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The current and future state of Viper sales and technology

Discussion in 'Generation V Discussions / SRT Coupe, GTS, GTC, AC' started by sunsalem, Jul 22, 2014.

  1. emericr

    emericr Enthusiast

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  2. Stealth

    Stealth Enthusiast

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    Your Gen V test drive experience does not correspond with my Gen IV and now Gen V ownership experience. The Shift Linkage and Drivetrain in the Gen V is much smoother than Gen IV. Granted, it is not a DCT, but that topic has been covered.
     
  3. emericr

    emericr Enthusiast

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    I agree the linkage is smoother ie how it changes from gear to gear. What I mean is that actual pressure needed for the clutch and the gear lever. I was actually being pushed back into my seat when I was pushing the clutch and no I am not a light weight.
    Maybe it gets better with mileage but I did not have that issue on a Gen 4 with 20K miles on it.
     
  4. Bruce H.

    Bruce H. Enthusiast

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    Personal attack...really? You haven't tried over and over discussing anything with me. Our only exchange was where I countered your claim about the Viper not being a great track day car, and that was for the benefit of those reading your uniformed remarks that might have thought it was true. I spent my time here learning about the car before buying a Gen V, noting who to listen to and who to ignore, went out and bought one, I drive and track the Gen V relentlessly, and the car has earned my respect and those I track with.

    Suggesting that I, or any Gen V owner, would need to attempt to justify his purchase of the car aligns with your assessment of the car, not mine, and the reason I mostly just ignore YOU.
     
  5. Bruce H.

    Bruce H. Enthusiast

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    I should clarify who I think the Gen V was intended to appeal to, as that should explain my views. I've said before that I don't think it was ever intended to appeal to Porsche buyers any more than any other brand, despite a comment Ralph once said mentioning Porsche. Good move on his part though as it automatically gives the impression that the Viper is a high end offering and competitive at that level, and it follows that it would be worth a look at by prospective buyers of any high-end performance car. I'm not aware of any marketing effort that targeted Porsche buyers, or any other marque's, and the fact that the car was designed as the polar opposite of a Porsche would seem to support that view. And if that's the case then trying to match its features like the DCT, CCB and anything else because that marque's buyer would expect it becomes a non-issue.

    What I think is clear is that SRT designed the car to be the best performer on the track that they could, retain it's destinctive and exotic styling, maintain their commitment to the classic elemental and engaging analogue driving experience, and thumbed their nose at the trend to having nannies providing performance. SRT nailed their goals without needing the trick stuff. I suspect they'll have those features ready for the future if they need them to keep out front in track performance, or when the desire for an analogue driving experience dries up. The only marketing I ever saw was the magazines articles, and interviews with Ralph, and that's the consistent message and goals I heard. So that's why the car doesn't have some features that some would like, and why they resist adding them. That's 100% in sink with what I wanted, why I chose the car, and why I love it. I also reserve the right to change those preferences, and I can see the day coming where even I will want an auto, and by then I probably won't care if it's an excellent ZF torque converter or a DCT :)

    And if I had ever doubted the market that Ralph and co were after it was put to rest when I met Ralph and his team a few weeks ago at a race and Homecoming. We had emailed a few times previously, and face to face he was very interested in knowing how I came to choose the Viper. He absolutely lit up when I told him I track up to 20 days per year, and desperately wanted a more elemental and engaging experience than my last nanny-ladened track car. He said "where have you been all that time...you're exactly the guy we've been looking for!". That was genuine emotion supporting everything I've seen them say and do, and that explains why the car is the way it is. They've hoped to find buyers anywhere who were looking for the same thing, regardless of what they own now or in the past, whether they track the car or not. It's a driving experience like no other, and very desirable on that basis alone.

