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Dodge Viper

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2008 Dodge Viper
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2008 Dodge Viper
Dodge Viper logo
Dodge Viper logo

The Dodge Viper is a V10-powered sportscar manufactured by the Dodge division of Chrysler Corporation. Production of the two seat supercar began at New Mack Assembly in 1992 and moved to its current home at Conner Avenue Assembly in October 1995. The car, as well as numerous variations of it, have made countless appearances in TV shows, videogames, movies, and music videos. Chrysler has announced that the Viper will see its last year of production in 2010.Unlike most Dodge models,the Viper is using the snake badge rather than the conventional Dodge badge.

See Wikicars' comprehensive Dodge Viper Review.

Contents

Recent Changes

  • As part of its "Dealer Exclusive Program," Dodge has created three special editions specifically for the dealers who've sold the most Vipers across the country. The first is the Viper SRT10 ACR Roadster, commissioned by Woodhouse Dodge of Blair, Nebraska, in yellow with black; followed by the "Reverse SRT10 ACR" in green over black for Texas' Tomball Dodge; and finally Roanoke Dodge of Roanoke, Illinois' Black SRT10 Coupe with a split purple stripe up the middle. Only 50 in total is slated for production.
  • Soon to be consigned into the history books, the iconic Dodge Viper is on its last legs. To send it off with a bang, Dodge will be making 50 Viper Final Edition models (20 Coupes, 18 Roadsters and 12 ACRs). It will only be available in a unique Graphite Clear Coat livery and interior accents. Power remains the same. [1]
  • For 2010, Dodge updates the Viper ACR. Now powered by 600 hp and 560 lb.-ft. of torque from the Viper's 8.4 litre righteous smack-in-the-face to eco-mentalism, the ACR can sprint 0-60 mph (96km/h) in under 4 seconds and do the quarter-mile in the mid 11-second range. Top speed is 184 mph (296 km/h) while 0-100-0 mph is 11 seconds flat. The revised ACR has also set a new lap record at the Laguna Seca with a time of 1:33.915 as recorded by Motech, smashing the lap record of the Devon GTX. 2010 is the final year for this super snake and only 500 units are slated for production. [2]

In 2008, with the introduction of the 510 cu in (8.4 L) V10, the Viper produced 600 horsepower and 560 lb·ft, and also received better flowing heads with larger valves, Mechadyne cam-in-cam variable valve timing on the exhaust cam lobes, and dual electronic throttle bodies. The rev limit was able to be increased by 300 rpm due to the improved valve-train stability from both the new camshaft profiles and valve-springs. The development of the engine was done with some external assistance from McLaren Automotive and Ricardo Consulting Engineers. Electronic engine control is developed by Continental AG, the controller is capable of monitoring the crankshaft and cylinder position up to six times during each firing and has 10 times more processing power compared to the previous unit.

Changes outside of the engine were less extreme. The Tremec T56 transmission has been replaced with a new Tremec TR6060 which now has triple first gear synchronizers and doubles for higher gears. The Dana M44-4 rear axle from the 2003-2006 model now has a GKN ViscoLok speed-sensing limited-slip differential that greatly helps the tires in getting grip under acceleration. Another performance upgrade was the removal of run-flat tires; the new Michelin Pilot Sport 2 tires have increased driver feedback as well as grip and, along with revised suspension (springs, anti-roll bars, and shock valving), has made the Viper more neutral in cornering.

The modifications made to the 2008 model year car were enough for Chrysler to make it distinct from the first SRT-10, and the 2008 model became known as Gen IV. Another notable change is the reworking of the exhaust system, previous third generation Vipers had their exhaust crossover under the seats which resulted in a large amount of heat going into the cockpit, this was done initially to help improve the cars exhaust note, since the first 2 generations of Viper, which had no crossover, were criticized for their lackluster exhaust notes. For 2008, the Viper exhaust will utilize a new exhaust system with no crossover, reducing the heat that enters the cockpit.

Styles and Major Options

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Pricing

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MODEL Trims
Trim1 Trim2 Trim3 Trim4
MSRP
$Price1 $Price2 $Price3 $Price4
Invoice
$Price1 $Price2 $Price3 $Price4

Gas Mileage

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As seen on the FuelEconomy.gov website, the City/Highway MPG averages are as follows:

Trim
Trim1 Trim2 Trim3 Trim4
MPG
c/h c/h c/h c/h

Engine and Transmission

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Performance

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Reliability

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Safety

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Photos

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Colors

  • Bright Silver Metallic/Blue Stripes
  • Black/Silver Stripes
  • Red/Silver Stripes

Main Competitors

Hybrid Models

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Unique Attributes

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Interior

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Resale Values

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<MODEL> Year
Year X Year X-2 Year X-3 Year X-4
Resale Value
$ $ $ $

Criticisms

Jeremy Clarkson from Top Gear has been quoted saying of the Viper's performance: "Against this, the Diablo is like Winnie the Pooh."

