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.
Along with the unveiling of the new-generation Viper , SRT also announced the Viper GTS-R — a model that marks the SRT Viper Racing team’s return to the American Le Mans Series (ALMS). Today the team officially announced that the GTS-R will be making its racing debut on June 22nd through 23rd in the LM GTE Pro class of the 2013 24 Hours of Le Mans.
SRT Motorsports will enter two identical GTS-R models and they will be driven by Tommy Kendall, Kuno Wittmer, Dominik Farnbacher and Jonathan Bomarito.
2013 will mark the SRT Viper’s return in the 24 Hours of Le Mans after an absence of about 13 years. The sports car entered the series in in 1996 when the original GTS-R had its first racing entry. The Viper also won five international GT championships and the 1997 to 1999 FIA GT championships, plus three consecutive one-two finishes at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the GTS class. In 2000 the car had its last win at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona and afterward it was retired from the series.
It sounds a little strange to already talk about a facelift for the recently unveiled SRT Viper , but you have to admit: this is not the craziest thing you have heard. According to a long-range product plan revealed by Chrysler on Wednesday, the SRT Viper will get a refresh in 2015.
At this point it’s a little bit too early to speculate about these updates, so we will let your imagination go wild. Still, you should expect some minor updates on the exterior, with redesigned headlamps, maybe new grille. For the engine, expect a few extra horsepower and improved fuel economy.
The same document reveals that the SRT brand won’t get any new models until late in 2016, but we will see refreshes for three existing vehicles in 2014.
Additionally, Chrysler will get three new vehicles in 2015, Jeep will get two new models in 2015, Dodge will get a new model in 2015, and the RAM brand will get a new Fiat-based van in 2014 and two more new models in 2016. Along with these new vehicles, there will be lots of updates and engine upgrades.
Phew, the next three years sound pretty busy for the Chrysler Group.
Right after SRT unveiled the new Viper to the world, Jay Leno reviewed the pilot car. Unfortunately, Jay couldn’t legally take it on the road, so we didn’t get to see his typical test drive.
Now, the new supercar is back in Jay Leno’s Garage for a more detailed review and the long-awaited test drive. The car was brought to him by SRT CEO Ralph Gilles himself. In fact, Gilles – a true car guy – actually drive it 5,000 miles across country, so Jay could feature it.
Before its date with the track, Jay took the Viper on the typical drive that he is known for. This drive culminated in a fantastic burnout, and Jay and Gilles mocking Chrysler’s former owners, Daimler, for not knowing what a burnout was. After its relatively calm road test, the Viper was pushed to its limits at the Willow Springs test track.
Watch the video and see if the new Viper’s on-the-road performance managed to impress Leno.