The Dodge Viper was the first V10 powered vehicle in the world when it debuted in 1992, and after 20 years on the market, Dodge felt the need to strengthen its image by recreating it. When the new Viper debuted in 2012, Dodge had gone further in the rebirth of the American sports car by dropping the Dodge name. The SRT (Street and Racing Technology branch of Chrysler became a separate brand and the Viper would now be simply called the SRT Viper.
How many times do you have the chance to see two 2013 SRT Vipers racing against each other? Not too many times, that’s for sure! But this past weekend two brand-new models were put head to head at the 2013 Spring Texas Invitational. While the Viper is absolutely gorgeous when you see just one on the street, but two in the same place is an absolute godsend.
The 2013 Viper is powered by a new 8.4-liter all-aluminum, V-10 overhead-valve engine that delivers a total of 640 horsepower and 600 pound-feet of torque. The new engine is mated to an improved Tremec TR6060 six-speed manual transmission. With this amount of power, the Viper sprints from 0 to 60 mph in under 3 seconds and goes up to a top speed of 206 mph.
If you want to own a Viper, you can buy one for $97,395.
For all the attention paid to a car’s looks and its accompanying performance credentials, a good sports car can sometimes go down to its color.
Mess that one up and you’re looking at an eyesore. Hit on it and you’re looking at a potential goldmine.
In the case of SRT , paint finishes play an important role in the overall package of the SRT Viper . Whether it’s the classic colors or more of the attention-grabbing hues, giving a car like the Viper the right color finish is a pretty important deal.
In this video, SRT takes us on an up close look at how it cooks up different colors in its "color kitchen.” It’s a task that sounds easy, but it’s really not. SRT stresses that putting in the right colors often involves meticulous detail that includes transforming computer-generated colors into paint samples and eventually spraying a whole car to see if the end results is right up to par with expectations.
Suffice to say, it’s a science that a lot of us take for granted. Fortunately, this video will show us that it’s far from an easy task.
In the grand scheme of auto sales, the majority of buyers will opt for the base model of any particular car, leaving the top trims for those clients with more money. However, it appears that this rule has been flipped on its ear in regards to the SRT Viper . According to SRT, who was as surprised as we are, almost 90 percent of the orders placed for the new Viper are for the more luxurious GTS trim.
To put this in perspective, the standard SRT Viper is priced at $97,395 and the GTS version is set at $120,395 – a massive $23k hike. For this extra scratch, customers get an increased level of luxury that includes: Sabelt seats wrapped in Nappa premium leather in black, red or caramel, lots of Alcantara, a standard 12-speaker sound system, standard navigation, red brake calipers, and advanced suspension and stability control systems.
Considering that SRT is also going to offer a Viper TA Edition , it is safe to say that the standard version won’t enjoy the success SRT initially hoped for, but these upper-level models should make up for it.
Hit the jump for more details about the SRT Viper.
Back in January it was announced that deliveries for the 2013 SRT Viper would be delayed in order to obtain desired perfection. Back then it was rumored that deliveries would begin in mid-February, but it took until now for the company to start shipping the new Viper.
Finally, the first batch of 800 Vipers have left the automaker’s Detroit Conner Assembly plant last Sunday. This plant can only develop a total of 14 units a day because developing such a model is "really a laborious process."
The first 800 units were delivered using at least 10 trucks and most of them will arrive to U.S.-based customers.
The first Viper was auctioned for a pediatric cancer charity and the second one went to SRT brand chief, Ralph Gilles, who drove it to the New York Auto Show. He opted for a white exterior because "it’s easy to maintain, doesn’t show any scratches, looks good for years."
Determined to gain back a measure of revenge, SRT decided to expedite the build of the car it deemed as capable of wasting away the ZR1’s glory. And so, at the New York Auto Show, SRT will be bringing the latest Viper incarnation, the Viper TA.
The "TA" stands for Time-Attack, which shows you the reason why SRT decided to build the car in the first place. It comes with a host of new improvements to the suspension and handling, critical areas where the SRT GTS fell short of in its throw-down with the ZR1.
But the question is, does it all matter, or does the ZR1 just have the Viper’s number?
Updated 03/28/2013: SRT has unveiled a new set of images and a video showing the new SRT Viper TA in action on the race track. Enjoy!
The answer to that question, as well as the full details about the SRT TA, can be found after the jump.
