By on April 4, 2012

The scrum of journalists and wanna-bes around the Viper has been consistently packed for two hours now. We have some impressions from Byron Hurd and NASA instructor Jeff Stutler for your consumption; later on in the show I will wander over, sit in the thing, and try to correlate it with my experiences of the previous Vipers.

Byron sez:

“640hp. 600lb-ft. Reduced weight. An interior completely re-done with help from Ferrari’s low-volume suppliers.

Drop. Dead. Gorgeous.

This is it folks. You can go outside now. Chrysler has stolen the show with the new SRT Viper. Pity Nissan for having to follow an act like this. New Altima? To hell with that. The line for Viper press kits is hundreds deep. Nobody’s coming.

Some notes: Despite rumors of a displacement bump, the new car retains the 8.4L V10 from the 2010, but gains 40hp and 40lb-ft. The clamshell hood is back, but carbon fiber replaces previous composite materials in the exterior panels. New features include mandated ESP, cruise and launch control and the Dart’s fancy gauge cluster.

And yes, The ALMS rumors are true. ”

Quoth Jeff:

“The reveal was great, and the surprise of the alms race car was even greater. The car itself looks fantastic on paper and in the flesh. With a “dry” power tow eight ratio greater than the lamborghini aventador it ought get plenty of people in a lot of trouble. Im not 100% sold on the carbon taillight surround yet but it will grow.

Head of srt says the car will do at least 206mph amd that the goal is not only to be fast but to handle as well, he says you fought with the old car but you plug yourself into this one. ‘its like a miata on steroids.'”

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29 Comments on “New York 2012: Live Viper Shots And Impressions...”

  • avatar

    Dear Satan, your ride has arrived. The first one I might see on the road will be wrapped around a tree or utility pole.

  • avatar

    Thankfully, they didn’t let Ferrari put ALL the Viper’s controls on the steering wheel.

  • avatar

    How does the front look in person? It definitely comes across a bit awkward and fused together of random parts in the photos.

    That interior does look like a massive upgrade though.

    • 0 avatar

      The first thing I thought after seeing the front 1/4 view was that there’s been some convergent evolution between the Viper and Corvette. The headlight treatment is nothing special. Doesn’t look all that ‘viperish’ to me at all.

  • avatar

    Looks like a solid update to the original design.

    Lighter, better interior, more power…yeah, sounds good to me.

  • avatar

    Drop. Dead. Fugly. Micropenis. Augmentation. Device.

    Pretty nice improvement on the nose+heads, rear+tails, though.

    It’s a shame they had to echo the original’s garish 1971-pimp-shoe-acid-bender-in-Frank-Zappa’s-moustache-hair lines so slavishly.

    Why can’t us ‘mericans have a supercar that just looks good? What a shame.

  • avatar
    I've got a Jaaaaag

    I really love the design of the passenger grab handle on the console, to me it is permission to try to make your passenger scream like a little girl.

  • avatar

    “‘its like a miata on steroids.\'”

    What a compliment to Mazda!

    Speaking of Miatas, what I haven’t heard anything about yet is a convertible Viper. Will there be one like in every previous generation?

  • avatar

    The Viper was always a brute of a car. A Supercar, but an 800 pound gorilla. Deserving of awe and respect, but not exactly beautiful.This new Viper is approaching the territory of Jaguar XKE beautyfullness. Ferrari Dino beautyfullness.

  • avatar

    Meh, theres not much that I can say on this re-design other than the overly familar steering wheel, couldn’t they have done something just a little different?

  • avatar

    Darn it!! This is released just when I missed out on that lottery win!

    Maybe next time.

  • avatar

    Love the shape. The color is red-hot like a long-legged model.

    Hate the badge; hence…

    Deal: Dead on arrival.

  • avatar

    Wow this is absolutely stunning. Really well done. It reminds me a lot of the first GTS, but updated and not as cartoonish. Viper fans will eat it up.

  • avatar

    It was an anachronism when it first came out and it is even more so now. There is no reason why a supercar would still have a stick shift and a clutch pedal in this day and age. No reason, other than the fact that Chrysler’s engineering is one solid generation behind european car makers.

    • 0 avatar

      That and the fact that there are still enthusiasts out there who demand one. With 600 lbs-ft, it’s not exactly like the thing will suffer if you decide to leave it in third, either.

      The Shelby Cobra wasn’t exactly a technological tour de force, either. Expecting this to be one is missing the point.

      Now cue the haters who will cry about horsepower/liter.

    • 0 avatar

      Not everybody likes paddles. I’m still young and I cringe every time I read about how a new model has ditched a stick in favour of the new-fangled.

    • 0 avatar

      If you want a tech-focused robot, that’s what the GT-R is for.

      Some of us just want to have fun. I’ll be demanding a stick shift 50 years from now.

    • 0 avatar

      Some of us hate hate hate paddle shifters. I’m very glad that not all the great-car makers have gone the let-our-computers-drive-the-car-for-you route.

    • 0 avatar

      “There is no reason why a supercar would still have a stick shift and a clutch pedal in this day and age.”

      Maybe not if it were purely a track vehicle and you either didn’t enjoy operating a manual transmission or had your driving refined to the point where every tenth counts and you really wanted those fractions of a second for some reason. But for street driving, being able to control desired clutch slip at take-off, firmness and rapidity of all other shifts, and the ability to skip gears in any desired combination is a huge benefit. Unless you’re one of those who would rather just have an automatic.

  • avatar

    This car is a dead ringer for the Viper GTS from a side profile. The only major changes appear to be a somewhat higher beltline and a narrower A-pillar arrangement. But then, they could have done worse than to borrow from that one.

  • avatar

    So much for the ZR1.

  • avatar

    What platform is it built on? Is it an update/rehash of the old Viper, an Alfa 8C re-skin or an entirely new platform?

  • avatar

    Clarktson will be happy about the gear shift.

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