation Camaro.
Chevrolet has 702 victories in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, more than any other manufacturer.  Fonty Flock earned the manufacturer’s first win on March 26, 1955, at Columbia, S.C. Five-time series champion Jimmie Johnson achieved Chevrolet’s 700th victory earlier this month at Texas Motor Speedway.
Chevrolet was America’s best-selling performance car brand in 2011 with Camaro and Corvette accounting for one out of every three sports cars sold in the United States.  The addition of the SS to the lineup is expected to further strengthen Chevrolet’s position as a leading performance brand.
What they’re saying about the Chevrolet SS:
“It’s exciting to finally lift the camouflage off the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Chevrolet SS. It’ll be great to be racing a Chevy small block V-8, rear-wheel drive car on the race track and selling a Chevy small block V-8, rear-wheel drive Chevrolet SS in the showroom. The SS has a great history – it stands for Super Sport – and I can’t wait to see the Chevrolet SS on the opening lap of the Daytona 500 and for the rest of the 2013 season.”
“It’s going to be exciting to see the new Chevrolet SS on track, continuing our quest for more product relevance. We have bio fuels, fuel injection and now we have a car that is closely tied to its production counterpart. So, it’s going to be exciting to see these cars on track. We think the fans are really going to enjoy seeing the new car, and we think it is going to be great for the racing. The new car is an example of how the manufacturers working hand-in-hand with NASCAR resulted in a product that we are very proud of. It’s going to be not only product relevant, but also very exciting on the track.”
“It was a great opportunity to have my group work on a race car design, and use the same tools and methodologies that we use on production cars. We used math to develop it, built the prototype, tested it in the wind tunnel, got feedback from our leadership on the styling, and got feedback from our teams on the aero performance. We had a really good time working with all of the people from our teams and NASCAR really pushing the envelope much further than we ever thought we could.”

“It’s been a huge effort, and the times that I have driven the 2013 Chevrolet SS race car, I’ve been very impressed. I’m excited for Chevrolet, and really for all the manufacturers to have such a cool looking race car. The cars look sharp; they look good; I think the fans are going to be excited to go to the showrooms and buy these vehicles. We have been able to work on them from an aero balance. I know that my friends at GM are awfully smart, and are going to give me a great car to go race with.”
“I think the car is going to be great.  They just have to figure out the final touches are that they put on it for everybody.  When I tested it at Homestead at the start of the year, and then the Talladega test, both times I was really happy with what we had. When I was in the car I felt like it was really nice and it drove really good.”   

“I think it’s one of the most important moves that NASCAR and the manufacturers have made in a very long time.  Just for the fact that the cars on the race track will be very significant in looking like the cars on the showroom floor.  I think from a manufacturer’s standpoint it’s probably the most important move that has happened in I don’t even know how long, but a really long time.  For the fans to have that relevance from the race track to the showroom is important.”
“The new SS looks awesome. That’s the great thing – it’s back to looking like a production car again. It’s a design that I really like. It’s got the perfect blend of having a race car look, but a street car look at the same time; and that’s hard to do. No matter what you’re a fan of, you’re going to be able to pick out your favorite brand of car and see it from the stands.”

“I’m really excited about the new Chevy SS. It looks great and drives great. There is still some development work to do to fine-tune everything, but I can’t wait to get in that car for next year.”