Generations

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First generation (1992—1995)

Dodge Viper RT/10
Dodge
aka
Production 1992 - 1995
Class Sports car
Body Style 2-door, 2-seat roadster
Length 175 in
Width 75 in
Height 44 in
Wheelbase
Weight 3400 lb
Transmission 6-speed manual
Engine 8.0 litre 400-hp

400 lb.ft V-10

Power
Similar
Designer Tom Gale

The first prototype was tested in December 1989. It first debuted in 1991 with three pre-production models as the pace car for the Indianapolis 500 when Dodge was forced to substitute it in place of the Stealth, and went on sale in January 1992 as the soft roofed RT/10 Roadster.

The centerpiece of the car was its engine, with the car claimed as being built around it instead of the driver, boasting very few comforts, which did not even include door handles. Originally conceived along side a similar V10 truck engine, which it is commonly mistaken as the same engine, and based on the Chrysler LA engine, then a division of the Chrysler Corporation, revamped Dodge's cast-iron block V10 for the Viper by recasting the block and head in aluminum alloy, and giving the engine a significant power boost. Some within Lamborghini felt the pushrod two-valve design was unsuitable for a performance car and suggested a more comprehensive redesign which would have included four valves per cylinder. However, Chrysler was uncertain about the Viper's production costs and sales potential and so declined to provide the budget for the modification, though Lamborghini was still very active in the creation of the original engine.

The engine produced 400 hp (298 kW) at 4600 rpm and 450 ft·lbf (610 N·m) of torque at 3600 rpm, and thanks to the long-gearing allowed by the torquey engine, provided surprising fuel economy at a claimed 21 mpg US (11.2 L/100 km) if driven sedately. The body was a tubular steel frame with resin transfer molding (RTM) fiberglass panels. Typical of American performance car design, it had a front-mounted engine driving the rear wheels; it was also heavy with a curb weight of 3,280 lb (1,488 kg) and lacked many modern driver aids such as traction control or anti-lock brakes. Car and Driver magazine referred to this generation as "the world's biggest Fat Boy Harley", and likened driving it to "playing ping pong with a Louisville Slugger baseball bat." Despite this, in straight line performance, it completed a quarter mile in 12.9 seconds and had a maximum speed of 164 mph (264 km/h).

Suspension on the first-gen Viper was equally frugal, with many front-end pieces coming directly from the Dakota pickup truck.

Performance:

0-60: 4.6 sec.

0-100: 9.2 sec.

quarter mile: 12.5 sec. @ 112 mph

top speed: 180+ (confirmed by Road and Track magazine / 1992)

700 ft slalom: over 65 mph

skidpad average g: .96

Second generation (1996—2002)

Dodge Viper GTS
Dodge
aka
Production 1996 - 2002
Class Sports car
Body Style 2-door, 2-seat coupe
Length 176 in
Width 75 in
Height 47 in
Wheelbase 96.3 in
Weight 3493 lb
Transmission 6-speed manual
Engine 8.0 litre V-10
Power 449 bhp @ 5200 RPM
663.7 Nm of torque @ 3700 RPM
Similar
Designer

Second generation models increased engine power, improved suspension, and reduced braking distances; the 1996 to 2002 Viper GTS had a 450 bhp (336 kW) engine, which could complete the quarter mile 0.7 seconds faster and increased top speed by 35 km/h (22 mph) or so. A number of third party firms have modified the car to boost performance.

A coupe model, called the GTS, was also introduced in 1996. An interesting feature of the coupe was the "double bubble" roof contours; two small humps to accommodate drivers wearing helmets. Indeed, the Viper's performance has made the vehicle popular for both amateur and professional racers. Vipers can be seen participating often in drag racing, road racing and drifting. The GTS, like its predecessor, was chosen as the pace car for the 1996 Indianapolis 500.

