One of the most sinister snakes to slither out of the Dodge Viper plant in Detroit rolled off the assembly line on Tuesday as Chrysler simultaneously marks the final year of production for the current generation of its iconic supercar and launches a new race series.
The first 2010 Viper SRT10 ACR-X was completed at the Connor Avenue plant, also known as the “Snake Pit” in the Motor City. It’s a track-only car designed for road-racing enthusiasts, and it melds top performance parts from the Viper ACR (street legal) and the Viper Competition Coupe (far from it).
The ACR-X pumps out 640 hp (40 hp more than the production model) and 605 lb-ft of torque (45 lb-ft more) from the potent 8.4-liter V10. The car is outfitted with factory headers and a low-restriction exhaust system. Weight is reduced 160 pounds from the standard Viper, and the suspension is specially tuned for the track.
The 2010 Dodge Viper ACR-X gets a specially tuned suspension, and weight is reduced 160 pounds to maximize performance on road courses.
Further racing enhancements include a factory-designed fuel cell, a roll cage and a racing seat. The MSRP is $110,000.
“With its amazing on-track performance, the Viper ACR-X is going to seriously turn the heads of all road-racing enthusiasts, whether it is the grassroots driver all the way up to the professional,” Ralph Gilles, Dodge brand CEO and Chrysler’s design vice president, said in a statement.
Enthusiasts will have an opportunity to put all of this to good use in the inaugural Viper Cup, which launches in July at Virginia International Raceway. The 10-race spec series is exclusively for the ACR-X. Prizes include rewards of up to $6,500 for first place and $1,000 in Mopar vouchers.
Other special-edition Vipers include the Viper ACR 1:33 Edition and a Vooodoo-edition Viper ACR. A pet project of then-Chrysler executive Bob Lutz, the Viper debuted as a concept at the 1989 Detroit auto show.
The Viper is enjoying a bit of a victory lap for the final year in its current form. After Chrysler tried to sell the business last year, the company took it off the block, and the Viper factory was the first one that restarted production after the company emerged from bankruptcy last year.
Dodge boss Ralph Gilles: a fan of the iconic Viper.
All of this sits well with Gilles, a longtime and vocal supporter of the Viper. Still, he doesn’t get to drive his personal supercar as often has he’d like. At the AutoWeek Design Forum, he quipped, “Half of the time I’m just sitting there eating cereal and looking at my Viper in the garage.”