“I’ve had the opportunity to see the Che
vy SS and it’s really an incredibly good-looking race car. It looks like it’s ready to go fast; it looks like it’s going to be competitive, and it looks like it’s going to be a lot of fun to drive.  It looks like something Chevrolet should be proud of.”
“First of all the car is beautiful.  I think the new design of really making a race car look like a street car is a huge step in the right direction, especially when the street car looks good.  It really is a good-looking race car.  It gets us more to where we need to be from an aesthetics standpoint.  From a competition stand point NASCAR is really working hard to not just make this about aesthetics, but to make 2013 about better racing, closer racing, more fun to watch, more fun to do by the way.  I’m real excited about that.  In the testing that I have done with them we have done things that didn’t work and we’ve done things that did work. They have a lot of information to go on now and really that is what I’m most excited about.  I think our fans want us racing closer.  They want better action.  We have to work really hard at it because we run a lot of 1.5-mile race tracks and it’s hard to have good close racing on 1.5-mile tracks.  The concept of making the car so that we can race better together I’m a big proponent of, and I think that is going to be hugely positive.”  
“We’ve done a lot of testing with the 2013 Chevy and it seems to have a lot of speed. It handles really well and I’m looking forward to getting to all the rest of our testing and then getting to Daytona and actually getting to see all the cars painted up for the first time.”
“I think it looks amazing.  From what I’ve seen, I did the photo shoot already with the car, the race car looks amazing.  It looks great.  I think it has a lot of personality.  It looks like a proper Chevy that I think is great.  Knowing that the street car is going to be close to that, I can’t even wait for it.”
“I am excited about the new look of the Chevrolet SS — the SS name symbolizes sportiness and speed, and to wrap that into a 4-door rear-wheel drive sedan will be exciting to see the final product. Overall, the way the identity of the brand, the Chevrolet and SS, will now be promoted in NASCAR is the look that we’ve been needing.”    
“We are very excited about the new ‘13 Chevy SS race car, and can’t wait to get it on-track full-time next year. At Hendrick Motorsports, we have been involved in the development process and have worked closely with the Chevy engineers. There will be some challenges, but I enjoy a good challenge.  I do think it will create good racing on the track.  In typical Chevrolet fashion, it has high-qualify parts and is definitely a great looking car!”

“I think the new race car will be an interesting new challenge.  The rules are quite a bit different than what we have been working with lately.  The aerodynamics are going to be a lot different.  It’s a lot cooler looking car compared to what we have now.  Everybody is excited about that.  It’s going to present a unique opportunity and some challenges for everyone.  We are just looking forward to it.”

“I’m just excited about it because it’s a completely different look than what we have had in the past.  I think it’s going to offer us a lot more opportunities for aerodynamic changes on the car.  I think the fans are going to be able to relate to it because it looks like something they can get in the showroom. The car seems like it’s going to be a lot more stable in race traffic.  The handling characteristics of the car is that it has a lot more grip, so the cars are going to handle a lot better.   I think that is going to promote a lot better racing than what we have had in the past.  I’m looking forward to it and it’s going to be fun.”

“I’ve been part of four of the ‘13 tests.  My first one was at Texas.  To see where they started to where they are today is a huge improvement.  You’ve got to give NASCAR credit for working with the manufacturers and the teams to make it better.  Obviously, if we didn’t do all that testing we might have started the season off not as good as what we had hoped.  It took a lot of effort from a lot of people to get to that point.  They are still tweaking on the rules a little bit, but I think for the most part they feel confident that we have a really good package.  The rules that they are going to make are really small.  I’m really excited about it.  They seem to race better now, more so than what we have today.  With what we have done at the tracks, but we went to Charlotte Motor Speedway two weeks ago and we ran 740 miles.  Jeff Burton was worn out.  He did a lot for us.  We definitely learned a lot.  Again, you just have to compliment NASCAR for really reaching out and saying ‘hey look guys let’s make this the best we can be.’  They really haven’t done that in the past.”

“Obviously the ’13 race car has a lot of style and a lot of things the current race car doesn’t have.  It’s nice to have a car that has some character built in it instead of something that looks the way the current car we have does.  That part of it is really encouraging.  I think the car is appealing to look at compared to what we had before.  That part makes it a lot of fun.  There are a lot of shapes and things that maybe will allow us to work in areas that we have not worked in the past. There are now at least some differences in the brands and difference in things like that, which will maybe cause some disparity across the field that will enable us to pass and have good racing.”

“I think having a new style car is what we have needed for a while here in NASCAR.  I think it gives a little brand identity back, which is going to be huge for our fans.  So that we can get them back in touch with the race cars; it’s going to be a big deal for us.  I like a lot of things about the car.  I really love the clear shark fin. I think that really helps with the brand identity.  I like the shape of the car, the slope of the front windshield, and the rear glass.  I love how they have put all the character back into the car with the wheel flares, and the body character in the nose and tail.  I really think that those details are the kind of thing that fans are looking for to reconnect with the car.”