Dodge contracted French racing team Oreca to build a racing version of the Viper known as the GTS-R in the FIA GT Championship's GT2 category, where they won the series in 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001 and 2002 (the last two with Larbre Competition). The car also won its class in the Le Mans 24 Hours from 1998 to 2000 and took overall win at the 24 Hours of Daytona. Dodge would celebrate by releasing a special edition model with the winning car's livery.

In the first six years of production almost 10,000 Vipers were sold. The second generation Vipers were exported to Europe, where they were sold as Chryslers.

The 1999 model was the last Viper that had forged pistons. Subsequent years had lighter-weight, hypereutectic pistons similar to other sports cars, as well as improved exhaust systems. 1999 saw the introduction of the Cognac Connolly package, which saw cars with distinctive Cognac colored interior, special leather and interior trim. Also in 1999, the American Club Racing (ACR) model was introduced. This model featured suspension and engine enhancements focused on maximizing performance in road racing and autocross environments. Horsepower was bumped to 460 bhp in these models. Continuing chassis refinements, ABS braking was introduced in 2001. In 2002, the end of second generation production was celebrated with the release of 360 commemorative "Final Edition" models. These models were painted red with white stripes, paying tribute to the famous race-winning Oreca cars.

Performance:

0-60: 4.0 sec.

0-100: 8.6 sec.

quarter mile: 12.2 sec @ 118 mph

top speed: 190+ mph

slalom: 71.3 mph

skidpad average g: .98

Third generation (2003-2006)


Dodge Viper SRT-10
Dodge
aka
Production 2003-2006
Class supercar
Body Style 2-door roadster
2-door coupe
Length 175 in
Width 75 in
Height 47 in
Wheelbase
Weight 3380 lb
Transmission 6-speed manual
Engine 8.3 litre V10
Power
Similar Chevrolet Corvette
Ford GT
Designer Ralph Gilles

The Dodge Viper underwent a major redesign in 2003, courtesy of DaimlerChrysler's Street and Racing Technology (SRT) group. The new Viper SRT-10 was heavily restyled with sharp, angled bodywork. The engine was enlarged to 8.3 L which, with other upgrades, combined to increased output to 505 hp (375 kW) and 525 ft·lbf (711 N·m) of torque. The chassis was also improved. It became more rigid and weighed approximately 80 lbs less than the previous model. The cornering was exceptional, rivaling or surpassing many other supercars like Ferrari and Porsche. An even better chassis and engine were planned for the car, but Chrysler feared that the Viper's price would reach $100,000. Even if that were the case, the Viper's price would still undercut its rivals significantly. The initial model was a convertible. In 2004, Dodge introduced a limited edition Mamba package. Mamba edition cars featured black interiors, with red stitching and trim and saw their MSRP price rise by roughly $3000. 200 Mambas were produced.

The new Viper SRT-10 Coupe (no longer called the GTS) was introduced in 2005 at the Detroit Auto Show as a 2006 model. It shares many of its body panels with the convertible but takes its side and rear styling cues from the Competition Coupe (see below). The new coupe looks much like the previous Viper GTS and retains the "double-bubble" roof shape of the original, along with the original GTS's taillights as well offering the original Viper Blue paint scheme with white stripes (referred to as GTS Blue) for an added homage to the original Viper coupe. The engine was also certified by the SAE to produce 510 hp and 535 lb/ft of torque. It is important to note that the engine makes the same power as before, only the numerical value of the power was changed. Unlike the original coupe, the chassis was not modified. This made the new coupe heavier than the convertible, and thus slightly slower in low speed acceleration. Handling and high speed performance were improved by the coupe's stiffer frame, reduced drag, and increased downforce.

It has been confirmed officially that the 2008 viper will get a 90hp bump up to 600hp and a 25lbft torque bump up to 560lb-ft from displacement increased up to 8.4 liters and better flowed heads with larger valves.

The third generation Viper has been sold in Europe since 2004, the first model to be sold as a Dodge, as part of Chrysler's new sales strategy for the European market. It's however sold as the "Dodge SRT-10", as the Viper name is a registered trademark in the UK [3].

Performance:

0-60: 3.8 sec.

