Dodge to retire Viper moniker after 2017 model

Dodge to retire Viper moniker after 2017 model
author image Desirazu Venkat
Wednesday 22 June 2016, 20:53 PM

Dodge has announced that it will retire the Viper brand name. Plauged by low sales numbers, the Viper will bow out after 25 years and at last count 13 different speed and lap records.This final hurrah for America’s power icon of the 1990s will comprise five special editions of the muscle car.

Dodge Viper

The first is the Viper 1:28 Edition ACR which will be built to commemorate its historic 1:28:65 lap at the Laguna Seca circuit. Only 28 of these will be built. The next is the 100 units production run of the GTS-R Commemorative edition built to celebrate its most iconic paint scheme of blue with white stripes.

The third is the VooDoo II edition which has been created to celebrate the Viper VooDoo edition from 2010. It gets a black paint job with a graphite metallic stripe on the door and will be limited to 31 units. Fourth on the list is the Viper Snakeskin GTC which gets a green snakeskin pattern paint job and stripe. It is limited to 31 cars. Finally there is going to be a dealer edition which will only be sold through a dealer in Texas and Illinois.

The Viper began life in the late 1980s as an effort by the then Chrysler automobile (which owns Dodge) to revive its image as performance automaker. Throughout the 80s Dodge had been building FWD sedans and minivans which gave it financial stability but robbed the image it had cultivated with cars like the Charger and Challenger in the 60s and 70s. This new project was meant to be a glorious return to muscle era that had just begun to grow in popularity once again as the world entered the 1990s. It was hastily built and showcased at the 1989 Detroit Auto Show. It turned out to be an instant hit among visitors so much so that Dodge decided to put it into production and thus the Viper tale began. Now three generations later the tale has finally come to a close for this iconic car.

The Dodge Viper was a Lamborghini developed 8.0-litre naturally aspirated V10. Originally destined for a small truck, this started off producing 400bhp/630Nm but now in this latest iteration produces 645bhp and 830Nm of torque. This is not much as more modern cars produce a lot more with much smaller engines and those amazing things called turbos.

However, that does not matter as the Viper is all about driving sensation which it gives you in spades thanks to a hydraulic steering setup as well as six-speed manual box. Yes this is one of the last few to champion the cause of the clutch and stick shifter.

We believe that if Dodge had modernised the Viper’s powertrain it could have made it fully into the modern era but then again that would have removed the very essence of what made this car so unique.

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