     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2014
  6. Free2go

    Free2go Enthusiast

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    Well...I know back in '96 the GTS wasn't exactly track car material. 4 piston calipers up front and ZILCH in the back.....almost like it was designed to powerbrake with a manual and smoke the tires in preparation to drag race. The Koni's were non adjustable coil overs. Later in 99 the ACR's came out for the track guys. Point is, more people drag or street race their cars than track them. Why is the Viper all the sudden predominantly a track car? Want to increase sales? Turn the Viper back into a street beast and build 40 or 50 ACR's because that's about how many people actually track regularly.
     
  7. patgilm

    patgilm Enthusiast

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    Regardless of all of its deficiencies, I remember the opposite back in 1996. It seemed to me that it was always built for the track and most articles highlighted its track capabilities. One mag even had it racing against an R1 motorcycle.
     
  8. 05Commemorative

    05Commemorative Enthusiast

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    you need to test drive a different car because something was wrong with the one you did if that is how you viewed the manual in it. It is way way better than the prior gen models.

     
  9. sunsalem

    sunsalem Enthusiast

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    I know, it's a sad thing....particularly because it isn't true.
    However, ONCE UPON A TIME it was.

    After the oil crisis in the 70s and gas prices skyrocketed, people started to look around for vehicles with better mileage.
    And lo and behold, there stood the little Japanese cars...and the started selling like hotcakes (ricecakes?).

    It took decades for the American manufacturers to accept the fact the market had changed and to start building quality cars of that level (remember the Pinto & Vega? :D).
    Unfortunately, by then Detroit had a terrible reputation with much of the buying public.

    For the last 20 years, I have been buying a new American vehicle on average of once a year (I have a big garage).
    Rarely have I had anything go wrong with any of them other than the typical new car "computer problem" that requires a visit to the dealer for new firmware or a reset.

    Last year I babysat my father-in-law's 2 year old Camry.
    Always maintained by-the-book at the dealer.

    What a bucket of bolts that thing was to drive!:eek:
    I could hardly believe it...
    Clunky, rattling, with a very primitive sounding powertrain.
    The thing could barely move.
    A completely awful car IMO.
    NONE of my American cars of the last 20 years was anything like this Camry.


    Rather than respond to another one of these defensive posts of yours, I suggest you do more than "mostly just ignore" me.
    Please put me on your Forum Ignore List...then you can completely ignore me.;)


    Well said. :cool:
     
  10. Jog

    Jog Enthusiast

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    Taking it back to the originally post....My belief is that the Viper is way to expensive. At it's current price range there are many other options such as the Porsche or Audi. As much as I love the car, it has to turn a profit in order to remain viable in todays market...As for my personal opinion on convertibles....Yeah...Some guys say that's the answer to increase sales...But really..how many guys would actually put the cash up if one was available...Not Much!!
    I think the real solution...is to... unfortunately...design a cheaper Viper. Dodge needs to come up with an 8 cylinder viper. The technology is already there, they could use a version of the Hell Cat engine. This would lower the price on the Viper to somewhere around 90k. This would put it at a more competitive price range against other exotic sports cars in the 100k range. Dodge could still offer the 10 cylinder version as an upper model; maintaining the exclusiveness of the 10 cylinder models.....
    If Dodge does decide to do this....Then they need to do it right!!.....And that means making the 8 cylinder and 10 cylinder models distinctly different so that one can tell the difference easily. An example of this would be: The signature side exhaust; should only be an option on the 10 cylinder models. The 8 cylinder models should have a rear exhaust ( similar to that of the Gen. 2 ). This would make each model unique and easily identifiable.....Despite what anyone my think about an 8 cylinder Viper; it would turn a huge profit. And owners of the 10 cylinder models get to enjoy the exclusiveness of being members of the 10 cylinder club.... I think it's a win win situation...
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2014
  11. Free2go

    Free2go Enthusiast

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    Alright dude, it must be 4:20 at your house. First of all, they need to build a better Viper, charge more money for them and only build 300....like that bad ass movie. There should be an 8 cylinder detuned version, but only available in Canada and Europe with ten cylinder versions available ONLY to US citizens. There shouldn't even BE a side exhaust...they sound like crap in a V10. This isn't about profit or "win win"...it's about world domination. The people who are in charge of the pussyfication of America damn sure didn't have anything to do with the Hellcat.
     