0-100: 8.36 sce.

quarter mile: 11.7 sec. @ 123 mph

top speed: 200 mph

slalom: 72.4 mph

skidpad average g: 1.05

braking 60-0: 97 ft

braking 100-0: 274 ft

Fourth Generation (2008-2010)

Enlarge

In 2008, with the introduction of the 510 cu in (8.4 L) V10, the Viper produced 600 horsepower and 560 lb·ft of torque, and also received better flowing heads with larger valves, Mechadyne cam-in-cam variable valve timing on the exhaust cam lobes, and dual electronic throttle bodies. The rev limit was able to be increased by 300 rpm due to the improved valve-train stability from both the new camshaft profiles and valve-springs. The development of the engine was done with some external assistance from McLaren Automotive and Ricardo Consulting Engineers. Electronic engine control is developed by Continental AG, the controller is capable of monitoring the crankshaft and cylinder position up to six times during each firing and has 10 times more processing power compared to the previous unit.

Changes outside of the engine were less extreme. The Tremec T56 transmission has been replaced with a new Tremec TR6060 which now has triple first gear synchronizers and doubles for higher gears. The Dana M44-4 rear axle from the 2003-2006 model now has a GKN ViscoLok speed-sensing limited-slip differential that greatly helps the tires in getting grip under acceleration. Another performance upgrade was the removal of run-flat tires; the new Michelin Pilot Sport 2 tires have increased driver feedback as well as grip and, along with revised suspension (springs, anti-roll bars, and shock valving), has made the Viper more neutral in cornering.

The modifications made to the 2008 model year car were enough for Chrysler to make it distinct from the first SRT-10, and the 2008 model became known as Gen IV. Another notable change is the reworking of the exhaust system, previous third generation Vipers had their exhaust crossover under the seats which resulted in a large amount of heat going into the cockpit, this was done initially to help improve the cars exhaust note, since the first 2 generations of Viper, which had no crossover, were criticized for their lackluster exhaust notes. For 2008, the Viper exhaust will utilize a new exhaust system with no crossover, reducing the heat that enters the cockpit.

Performance:

  • 0–60 mph (0–97 km/h): 3.5 sec
  • 0–100 mph (0–160 km/h): 7.6 sec
  • quarter mile: 11.5 sec @ 126 mph (203 km/h)
  • top speed: 203 mph (325 km/h)
  • slalom: 77.2 mph (119 km/h)+
  • skidpad average acceleration: 1.06 g (10.4 m/s²)
  • 100–0 mph (160–0 km/h): 270 ft (82 m)

Variations

GTS-R

Enlarge


Competion Coupe

Enlarge

As of 2003, a special, non-street legal Viper SRT-10 Competition Coupe is available from Dodge for race car drivers, picking up where the GTS-R racing variant left off. The power and torque ratings have been improved, but the vehicle has been stripped of anything not essential for racing, such as the interior body panels, instrumentation, air conditioning, and stereo system which lightened the car by 380 lb (170 kg). The "CompCoupe" comes equipped with a full roll cage, a racing fuel cell, and other racing-related equipment. It is not sold through dealers and is purchased from Dodge directly as, essentially, a very expensive race car component. Pricing is approximately US$139,000. The Viper Competition Coupe sees action in the highly competitive SCCA Speed GT World Challenge.

In 2004 Samuel Hubinette used a Competition Coupe with a modified rear axle for the Formula D, in which he won the title before the car was barred by the end of the season (due to the fact FD would adopt D1 Grand Prix regulations from the following year which had already prohibited the car from competing) and was replaced by an SRT-10 the following season.

After a few one-off entries in the Spa 24 Hours, from 2006, the Viper Competition Coupe will race in Europe fulltime for the first time, joining the new FIA GT3 Cup with the Italian team Racing Box.

ACR

Enlarge

The American Club Racing (ACR) model was introduced in 1999. This model featured suspension and engine enhancements focused on maximizing performance in road racing and autocross environments. Horsepower was bumped to 460bhp in these models. Along with engine and handling mods, these models are distinguished by an "ACR" badge, along with 20 spoke BBS wheels.

A new ACR was added to the Viper line up after the 2008 model year. It's upgrades are more drastic than the original, including racing tires, new brakes, adjustable suspension, and significant aerodynamic revision. It is similar to the MOPAR Viper that Dodge displayed at various auto shows.

ACR-X

To celebrate the end of the current generation Viper, Dodge and SRT unveiled its ultimate iteration thus far. Building on the ACR, the ACR-X retains its 8.4-liter V10, but gains a set of racing headers and a low-restriction exhaust to increase output to 640 hp. It also loses 160 lb while gaining a roll cage as well as aerodynamic enhancements to improve downforce, fuel cell and race seat to get it ready to compete in the SCCA and NASA Viper Racing League. The car goes on sale in Spring 2010 with a pricetag of $110,000.


Worldwide

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Design quirks and oddities

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Awards

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