It shoulda been a contender. A modern, hot-rodded take on the 1949-’55 Advance Design series Chevrolet pickup, issued by none other than the Bowtie brand itself. But something funny happened on the way to instant-collectible status and the SSR sort of got shuffled into a parking space next to the Plymouth Prowler.
If you’re one of those keeping track, SSRs seem to be more affordable now than ever. According to data from Hemmings.com, the average asking price for a 2006—the final and one of the most desirable years due to the availability of the 6-liter engine and T-56 six-speed manual— was $39,551, based on asking prices from the last three years. The lowest asking price for an ’06 over that period was $23,500 and the highest price was $60,000. Prices trend lower for the earlier trucks which were offered only with the 5.3-liter V-8 and an automatic transmission. Out of 88 2004 SSRs for sale in the Hemmings classifieds over the last three years, the average asking price was $29,000. The lowest price asked was $18,500 and the highest was $45,000.
Those top-end numbers seem steep until you consider that the adjusted-for-inflation cost of a new SSR, that stickered for about $47,000, would be more than $73,000 today. Which means these trucks have hardly been investment grade.
But who cares? If you’re looking for a fun, open-air driver with built in LS power that makes a very retro-styling statement, the SSR is a cool choice. Over four model years there were 24,180 built and since they were pleasure vehicles by design, there are many out there with low mileage and histories of pampered ownership.