2022 Dodge Viper Review – We all grow up with that car we placed on our bedroom walls. For many my age it was a Nissan Skyline GT-R, Toyota supra, or McLaren F1. For me it was the Dodge Viper. Specifically, a low-res printout of 2000’s Dodge Viper GTS-R concept. With its average beaker, charger Daytona-like wing, and Le Men-inspired body work, this was the example for what would become the third generation Viper coupe. It was a cool car.
2022 Dodge Viper Review
With our new long-term-mid-Engine C8 2020 Chevrolet Corvette is set to arrive in the months ahead, I had to think about what the future could have been for the Viper if it was not discontinued at the end of 2017. So I did what any car enthusiast with newfound time would do on his hands-Hop on the phone with the car trend motor and SUV of the year judges Tom Gal and Chris Theodore.
Gal and Theodore are among the gods fathers of the original Viper program. Theodore was the director of Jeep/Truck Engine Engineering when the Viper program kicked off in the late ‘ 80’s (and is now the author of the last Shelper Kobra, my time with Carroll Shelby). Gal was the VP of the design; His pen is the one responsible for the looming beaker, classic proportions and clean lines. Both men are too modest to admit this, but it is a just bet that without them and the teams they worked with, there would be no Viper as we know it today.
Naturally in talking about a future for the Viper, we have to talk about the past. Here are the scores of the Dodge Viper origin, its subsequent generations, and its future, according to two of the men instrumental in its creation.
Viper-Origin and the history of SR I/SR II
When the very first 1992 Dodge Viper RT/10 had for sale to the public in January of 1992, it outwardly could not have been a simpler car. The front-engine, rear-Drive Padster has a 8.0-litre V-10 manufacturing 400 HP and 450 lb-ft torque, a six-speed manual transfer, two doors, a fairing, and not much else. But being from concept to production was something but easy. We covered the origins of the Viper concept extensively back in this auto-trend classic piece, but the Viper story just really started after she got 1989 Detroit car show debut.
First there was the issue of obtaining the V-10 engine, selected, according to both Gal and Theodore, for various reasons. Theodore points out that “There is no good technical reason for a V-10, ” But one was available in-house-an iron block 8.0-litre unit destined for RAM Heavy Duty trucks. Chrysler At present also has the know-How to convert the heavy truck engine into a lightweight, aluminium-block mill based on owning Lamborghini. Dan-Chrysler President Bob Lutz also really wanted a V-10 engine in the Viper, as Gal. “We really want to have a V-10 car, because we want something that has a heroic relationship. We wanted something unique — otherwise. I just didn’t want anything that is in the image of what someone else has, because you’re going to come into that market and you are going to just look like everyone else, so why bother? “he said.
Not everyone was on board with the V-10 idea, though — namely Carroll Shelby, who was brought to board in an advisory capacity to give legitimacy to the notion that the Viper the Shelas of the ‘ 90 was. “Carroll wanted to say this ultralight Car, ” Theodore. “I think he did not realize how difficult it was with all the safety regulations that came in to play and everything else, to build a ultralight car. “
“To keep him happy, I built a V-8 model, ” said Gal. “It looks exactly like a Viper, except it is about 90 percent of the size of the V-10 motor. But it was designed a V-8 package, so it was closer, a little shorter, and it took a conventional fairing instead of a windshield that flowed into the mirrors, as the concept car had. “
“It didn’t look quite right, frankly, at 9/10ths, because it was narrowed and lost the toughness of the original one, ” said Theodore.
With Shelper plaques by the one-off V-8 Viper and Lutz persistent on the V-10, the Viper team forged.
The end result has been received well. “Brutally quick,” we wrote of the first Viper RT/10 in our February 1992 issue, where it is a Chevrolet Corvette ZR-1. “The Viper is a conspicuous performance bargain and far surpass the ZR-1 in arousal per mile. “
With the Viper RT/10 wins quickly about the hearts and thoughts of journos and enthusiasts, despite (or perhaps because of) its rawness, Gal and his team have the initiative and should work on building a coupe version of the Viper. “We wanted something that felt an enduring and kind of classics to have it,” he said. Inspired by the Shelat Daytona Coupe and Ferrari GTO, who would be the Dodge Viper GTS disels at the 1993 Los Angeles car Show.
By the time it has to buy in 1996, the Dodge Viper GTS ends more than just a bubble-coated Viper RT/10. Is considered as the second generation of the Viper, or SR II (think of the SR I and SR II Viders such as 991 and 991.2 Porsche 911s), the Viper GTS and the RT/10 have more of pretty much everything – more power, better performance, more safety features, and yes, more amenities. It has in the form of power windows for both the new coupe and the RT/10. Pulling the heavy (but cool wback) is Nomex-rotated outlet pipes at the back, Dodge can lose weight and find wasp power. The Viper RT/10 seen horsepower increase to 415 and torque to 488 lb-ft, while Dodge found even more power for the Viper GTS, which made 450 HP and 490 lb-ft torque. Both versions of the Viper advantage of a stiffer chassis and more liberal use of aluminum in the car’s suspension.