  12. 05Commemorative

    05Commemorative Enthusiast

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    This is so spot on for the target of the car. Rather people think it is for them or not, this really describes it well.

     
  13. 05Commemorative

    05Commemorative Enthusiast

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    so, just throwing out random #'s here? The 96GTS was a lousy track car, you are correct. Gen3/4 are very good out of the box and ACR's excellent with the Gen5 being even better.

    you are looking to a viper to be a drag car? you want street racing? wow, lets lower the bar a bit more. Seems the challenger was built for those needs.

     
  14. Free2go

    Free2go Enthusiast

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    Yes the Challenger was....and it will be sold out for God knows how much over MSRP. 99 percent of people don't give a rats ass about "tracking" their car.
     
  15. Free2go

    Free2go Enthusiast

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    So...SRT tried to market an entire Viper design and production line to the 50 track rats across America. Epic fail. And most of the people who DID buy won't track.
     
  16. Free2go

    Free2go Enthusiast

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    By the way, If I'm gonna pay $100k or more for a "track toy"...I would consider an Ultima GTR, a customized SuperLite Coupe, or an 8 cylinder Atom before a Viper.
     
  17. 05Commemorative

    05Commemorative Enthusiast

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    And then we agree, the challenger is built for your needs. The Viper is not a muscle car to go in a straight line and is not a 60-70k car. It is so much more. Why the desire to make it something it never was.

    Folks need to go track a car for a day or two. If you have a Gen3 or newer viper and don't, you are really missing out on how impressive your car is and what it can actually do. The Gen5 even more so. I promise, you will come back and ask yourself why was street racing important. That should be left for the high school kids. You have spent good money for the car, spend a bit more to make yourself the driver you can be and understand what the car can truly do.

     
  18. 05Commemorative

    05Commemorative Enthusiast

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    you got to stop making up #'s here. where did your 50 # come from?
     
  19. 05Commemorative

    05Commemorative Enthusiast

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    That is good, then you should do that. If I was looking for a track "only" toy, I would probably do the same. But we both know that is not what we were talking about...

    Again, you want a drag car for street racing and HP figures that you can tell your buddies about, the challenger satisfies your needs. You should be happy as problem solved.

     
  20. Free2go

    Free2go Enthusiast

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    You make good points. But to INCREASE sales, they must build a Viper to dominate the STREETS.
     
  21. Paul Hawker

    Paul Hawker Enthusiast

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    Biggest problem Viper has ever had is ignoring Ferrari's policy of always building one less than their demand.

    With Viper, someone always makes a business case, based of promising a certain volume to be purchased. Most of their problems has been when those promised volumes never were realized.

    If Viper would constraign their production to reflect actual demand, most of these problems would be avoided. (however without the promises, current management might never approve production to begin with.
     
  22. Free2go

    Free2go Enthusiast

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    Show me a Viper that can smoke a GTR from stop light to stop light and you have solved your "marketing" problem.
     
  23. sunsalem

    sunsalem Enthusiast

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    IMO, a lot of the current price "problems" with the Viper is the result of the Mortgage Bust of 5-6 years ago (and continuing).
    A lot of upper middle class (traditional Viper customers) had their retirement nest egg destroyed.
    Luxury items are always the first things off the menu during these types of situations.
    This is something neither Dodge nor buyers have much control over.


    When the G5 first came out there was a lot of disappointment over the lack of a vert.
    I don't know if those same dudes are still waiting or have moved on to something else already.....


    Agreed.
    Even if the Hellcat motor won't work, the NA 6.4L puts out close to 500hp right NOW.
    This would put it in the same general vicinity as the Stingray.

    There is many ways to reduce cost for an entry level Viper-lite model: such as lose the expensive Prefix paint job, use more plastic in the interior, bring in more automation on the assembly line, etc.
    Make it a cut above the base Vette, price it in the upper 60s to low 70s and see if it is possible to lure some of the Chevy Faithfull over to the Darkside.


