The Chevrolet Caprice may be long gone from the North American market, but in the Middle East the nameplate soldiers forth. Based on the Holden Statesman, the Arabian-market Caprice receives a host of updates for the new model year, including a 6L80E six-speed automatic with Active Select driving either 240-hp 3.6-liter V6 or 6.0-liter V8 putting out 360 ponies. The Caprice is available in several trim levels, incorporating new features like electronic stability control, Bluetooth connectivity and remote start, a handy feature for cooling down the interior after it was backing under the Arabian sun.
Chevy insists that "it is indisputable that the 2009 Chevrolet Caprice is indeed one of the world's best large luxury sedans". We don't know about that, but it's got to be better than the last Caprice we had on this side of the pipeline. Read more about it in the press release after the jump and check out the images in the gallery below to see for yourself.
Chevrolet Caprice: Standing Out With Power And Luxury
All-new six speed 6L80E automatic transmission with Active Select on SS and Royale
Dubai, United Arab Emirates – The Caprice has long been the cornerstone of the Chevrolet brand in the Middle East. Considering its specifications, performance, driving dynamics and value for money, it is indisputable that the 2009 Chevrolet Caprice is indeed one of the world's best large luxury sedans. Chevrolet's biggest sedan now benefits from a six speed 6L80E automatic transmission and even higher specification continues to deliver a thoroughbred driving experience that is far beyond that of its peers.
The SS and Royale variants receive an all new six-speed 6L80E automatic with Active Select carrying a wide 6.0:1 ratio spread improving its launch performance and covered with Aluminium case for low noise transfer and higher torque capacity. Providing a smooth launch feel, the transmission has benefited from extensive calibration work by Chevrolet engineers to balance performance with customer expectations and model requirements. A direct input speed sensor is also there to improve shift feel and smoothness. The other trims are mated to a four speed automatic transmission.
Available with a 6.0 litre V8 engine on all models, which delivers 360 hp (net) at 5,700 rpm and peak torque of 530 Nm (net) @ 4400 rpm, the Caprice is genuinely capable of high performance. A 3.6-litre V6 engine, meanwhile, is available for the LS and LTZ models, and this efficient powerplant can generate peak power of 240 hp (net) at 6,000 rpm and maximum torque of 330 Nm (net) at 2600 rpm.
The sporting SS model receives a number of additions, including high-intensity HID headlamps, remote start to cool down the interior and footwell illumination. New chrome-plated plastic interior door handles have been added to the LTZ, SS and Royale, and all models are now available with the attractive new Switchblade Silver paint.
The 2009 edition of the Caprice receives a host of standard features to maintain its place ahead of its competitors. For starters, GM's state-of-the-art electronic stability control (ESP) now comes standard on the LTZ V6 variant, while Bluetooth connection for mobile phones is featured on all models from the LTZ upwards.
The 2009 Caprice is equipped with a superb suspension package, which includes linear-control independent rear suspension technology to improve handling and drive. The sports ride suspension is there to broaden the car's appeal to a wide range of drivers.
A near 50:50 weight distribution between the front and the rear also contributes to the feeling of a well-balanced car; this has been attained through a lower and rearward positioning of the engine within its bay, a fuel tank located underneath the rear seat passengers – which also improves safety in the event of a rear collision – and relocated battery.
And large, 16-inch anti-lock, fade-resistant brakes and wheel-and-tyre packages are central to the Caprice's fundamental dynamics. The large brakes feature lightweight, compact aluminium callipers, wide pad area and large ventilated discs to reduce stopping distances by around 5 per cent. They also increase fade resistance and offer the driver a more responsive brake pedal.
The Caprice's tyres have been developed to improve handling and longitudinal grip for easy acceleration and short stopping distance. The standard tyre and wheel combinations start with 16-inch on the LS, 17-inch on the LTZ and Royale models and 18-inch on the SS.
Chevrolet is one of America's best-known and best-selling automotive brands and one of the fastest growing brands in the world. With fuel solutions that go from "gas-friendly to gas-free," Chevrolet has eight models that get 30 miles per gallon or more on the highway and offers three hybrid models. More than 2.5 million Chevrolets that run on E85 biofuel have been sold. Next year Chevrolet will offer the Chevy Volt, an extended range electric vehicle that will travel up to 40 miles without using any gas at all. Chevy delivers expressive design, spirited performance and provides the best value in every segment in which it competes.
In the Middle East, Chevrolet has a strong heritage stretching back more than eight decades. Today Chevrolet brings the most comprehensive range of value vehicles to customers across the region, offering superlative excitement, strong personality, value for money, safety and security from a brand that has long been a trusted partner in the region.
Chevrolet boasts the widest range of passenger cars and commercial vehicles in the Middle East, from the cost effective entry-level Spark, Aveo, Optra and Epica models to the iconic Corvette, and the full-size Caprice and Lumina sedans. 2009 sees the launch of the Cruze and Malibu sedans, Traverse crossover and the most famous Chevrolet of them all, the Camaro. Chevrolet also offers exciting and capable SUVs from the compact Captiva and mid-size TrailBlazer, to the fullsize Tahoe and Suburban, the Avalanche and Silverado pickups, the Uplander van, as well as chassis for commercial applications.
General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), one of the world's largest automakers, was founded in 1908, and today manufactures cars and trucks in 34 countries. With its global headquarters in Detroit, GM employs 244,500 people in every major region of the world, and sells and services vehicles in some 140 countries. In 2008, GM sold 8.35 million cars and trucks globally under the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, Hummer, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn, Vauxhall and Wuling. GM's largest national market is the United States, followed by China, Brazil, the United Kingdom, Canada, Russia and Germany. GM's OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services. More information on GM can be found at www.gm.com.
In the Middle East since the 1920s, GM's vehicle brands sold in the region are Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, HUMMER and Saab supported by a unique set of customer-focused services. GM parts and accessories are sold under the GM Parts and ACDelco brands. The regional office in Dubai covers the company's operations in Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, UAE and Yemen. In 2008, GM sold 144, 485 vehicles in the Middle East, a 6% increase over 2007.
For more media material about GM in the Middle East, please visit media.gm.com/gm/en/. More information about GM products can be found at www.gmarabia.com