The previous-generation Dodge Viper was often criticized that it has lost the essence of earlier years. Things seems to have been solved, as the new Viper has not been inspired by the model it replaces; instead, SRT designers looked back at the first- and second-generation Vipers which were the most appreciated ones.
In this video, Viper’s Head of Design, Mark Trostle, explains how the design of the new Viper took shape. According to him, designers focused mostly on keeping the essence of the first two generations, but also the unmistakable proportions of the Viper. According to him, even if there is a car cover on, people will still know what car it is. And the final element, the new Viper combines functionality with beauty.
Enjoy the video and let us know in the comments section below what generation Viper you prefer.
SRT announced that once the 2013 Viper was put on sale, customers would also be able to choose the new Track Pack that reduces a total of 62 pounds from the car’s total weight. The new package can be ordered for both the standard Viper and top-of-the-range Viper GTS model.
The new Track Pack includes ultra-high-performance Pirelli Corsa tires, two-piece brake rotors, and lightweight wheels sized 18-by-10.5 inches on the front and 19 inches-by-13 inches on the rear.
The car’s braking system includes brand-new brake cooling vents specially designed to offer maximum cooling and increase the downforce. The new brake rotors weight 8 pounds less than the ones offered in the standard Viper, so that the new braking system offered in the Track Pack sheds 32 of the 62 pounds. The other 30 pounds are dropped through the use of the lighter wheels and tires.
Everyone expects that once the all-new SRT Viper arrives on the market that more powerful versions will follow. SRT CEO, Ralph Gilles, already hinted that a Viper ACR version could arrive in the near future, but this announcement is not a huge surprise.
Unfortunately, we have no idea on what the ACR variant will bring to the already powerful SRT Viper, but we can take a few pointers from the previous ACR model. It’s assumed that SRT will offer a more aggressive exterior look, bigger brakes, adjustable dampers and a set of low-weight wheels with ultra-high-performance tires.
The most impressive update will be made under the hood. The engine will remain the same 8.4-liter all-aluminum V-10 engine found in the base SRT Viper, but tricked to deliver much more than the standard Viper . Considering that the previous Viper ACR offered an extra 100 horsepower over the standard version, you shouldn’t be too surprised to see the ACR model with output close to 750 horsepower.
The previous-generation Dodge Viper ACR impressed us with great results like a Nurburgring lap time of 7:12, so we expect the same from the upcoming SRT Viper ACR. We are pretty sure SRT engineers will not disappoint us.
Once the SRT Viper was launched onto the market, everyone knew that more powerful version are going to follow. SRT CEO, Ralph Gilles, already hinted that a Viper ACR version could arrive in the near future, and now new rumors suggest the model could debut sometime in 2014.
If you were wondering why the model is taking so long to arrive on the market, the answer is simpler than you have probably imagined. It’s not the cost, the engine or any other technical part, rather it’s SRT is having problems with the tires. It looks like SRT has signed an agreement to Pirelli to develop something other than the P-Zero Corsa the Viper already wears.
Along with the new tires, the new Viper ACR will also receive bigger brakes, adjustable dampers, a new aerodynamic package and lots of upgrades made to lower the car’s ride. The most impressive update, however, will be made under the hood, where the 8.4-liter all-aluminum V-10 engine will be tricked to deliver much more than in the standard version. We’ll find out in a few months exactly how much more power Fiat will allow SRT to squeeze out of the Viper ACR.
SRT president, Ralph Gilles, knows all too well that when they introduced the SRT Viper as a coupe model instead of a convertible, they bucked a tradition that started since the Viper itself was born.
But even if the fixed-top coupe came out first this time around, it doesn’t mean that they’re asleep at the wheel in building the convertible version. They’re just not in under any pressure to release it yet, despite Chevy’s recent proclamation that the convertible version of the Viper’s nemesis, the Corvette Stingray , will find its way into dealerships later this year.
Talking to Wards Auto, Gilles admitted that, at its core, the Viper is still designed to be a convertible. "Under the skin is a convertible chassis. It’s already there – the stiffness is there. It’s extremely easy should that come, but we’re not in any rush.”
Without giving any definite timetable, Gilles did say that his hopes are for the Viper Roadster to be released "within a few years".
Talk about a vague answer.
As far as any customer clamoring for the Viper Roadster’s release, Giles downplayed the pressure of succumbing to these requests, saying that enthusiasts of the model have no preference regarding the launch sequence between the coupe and convertible models. “I get a lot of comments from them, and a lot of them love the car either way,” Gilles remarked, before adding that customers usually buy both when each comes out.