“Bigger and badder-as life. Few legends truly live up to their press. The Dodge Viper GTS, on the other hand, exceeds the hyperbool that it is engulfed, “We fell in May 1997. “It, the ‘ civilized ‘ version of the famous Viper RT/10 padster, has modern amenities such as actual doorhandles, roll windows, and an everyday driving attitude just within the boundaries of conventionality. But Dip deep in the overalls reservoir of torque under the GTS’s giant hood, and “Fashion staty ” will be the last thing in your mind. “
Prove that it can live up to the legend of his press, the Viper GTS-R Race car will continue to win his class at the 24 hours of Le Men in 1998, 1999, and 2000, with a friend of the motorcycle Justin clock under the drivers behind the wheel in ‘ 98.
The successful Le Men campaign-not to mention championships in the FIA’s GT series and the American Le Mans Series, and won at the 24 hour Racing at Daytona, Nürburgring, and SPA-the creation of the fist Viper ACR. Short for “American Club Racer, ” The Viper ACR is designed for owners who wanted to capture the essence of the Viper GTS-R Race car in street-right, Track-ready shape. The ACR has small power boost to 460 HP and 500 lb-ft of torque and, more importantly, an adjustable competition suspension, 18-inch BBS wheels at with stickier Rubber, a five-point harness, and a weight-saving regimen, among other things.
Around this time, Dodge also built 100 Viper GT2s as Street Motors (which, confused is colored “Viper GTS-R ” Like the race car), in white with blue stripes, and complete with dive planes and a massive rear spoiler as a homboargation special for its FIA efforts.
By the time the Viper the winning at Le Men and the ACRs is hitting the streets, Gal, who is ready to retire from Chrysler, and his team has to work on the design of the next generation car.
Viper Part Deux: ZB I/ZB II
Although a transition to a mid-mounted power source was briefly considered by Theodore and his team, which would be the third generation (ZB I) Viper in 2003 stuck with the SR’s leading-engine, rear-driving platform. First debut at the 2000 Detroit Motor Show, the Viper GTS-R concept was a preview of things to come.
“We just put all the love in that car,” says Gal. Clearly inspired by the Viper RAS Motors, the GTS-R concept has a low, chopped roof, Aero-friendly Coke bottle curves, and new angle fascia signal the things that come. “That car, just out of all the small bits, the hair pins on the center-slot wheels, the little adjustable trunk splitter pieces… Just all that’s so tastefully done. That car was a precursor of what we are going to do with the next generation car, “says Gal.
“We wanted to get a more refined car with a real convertible top and windows that went up and down, ” Theodore said of the redesign. Despite the missing the spectacles, diving planes, and roof of the concept, the Padster-only 2003 Dodge Viper SRT-10 faithfully captured the essence of both the concept and the original Viper RT/10. It is slightly stretched, stiffted, and given a power upgrade. The Viper’s reliable V-10 grew to 8.3 litres and a comment output boost, now makes 500 HP and 525 lb-foot of torque, yet forwarded by a six-speed manual transfer to wider rear rubber.
Shortly before the ZB I Viper had to buy, both Gal and Theodore would depart which then DaimlerChrysler. Gal would retire as the executive VP of product development and design, while Theodore left as Senior VP of platform engineering. He would go to Ford to make the perennial dream of a mid-Engine American supercar with the 2005 Ford GT.
Although Gal and Theodore are leaving that the team has become Viper, the car soldent ed up in good hands without them.
The Viper SRT-10 coupe, which rejoined the old Viper GTS ‘ now-signature double bubble roof, at the range in 2006. Like the SR II Viders, the new Viper Coupe has a unique klerelig and decklid treatment, too, the latter helps make it more aerodynamic than the convertible. DaimlerChrysler would end up building the 2006 Viper by the end of 2007, turning the model year.
Those who waited for the 2008 Viper SRT-10 coupe and convertible were rewarded with a new, freer-breathing 8.4 litres V-10 (Thanks to some consulting work done by McLaren and Riccardo). The new V-10 made 600 HP and 560 lb-ft of spins and is in a new six-speed manual gearbox and a beefed-UP rear axis with a new limited-slip differential. Small cosmetic and color changes are rounded off the new package.
The new Viper’s production cycle would be short-lived, ending in 2010, largely due to the Great Recession. Even so, it went out with a bang in the form of the Viper SRT-10 ACR. This street-right, but-Track focused Viper variant (not confused with the track-just ACR-X), an adjustable suspension on all four corners, an upgraded stabilizer bar front, competition-specification tapes, and, the most important, front and rear spectacles and carbon fiber dive planes, which combined to give the Viper ACR a reported 1 000 pounds of downforce on 150 mph.
