Finding Anything Hear !!

29 November 2008

2008 Dodge Viper Photos

2008 Dodge Viper Photos

When you hear the words “Dodge Viper”, the only thing that comes to mind is an insane amount of power, and tire-melting torque. The fact that the Viper is gorgeous, handles pretty darn well, and costs $84 grand doesn’t even register. You don’t think about the fact that you’ll have to buy a gas station to be able to drive very much. Nor are you concerned with the fact that there are only two seats. All that matters is power - and the 08 Viper is the most powerful Viper yet. Dodge managed to bump the displacement up to 8.4 liters, and squeezed an extra 90 HP from the legendary V10, for a total of 600 horses under that massive hood.

While adding 90 HP, Dodge managed to increase gas mileage from 12 city / 20 highway to 13 city / 22 highway, and also reduce the 08 Viper’s gas guzzler tax from $3000 to $1700 - that’s a $1300 drop. Come to think of it, that buys a whole lot of gas. The mileage improvement is all the more impressive because the EPA got a lot stricter in 08.

The Viper isn’t for folks who want refinement or fancy gadgetry. In fact, the Viper isn’t even for folks who want cruise control ( it doesn’t have it ). The Viper is all about power - it’s crazy fast, crazy loud, and it isn’t sorry about it. Nor should it be.

2008 Dodge Viper Specs

600 HP 8.4 liter

V10560 lb-ft of torque6 speed

Tremec manual transmission

RWD only

Coupe or roadster body styles

3450 lb curb weight

EPA Says : 13 mpg city / 22 mpg highway

2008 Dodge Viper Reviews

Karl reviews the 2008 Dodge Viper and writes - ‘Fast forward 15 years and you have a 427 cubic inch, 505 horsepower

Corvette that essentially matches the Viper’s performance while destroying it in terms of comfort, functionality and value. Worse still, the original Viper’s slick exterior and “torque-at-any-rpm” have been lost. When considering the advantages a Viper has over a Z06 I can come up with only two — greater (barely) acceleration and more exotic (again, barely) looks.’ reviews the 2008 Dodge Viper and writes - ‘Another of the Viper’s charms is side sills that get hot enough to burn you, due to the exhaust pipes that run through them. I went unscathed, but I’d be careful if wearing shorts. I even respect this aspect. It reminds me of the Nissan 350Z; when it came out, I looked at the large brace that obstructs the cargo hatch and thought, you have to respect that. It’s there for a reason, and that reason is performance. It seems to say, “If you disapprove, buy something else.” The whole Viper is kind of like that. Still, the trunk isn’t bad at all; it’s large enough for golf clubs, I’m told, which seems to be all anyone cares about when it comes to trunk size.’

Edmunds reviews the 2008 Dodge Viper and writes - ‘Drive the Viper hard in a series of corners and in spite of its direct and precise steering, you won’t settle into a smooth rhythm like you might in a less powerful, lighter Porsche 911 or Z06 Corvette. Rather, its power delivery, weight and high-effort controls make the driving experience more World of Outlaws than Formula 1. Still, it never feels nervous in a straight line, even at triple-digit speeds. Pushing the Viper to the limit still requires the skill of a seasoned driver, but even rookie pilots will admire the car’s unbelievable abilities. It’s not comfortable enough to be used as an everyday driver, but for those who can afford to have it as a plaything, this Dodge supercar answers to nothing.’

To put 600 horsepower in perspective: At Daytona and Talladega, restrictor plates limit NASCAR Cup cars to about 470 horsepower; an '07 Indy car engine made roughly 670 horses.
Neither of these meets California's Low Emission Vehicle 2 requirements, as does the Viper's 8.4-liter V-10. Even when running behind the pace car, both Cup and Indy cars get single-digit fuel mileage: The Viper's EPA rating is 13/22, city/highway mpg. A win-capable Cup engine—without car—costs more than the Viper's $84,000 starting price. No one could buy a '07 Honda Indy car engine, but for about $1.5-million you could lease enough to supply one—and only one—car for the racing season.
On the twisty VIR road-racing track with an experienced race driver operating the Viper Coupe's controls, it's shockingly easy to produce extremely quick lap times. (We drove the Coupe on the track and the Roadster on public roads.) One reason: Its Michelin Pilot Sport 2 tires, which feature extra-sticky tread rubber special for the Viper. They give the Viper raw grip far beyond the experience of all but those who own fire-resistant suits.


The '06 Viper (there was no '07) suffered from too little front grip to allow it to produce optimum lap times. When a NASCAR driver complains that his car is pushing, he means the front tires are losing grip a lot earlier than the rears: The '06 pushed significantly. However, if you lack a racer's skill and experience, push is far safer than the alternative of having the rear tires lose grip before the fronts: When that happens the car may spin out. On the racetrack, the '08 Viper's front tires slide just slightly before the rears: It's a near-perfect condition for car-club-style track-day events.

There is one "however": Slow corners. A deft touch is required to avoid spinning the rear tires and causing the rear to step out. But developing a measured touch on the throttle is something '08 Viper owners will have to learn.
The '08's 90 ponies over the '06 come from a host of modifications. These include variable exhaust-valve timing, larger intake and exhaust valves, reshaped combustion chambers, a better flowing intake manifold, and separate ignition coils for each sparkplug. A race-style twin-disc small-diameter clutch allows the engine to rev quicker and better handle the extra horsepower. The '08 Viper features a new Tremec manual six-speed transmission with beefier gears and a shorter-throw shifter that helps cut drag strip times. Dodge says the Viper will run sub-four-second 0-60 mph times.
Power and Performance
Many termed the first Viper a "four-wheeled Harley." This slur referred to its lack of technological sophistication and creature comforts. The 2008 version is a far different animal. It offers advanced features and comfort comparable to its rivals from Ford and Chevrolet (though it still doesn't have stability control). Early Vipers were infamous for poor braking performance, partially because they lacked an anti-lock braking system (ABS). The '08 model changes that with huge rotors, giant Brembo calipers and superbly calibrated ABS. (Dodge claims a sub-100-foot 60-0 mph braking distance.) Even on poorly maintained Deep South rural roads, the Roadster offered ride comfort challenging its rival from Bowling Green. Steering feel was superb.
One of the few complaints is the instrument panel. It has a giant, centrally located tachometer and a tiny speedometer placed to the side. Because the speedometer is so small and hard to read, I could not safely check my speed at the end of VIR's front straight, and still have time to correctly determine where to step on the brakes: You have to get rid of about 100 mph to negotiate VIR's Turn One, so driving past the correct braking marker is a bad thing. The speedo goes to 220 mph, about 20 mph beyond what Dodges claims as the Viper's top speed. On public roads, the small speedo makes it a challenge to ensure a non-prosecutable speed. My friends in law enforcement say most allow at least eight mph over the limit and many give 14. Viper drivers shouldn't expect the same tolerances. (
About the Author
Mac Demere is an auto journalist, vehicle tester and race driver who competed in the NASCAR Southwest Tour and Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona.

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