Step Back In Time With The 1990 Chevy C1500 454 SS: Video4
Today, pickup trucks are a staple vehicle for the American family. Moreso than ever, buyers aren’t just buying trucks for the worksite, they’re turning to trucks as an alternative to the sedan, and even crossover.
Back in 1990, Chevrolet saw this and began to cut a niche in the market for its truck buyers. What did that give us? The 1990 Chevy C1500 454 SS—a truck that could only have come from the 20th century.
The MotorWeek Retro Review looked at the special-edition pickup with stary eyes with a 454 cubic inch V8 engine under the hood and oodles of low-end torque and power. Only 10,000 Chevy C1500 454 SS models were built back in the day, which was a drop in the bucket compared to the one-million-plus trucks the brand sold. The price for the added performance? Just over $18,000, or about $35,000 today.
Other special treatments the truck received included a black-out package, 454 SS graphics, fog lights, and an all-red interior. The C1500 454 SS also received a performance handling package with anti-lock brakes at the rear.
What kind of power was the pickup pushing? 230 horsepower and 385 pound-feet of torque. Those weren’t small numbers for the day, and the power came on low with brute force. At high rpms, the engine slowed and didn’t pull nearly as hard, which made for a slower quarter-mile time.
But the truck absolutely oozes a cool factor. And the collector market, which has increasingly shown appreciation for pickup trucks and SUVs, has responded.
A quick search shows low-mileage examples fetch between $17,000 and $25,000. For those looking for tomorrow’s investment today in classic cars, the C1500 454 SS is likely a very safe bet.
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Now of course, me being me, I would love to see a Chevy Silverado SS return with something bigger than the 6.2 (quite preferably a 7.5L 454ci v8) with a lowered magnetic ride ZL1 inspired suspension, 22×12″ wheels, Brembo brakes, blacked out grilles, red outlined bowtie badges, performance hood, upgraded aerodynamics, blacked out LED/HID lighting, performance interior and all that stuff. But that goes along with wanting a more 3rd Gen “F-Body” styled Camaro with an optional 420hp 5.3L V8 Z/28 car that slots under the SS-376, the return of the Impala SS sedan on a RWD platform & a real Chevy “K5″ Blazer based on the 1500 SILVERADO but retro styled, squared off, 4″ lift, 4×4 Dana axles, 33″ tires on 20” wheels, Big brembo brakes, GM Dual exhaust, GM cold air intake, 10-speed auto, 6.2L V8 only, two doors only (if you want a 4-door go buy a Tahoe!), comfortable yet rugged & go anywhere interior that you can wash out like the Jeep Wrangler. Cars like that are what we really want in life. Car’s that mean something, car’s that inject purpose back into life, cars that you can be proud to own and enjoy looking at.
I agree. But, we are old dinosaurs. Looking for Chevy to build Chevys we always knew and enjoyed. My first car was a ’55 Chevy Bel Air in HS back in the 70s. I drive a 2014 Silverado reg cab short box now. It’s no 454 SS but hey.
I have a 454SS, and it is a perfect daily driver. It seems about half the size of current offerings from all the manufacturers, and is a decent city car. The bad news is the big block and gears make it a bit of a gas hog. The good news is it burns regular, and reacts well to simple mods like heads, cam and manifold, and actually gets better mileage after the mods. I love my SS. Seems like I get an offer to buy it every time I drive it.
Catbert, hang on to that truck! Saw several at Car Shows this Summer. So nice. I had a 1990 Sierra 2we reg cab short box w/4.3 and 5 speed. Yes, much smaller than new trucks.