The return: Viper VX
When the SRT (née Dodge) Viper came back in 2013, then-SRT chief and legendary designer Ralph Gilles told us, “We had the privilege to design the fish-not the right. “According to the man who wrote the original, Gilles, more than the Viper-righteousness. “I thought it really came back and celebrated the original car in the way the surface was handled. In a way, it was an old trick that Bill Mitchell at GM used to do years ago – they would come out with the original car, the next year there would be a change-UP, and then they would come back to what the car started [as], and it’s a great way to have image consistency. Whether it is intentional or not, really hats down to the guys who have created the last car, “says Gal.
Drive on a very revised version of the original Viper’s platform (both Theodore and gal readily point to certain hardpoints on the VX-generation Viper that design Gilles and his team around), the new SRT Viper attempts to be a better Track weapon, a better daily driver, and a more luxurious Grand tourer. Power came to a courtesy of a 8.4-litre V-10 with 640 HP and 600 lb-ft torque, to-you recommend it – a six-speed manual.
Following the car’s introduction, we put the new SRT Viper GTS against a Chevy Corvette ZR1 (as tradition dictate we do), and the Corvette came out of the Overcomer. Gilles and SRT reacted only nine weeks later with the Viper TA. Short for “Time attack, ” The Viper TA has lighter wheels, better brakes, stickier rubber, revised suspension tuning, and carbon-fiber aerodynamic improvements. The resulting car was able to improve on the Viper GTS ‘ Laguna Seca Shot time by more than 2 seconds, clapping the track in 1:33.62, which was in time a Laguna production car shot record.
However, the TA was not the award of the VX Viper. It will be the Dodge Viper ACR (the Viper returned to the Dodge point in 2015). The final Viper ACR was under the ultimate street legal track motors. While his V-10 had only five extra wasp power, the biggest changes were made to its chassis, which stiffer was created; Suspension geometry, now adjustable; And brakes, now with more bites. The Viper ACR also has stickier rubber, adjustable shock damping (separately for jounce and rebound), and a reconfigurable Aero package well for more than 1 700 pounds of downforce at speed.
Sales for the fifth generation Viper were never particularly large to start with, and that fact, along with stricter safety constraints spelled the end of the Viper in 2017. After a bunch of five limited edition models, Fiat Chrysler Motors ‘ Connor assembly plant in Detroit the Viper line for good.
So What’s next for the Viper? While some at FCA no doubt want to see the Viper return to the kraal, we are currently not aware of any plans to bring it back. However, if it was to come back, both Gal and Theodore had some ideas for what form it should take.
“I will be a heretic. I’m bored with mid-Engine supermotors now. They are all just else stylized by stop. I don’t think the world needs one more, “said Theodore, what, it must be pointed out again, is the father of the 2005 Ford GT. Dodge can build an electric Viper, Theodore start, but ” Everyone’s building of their own electric supercar, also, so how do you differentiate yourself? “
Theodore, instead, to be suggested barebones-back to what the Viper had made a success when it was launched in 1992. “I will do a front-engine, rear-row car, and I want to try this time to go, because there is only one thing that these electric supercars cannot do – they are not light and not tossable. I’d like to see it say with a long nose, short deck, minimalist type of car,. “I will claim a aluminium block version of [The Challenger Hellcat] Hemiparese V-8. I’ll probably get rid of the [heavy] supercharger, Twin-turbocharge it, maybe fill it with the electrical driving technology they already have, and go back-wheel drive. I’ll probably have the turbos pouring the skin between the front wheels and the deposits. This would be my last-hurrah Viper. “
“We did not practice it, but I’m just completely on the same page, ” says Gal. “If you are going to have the command today, and you are going to build a concept that is going to be the next generation, you have something to do that is going to be at least remarkable for someone and not just in the same image of what everyone else does. I couldn’t agree with Chris.
“My personal preference will be to try a way to keep something that has the relationship of the original cars, [and in the vein of] the Ferrari 812 Superfast. When you look at it, it has a heroic relationship. I just think there is an opportunity to do something that has a beautiful and loving surface. The bottom line is that everything you do in this category should be remarkable in its packaging, and in the way it looks, “says Gal. “It can’t really look like someone else’s group you have on; It should look right. When people see it, they must say, ‘ Oh, WOW. It’s a Viper. ‘”
The Dodge Viper can be gone, and despite no known plans for a return, I wouldn’t count it yet. Weirder things happened – the Corvette’s mid-engste now, and the Ford GT was brought back from the dead, once, but twice. The Dodge Viper is one of America’s most legendary sports cars, and legends never die.