What year is best?

Discussion in 'RT/10 and GTS Discussions' started by Tagoo, Mar 15, 2012.

  1. Tagoo

    Tagoo Viper Owner

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    Potential GenII Viper purchasers frequently post asking which is the best year to buy. The usual response is "Dude, you gotta git a 1999 or earlier 'cuz they got forged internals". Not only is that answer factually inaccurate (all vipers have forged cranks and connecting rods), it is misleading as well. The forged pistons found in 1999 and earlier cars are only advantageous if one is going to add nitrous, supercharger, or a turbocharge. Even then, the advantage is only manifest if detonation occurs. Otherwise, Hypereutectic pistons are superior (lighter with less thermal expansion).

    GenII Vipers continued to make substantial improvements in performance and reliability through the years. I've captured some of the most significant differences between the years (I didn't include color as those differences would be obvious). Feel free to add anything else you can think of (or correct anything you know is wrong). I'd like to be able to reference this thread next time a prospective buyer asks "What's the best year".

    BTW, I didn't include the waterpump impeller problem as I'm not certain of the years that were affected. i didn't include the low bleed lifters as I am not certain they make a difference in performance... input is welcome, though.
    [TABLE]
    [TR]
    [TD]Model Year (1996 for GTS only)
    [/TD]
    [TD]1996
    [/TD]
    [TD]1997
    [/TD]
    [TD]1998
    [/TD]
    [TD]1999
    [/TD]
    [TD]2000
    [/TD]
    [TD]2001
    [/TD]
    [TD]2002
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]HP
    [/TD]
    [TD]450
    [/TD]
    [TD]450
    [/TD]
    [TD]450
    [/TD]
    [TD]450
    [/TD]
    [TD]450
    [/TD]
    [TD]450
    [/TD]
    [TD]450
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Forged Crank and Connecting Rods
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Camshaft with extra 6 degrees overlap and .001 inch lift
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Forged Pistons - Best for supercharged/turbocharged/nitrous
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Hypereutectic - Best for non-supercharged/turbocharged/nitrous
    [/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Tube Exhaust Maniforlds
    [/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD]X[/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]18" Wheels
    [/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Upgraded Interior (minor)
    [/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Larger volume Oil Pan
    [/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Solved Rear Frame cracking (weld-in recall required)
    [/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Solved Front Frame Cracking (weld-in recall required)
    [/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Upgraded differential (strengthened ring gear, larger bolts)
    [/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    [TR]
    [TD]Anti-lock brakes
    [/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD][/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [TD]X
    [/TD]
    [/TR]
    [/TABLE]
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2012
  2. Fatboy 18

    Fatboy 18 Viper Owner

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    That's a great guide :) Well done for putting that together :1up:
     
  3. E_tar

    E_tar Viper Owner

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    Once again I have come away with new knowledge.
    Today is indeed a day of days!!
    Thank you sir!
     
  4. Matt M PA

    Matt M PA Enthusiast

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    I agree, nicely done.

    While perhaps very slight changes, the '99s and later also had power mirrors, an inside hatch release and lost the foglight covers.
     
  5. maxdaddy

    maxdaddy Enthusiast

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    I did not know about forged crank and rods.good post
     
  6. PDCjonny

    PDCjonny Enthusiast

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    The exhaust manifold was changed to lighter weight in 98 I believe.
    Kinda reaching a little bit to skew the list towards later years.

    You could never tell this was compiled by a creampuff owner. :smirk:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2012
  7. RoyV101621

    RoyV101621 Viper Owner

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    Look at all the goodies added to the GEN2. That's got to mean my GEN1 is just a Dakota stuffed in to clown shoe. ‘Viva la show car!' :bolt:
     
  8. bluesrt

    bluesrt Viper Owner

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    this thread has the strangest names here:rolleyes:
     
  9. VYPR BYT 94

    VYPR BYT 94 Viper Owner

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    Wow, very impressive chart indeed.
    Is anti lock brakes year correct?
    Maybe it just seemed like alot of discussion on it before it was implemented. :dunno:
     
  10. ZYellow01RT

    ZYellow01RT Viper Owner

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    Great post...thanks. :2tu:
     
  11. Tagoo

    Tagoo Viper Owner

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    Thanks. Chart updated with 98 having Tube Exhaust Manifold.
     
  12. Tagoo

    Tagoo Viper Owner

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    The chart is correct. Anti-lock brakes were introduced in 2001.
     
  13. Steve-Indy

    Steve-Indy VCA Member - Great Lakes

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    Water pump impeller issue primarily a 2001 problem.
     
  14. Mopar Boy

    Mopar Boy Viper Owner

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    Very nice chart. :)
     
  15. DrTaco

    DrTaco Viper Owner

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    Great list! Will help a bunch in the future, I'm sure.

