Ride Of The Week 02/08/2021: Dan Laubach’s 2009 HHR SS
“Putting the ‘Sport’ in Sport Utility”
In the late 90s and early 00s, the automotive world began a retro design phase with callbacks to the 1940s, 50s & 60s with models like the PT Cruiser and Prowler from Plymouth/Chrysler, VW’s New Beetle, the rebirth of the 2-seat Thunderbird and this entry from Chevrolet, the HHR or (Heritage High Roof). It came to market shortly after the SSR pickup and was styled after a 1940s Suburban but riding on the Cobalt platform. This direct competitor to Chrysler’s PT Cruiser could be had in both passenger and panel configurations.
What sets this HHR apart is that it is a Panel Body equipped with the SS trim package, making it only 1 or 242 built in 2009. It’s powered by a 2.2 Liter Ecotec Turbo 4 cylinder putting out 235 horsepower. Other options include 18” chrome wheels, 4-wheel disc brakes, Recaro Sport Seats, FE5 Sport Suspension, and centered dash gauge cluster. It’s akin to having a 1950’s Sedan delivery in Bel Air trim with a big block as opposed to an austere 150/210 trim with a straight six.
Dan bought this HHR new from Alexander Chevrolet in Bloomsburg and uses it as his daily driver to the tune of 134,625. It’s driven year-round and never garaged. Which seems like a sin to me with it being only one of 242 examples, but hey, Dan must love cleaning it as much as he loves driving it!