Dodge adds a coupe version of its Viper for the 2006 model year. The coupe features a double-bubble roof (to better accommodate a driver and passenger with helmets) and dramatic rear styling with wraparound tail lamps. Only the front fascia, fenders, hood, and doors are shared between the coupe and roadster versions of the car. The coupe also offers 6.25 cubic feet of trunk capacity. The 2006 Viper coupe launches with a Viper Blue exterior accentuated with Stone White stripes, just like the original Viper GTS coupe. Meanwhile, the Viper convertible is available for 2006 in Viper Red and Viper Black, as well as a special "Blue Mamba" edition, which adds unique leather and shift knob accents.
Dodge introduced the second generation of its Viper high-performance sports car in 2004, and for the 2006 model year, brings back a coupe version of its two-seat roadster. The Viper coupe builds on styling cues from the Viper roadster, with Dodge's signature crosshair grille design, deep-cut side scallops, swept-back fenders, and a low hood. Resin injection and sheet-molded composite panels (rather than traditional sheet metal) are used in the front and rear fascia, deck lid, rear quarter panels, doors, hood, front fenders, cowl panel, and windshield frame.
All Vipers are powered by a 510-hp, 8.3L V-10 engine that rockets this sports car from a standing start to 60 miles per hour in less than four seconds. The car's dynamic capabilities are demonstrated even more so in the 0-100-0 exercise on the test track. In this benchmark, the Viper can accelerate from a standing start to 100 miles per hour and then brake to a complete stop, all within about 12.5 seconds-better than all but a small handful of exotics. The engine also routes an amazing 535 lb.-ft. of torque to the rear wheels through a heavy-duty 6-speed manual transmission, yet the Viper still qualifies as a low-emissions vehicle!
Helping to keep that power under control is a race-bred, aluminum suspension system and a limited-slip differential. Brembo-brand brakes feature 14-inch rotors and dual-opposing piston calipers. The Viper rides on 18-inch front and 19-inch rear wheels clad with Michelin zero-pressure run-flat tires. The Viper cockpit features a racecar-style push-button starter, a performance-oriented instrument panel with central tachometer, and a 220-mph speedometer.
The Dodge Viper competes in the Midsize Premium Sporty segment, a small but very prestigious category of high-performance sports cars that make up what they might lack in sales volume with lots of high-horsepower sizzle.
According to the J.D. Power and Associates Sales Report,SM the Chevrolet Corvette dominates this category in sales, delivering 32,489 units to customers in calendar year 2005. Others in this segment include the Porsche 911 (10,107 sales in 2005), Mercedes-Benz SL-Class (10,080), Lexus SC Series (8,360), Cadillac XLR (3,730), Dodge Viper (1,652), and the very low-volume Maserati coupe/Spyder.