    Change from "smooth" to "textured" dash was in 1998. I also think 1998 was when they added the pass. airbag off switch and the alarm reset glovebox switch. Those may be inportant to some new buyers?
     
  16. Mopar Boy

    Mopar Boy Viper Owner

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    Could also add ACR components if you wanted to go that way....
     
  17. hou99gts

    hou99gts Viper Owner

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    Deeming the interior change in 1999 "minor" would be a personal opinion in my eyes, I think it was much more than "minor". It was one of the main reasons I bought a 99, along with the forged pistons.

    Good info!
     
  18. Camfab

    Camfab Viper Owner

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    Jon don't forget ALL 2000+ Vipers are creampuffs, including your weak '09 and that pooch of a '10 ACR you have. :D
     
  19. APGTS

    APGTS Viper Owner

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    whats different about the interior?
     
  20. DrTaco

    DrTaco Viper Owner

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    ^ satin accents. Like the door handles, e-brake handle and such.
     
  21. PDCjonny

    PDCjonny Enthusiast

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    No, I had the engine(s) torn down and replaced the pistons with forged ones.
    I couldn't bear to be called creamy....;)
     
  22. Cobraken

    Cobraken Viper Owner

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    There is no "best". Only preference.
     
  23. Silver04

    Silver04 Viper Owner

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    Excellent point - You should see the Viper vs. Vette vs. Rosie Perez vs. Chevy vs. Ford vs. Lambo vs. Ferrari vs. Syracuse vs. Cowboys that is taking place on the other parts of this place!!
     
  24. hou99gts

    hou99gts Viper Owner

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    I include the rear hatch release and power mirrors as part of the interior upgrade since the controls are added to the interior. Others have already listed the other differences.
     
  25. Chuck 98 RT/10

    Chuck 98 RT/10 Enthusiast

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    Add another positive check for 92-96. They had that really cool steering wheel that a sports car should have instead of those dorky balloons the government forces everyone to have.

    [​IMG]
     
  26. Chuck 98 RT/10

    Chuck 98 RT/10 Enthusiast

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    The only downside to the GenI is the 50 less hp.
     
  27. Camfab

    Camfab Viper Owner

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    Ok you get a pass!:)
     
  28. whitebluevipe

    whitebluevipe Enthusiast

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    great info
     
  29. Bill Pemberton Woodhouse

    Bill Pemberton Woodhouse VCA Member - West

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    In the land of automobile perception , things often become reality that are not necessarily true. The funny thing is that in 2000 when the cast pistons came out, visitors to the Plant were told about the new motor, about how it had more power and was quite evolutionary. This came to an end by Nov./Dec. at the Plant, as Dodge did not want this information out to the public or competition. Skip Thomas was setting up the Matrix for Viper Days and 2000 Snakes were given an added point for the increase that was known. Bingo, Dodge found out and they came down hard, as frankly they did not want this information out , especially for the Competition to know. Time brings about alot of stories and the idea that one did not want a 2000 in case they would Supercharge it became an issue that really had no reality. We have done well over 300 Superchargers, but very few we ever done on Gen IIs by anyone. Yet this became a perceived disadvantage and somehow over the years folks have forgotten the reality of the situation. The fastest known stock Gen II dragstrip time was and 11.7 at Englishtown. You guessed it, run by a 2000 Red RT-10. Bobby Archer was running a GTS in SCCA and doing quite well and if memory serves me, won the 2000 World Challenge Series. The Ultimate Street Car Challenge was won by the legendary Paul Mumford in his 2001 GTS and there are other numerous examples. What has happened in Viper lore, is a small idea has somehow caused many to actually forget the reality of new technology and that the " Creampuffs " moniker was started by alot of folks with 1999 Vipers. Lost in the translation was the fact that a 2001 and a 2002 also had cast pistons, but with the addition of ABS it seemed only one year suffered the ignomity. The funny part of the whole situation is that many felt, at the time, that the bashing of the 2000 came about because of the incessant rumors that the PCM on the 99 was adjusted and with the heavier wheels ( first year for 18s ) the 99 was down on power and the heaviest Viper ever. Marketing wise , the grass roots efforts turned a somewhat questionable year into a savior, all with the concept of best case scenario for Supercharging. Something seldom done, but within a few years the 99 and older Snakes got a better reputation.

    So ask yourself how much of this is really an issue and how much of it is reality, because if one really carried it to a common sense logical conclusion one would have to ask themselves what kind of pistons are in Gen IIIs and Gen IVs --- hmmm , cast, ha,ha!!
     
  30. PDCjonny

    PDCjonny Enthusiast

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    Blah blah stop ruining the party Bill.
    These guys still take the bait twelve years later. ;)

    [​IMG]
     

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