While the Dodge Viper isn’t officially available in Australia, there’d be countless Aussie car lovers left a tad forlorn from this week’s announcement that after 25 years, the iconic American supercar will cease production at the end of 2017.
As a nod to the place the Viper holds in motoring history, Dodge will commemorate its final year of production – and the car’s 25th anniversary – by releasing five limited-edition model Vipers.
While details on price are yet to be made available – and you can rest assured you’ll need some pretty deep pockets to get amongst the action – each model is likely to pack the Viper’s knee-weakening 8.4-litre 481kW/813Nm V10 engine.
The GTS-R Commemorative Edition ACR pays tribute to the iconic white and blue combination of the 1998 GTS-R GT championship edition. 100 of these will roll off the production line.
Aussie fans of Kenny Powers and the American comedy series Eastbound and Down will be familiar with the Viper SRT. Limited to just 25, the commemorative Viper Snakeskin GTC will boast the SRT’s distinctive green exterior, but replace the white racing stripe with a snakeskin pattern instead.
Limited to only 31, the Viper VoooDoo [not a typo] commemorates the 2010 model of the same name, while the Viper 1:28 Edition ACR recognises the blistering lap record set by Randy Pobst at Laguna Seca in October 2015. Production of the Viper 128 Edition ACR will be limited to 28 cars.
If these four options aren’t exclusive enough for you, the Dealer Edition ACR will carry the most cachet. USA Today reports that the only place you’ll be able to secure a Dealer Edition will be one of two dealerships: one of which is located in Texas, the other in Illinois.
Of course, it’s not the first time supercar fans have waved a teary goodbye to the Viper. Launched in 1992, production of the car was halted in 2010 when Dodge filed for bankruptcy at the height of the global financial crisis. Re-launched three years later, the new incarnation struggled to achieve parent company Fiat Chrysler America’s sales expectations. “Every economic analysis that we have carried out for keeping that vehicle alive in its current state doesn’t add up,” FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne told the Detroit Free Press.
While 2017 will definitely be the end of the road, the Viper’s legacy is likely to live on as part of the Fiat Chrysler family. Marchionne suggested earlier this year that the technology and engineering that powered the Viper will be incorporated into future sportscar designs across the FCA range, which includes Alfa Romeo and Maserati, among a host of others.