    Agreed.:)


    Couldn't agree more....


    LOL....I think you're probably right.

    If that is what the people want, then so be it.


    +100000
     
  24. 05Commemorative

    05Commemorative Enthusiast

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    I think you started this whole thread, but in reading all your comments, it seems what you want is provided by the Challenger. It is in the price range, has the hp rating you want, has an auto, has exhaust out the rear, is built to go in a straight line. So, why start this thread if you already have the Dodge you want and can afford?

    and to that point, why suggest in the world suggest cheaper Viper when the car you are looking for will soon go on sale? How would that discussion go having a cheap viper in the same price range as the challenger? would seem like complete customer confusion and for what reason?

     
  25. Free2go

    Free2go Enthusiast

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    The Hellcat is not near as sexy looking as a Viper. I personally want a sexy street dominator that waves an American flag. And although I can't afford the Viper I'm talking about at this time....I plan on being ready when it arrives in several years.
     
  26. klamathpro

    klamathpro Viper Owner

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    To say the 96 GTS was a lousy track car is simply misinformation. The original GTS may not have dominated the track but it was no slouch and was in the top 10 fastest overall track cars at the time. My 98' is actually a good track car by today's standards and it was a great track car in the 90's. The brakes were some of the best at the time and actually well balanced. The reason for the small rears is it didn't need larger rears. It actually had slightly too much rear bias on the track. By 2002 better and faster track cars were popping up everywhere and it wasn't until the 2008 ACR that an answer was made. The GEN3's had oil starvation issues on the track and couldn't surpass the GEN2 ACR reliably on the track.

    The Viper was always the street king with great track potential. Part of the current problem is the GEN-V is now an excellent track car with only decent street cred. But to be an excellent track car, you need an excellent driver, or else it wont give excellent results. Comparing the Viper to the GT-R is also not fair because the GT-R is and excellent street car that is a great track car in novice hands. A 2WD car can never be that (except for the MP4-12C). I do agree that the majority of buyers will never track it. So logically, to return the Viper back to profitability, it needs to have excellent street cred and great track cred. It also needs to be open to mods. No car can have excellent street cred for long if it can't be modded.
     
  27. sunsalem

    sunsalem Enthusiast

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    Not interested in a car that looks too much like its original from decades ago (as the Mustang does too).


    The price range I mentioned was for a model to attract the Vette folks to "upgrade," not as a vehicle for myself.
    Vette guys are the natural market for SRT to focus on, not Porsche.


    As I have said before, I personally am fine with 640hp.


    Don't really care about greater straight line speed.


    I want a Viper with a modern transmission (DCT).
    Is that too much to ask for?

    FWIW, I can write a check right now for all 3 iterations of the G5, but all fall short in some way to what I am looking for.


    Agreed.

    I think the turn towards more of a "track" emphasis may be the result of Ralph's influence.
    As we all know, he is very much into spending time at the track.;)
     
  28. pathoguy

    pathoguy Enthusiast

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    I am not as impressed with this Ralph guy as others. When he made the statement about there being an internal hp war (referring to Hellcat vs viper), I thought wowwwww. another marketing miscue, like reporting the 5 extra hp. Why would you even want to mention that or have it known? I have zero confidence that Dodge, SRT or ?, will get this right. This car has no future with the same team plan and agenda.

    In the meantime I am having a blast with my 2013, driving it to work almost everyday and loving every mile. I am eyeing the BMW I8 for my next vehicular adventure, but no hurry to sell the viper....having too much fun. It's a superb car and at the $86k it cost me, exceptional value.
     
  29. 05Commemorative

    05Commemorative Enthusiast

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    My comment earlier on this was really relative to the later gen's in regards to handling and braking. It is a world of difference, but you points below are valid as comparison to its time. btw, Gen3 oil issue easily solved with the Gen4 pan/swing-arm setup and really only an issue when running slicks that generated so much grip in high sweeping turns.
     
  30. HANKFAN

    HANKFAN Viper Owner

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    :headbang:
     

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