1996 Dodge Viper GTS
(Featured on 25th July 2012)
Model: Viper GTS
Sellers original description:
The mighty Dodge Viper needs no introduction. Over-the-top since day one, America's most dramatic sports car has ALWAYS been about excess and performance above all else. And after four successful years of RT/10 Roadster production, Dodge introduced the 1996 GTS coupe which upped the ante for both style and performance by virtue of classic good looks and raw, Detroit style muscle. Today, there's still nothing on the road that can compare to the Viper GTS in terms of sheer audaciousness. And with only 8,657 miles on its odometer, this super clean, first year GTS is a virtual time capsule which offers one lucky buyer some serious super car pedigree at a sports car price! So, if you're a fan of style, speed, track capability or just bad ass cars in general, here's an opportunity to pick up your ultimate car!
This great looking 1996 Viper GTS is a rare and essentially new super car that has been driven just 500 miles a year since it rolled out of Chrysler's Detroit, Michigan manufacturing facility. While its Viper Blue paint isn't as flashy as red, it's every bit as appealing; and, as the first color the GTS body style was ever displayed in, it has become synonymous with the car itself. The finish is, of course, virtually unblemished thanks to expert care since the car was new, and there's not much chance it has ever seen any inclement weather. Since the Viper was definitely a halo product which Chrysler felt had something to prove to the rest of the world, fit and finish is exceptionally good, and overall the car is solid and very well built. Like most 'snakes', this GTS has been a carefully tended toy rather than a daily driver or even a track weapon, and as a result, it has led a very easy life. And I don't care who you are, when you see this car roaring down the street, you know you're in the presence of something special!
Inspired by Pete Brocks classic Shelby Cobra Daytona coupe and sporting one of the most unique shapes ever put on American roads, this 1996 Viper GTS looks fantastic from every angle. At the front of the car, a menacing Dodge crosshair grille is centered between a smooth chin spoiler, clear HID headlights and optional halogen fog lights. At the top of that grille, a blue snake skin textured Viper emblem leads your eye to the cars functional ram air hood which features heat extractors, a centered air intake for the motor and a passenger's side air intake for the climate control system. Behind that hood, factory glass is bordered by body-matched mirrors, unique B-pillar mounted door handles, a traditional billet fuel filler cap and a classic 'double bubble' roof. At the sides of the car, aggressively sculpted doors and chip-free fiberglass rockers sit between super wide rear fenders and body-matched "Viper GTS" emblems. And at the back of the car, a curved body-matched rear spoiler is propped above showroom fresh tail lights, which include a cool Viper emblem CHMSL, a stylized rear bumper and stainless center exit factory exhaust tips.
Even more outrageous than this Viper's swoopy bodywork is its 8.3 liter, 488 cubic inch V10 engine which cranks out a Ferrari slaying 450 horsepower, a pavement splitting 490 lb./ft. of torque and makes this Dodge one of the rawest and scariest super cars ever produced! It's virtually impossible to hurt one of these Viper engines as they are notoriously over-engineered and literally assembled for track time combat; and as a result, weekend warriors have been putting insane levels of boost through stock V10s for years without any difficulties what so ever. And not only do they perform well, they look good too, because Viper engineers knew people would want to see the world's biggest production car engine. With red valve covers, a red fuel rail cover, an exotic looking intake and brushed aluminum Viper graphics, the big engine looks like it would be right at home under the hood of a half-million dollar exotic from Italy, despite being the heart of a heavyweight brawler from Detroit. All the original systems are intact, the original hoses and wires remain, and there's no sign of dirt, neglect, or leakage. And why would there be? These engines were designed and built to the same standards as any other production car engine, and suffer from none of the temperamental idiosyncrasies of some imported exotics with which they compete. Turn the key and this monster V10 cranks to life easily; hit the gas and it pulls like a freight train going up a mountain!
Underneath the car, you'll find a spotless chassis that's complete with a Borg Warner T56 6-speed manual transmission and an upgraded Dana 44 limited slip differential. That differential tries its best to control the V10s massive torque, but even quick half throttle blips turn the big 335 tires into smoke faster than you can say the letters "GTS". The frame has been reinforced to improve precision and address concerns about cowl shake, and the cast unequal length double A-arm suspension features revised geometry, updated coil overs and factory sway bars to make the Phase II Viper a little more user-friendly. This new revised suspension, when combined with the stiffer chassis and aerodynamic body, raises this cars lateral grip to 0.98 and allows slalom runs which exceed 70 MPH! Pound on the brakes, hammer the car around the track, they're more than up to the task of reeling in the engines 505 horses lap after lap. No longer is the Viper a mindless brute, but instead a highly capable sports car that merely needs a driver with a lot of courage to find its limits. At the center of the car, the rear-exit exhaust system I mentioned earlier replaces the RT/10's traditional side pipes with a much improved roar. And at the corners of the car, handsome 17 inch forged alloy wheels spin 275/40 front and 335/35 rear Michelin Pilot Sport performance radials.
Like the cars which inspired it, this Viper features a fresh black interior which places an emphasis on simplicity and performance above all else. The seats, which have seen just enough road time to feel comfortable, wrap great looking perforated leather around molds that are designed to keep you in place during the most spirited driving; and are probably even suitable for track duty. Between those seats, an industrial console, props a 6-speed shifter between a simple emergency brake handle and switches for the car's power windows. And below those seats, like-new black carpet is protected by blue stitched Viper floor mats. At the front of the car, white-faced gauges, which include a slightly optimistic 220 MPH speedometer, keep an eye on the big engine's vitals. And in front of the driver, a leather wrapped steering wheel features a racy airbag cover that is branded with the Viper logo. At the center of the dash, a horizontal row of auxiliary gauges is the coolest arrangement since the '69 Camaro and its console-mounted units; air conditioning, which is standard equipment, functions as well today as it did when the car was new; and an aftermarket Alpine CD player bumps beats through multiple side and rear mounted speakers. The tight black headliner on the car's double bubble roof flows into a glass hatch which hangs over a relatively large storage area, given the purpose of the car. And everything inside this cockpit, from the tilt steering wheel to the courtesy lamps, functions properly and looks great.
Included with the sale of this slick blue Viper is all of its original books and manuals.
If you haven't driven a Viper, prepare for a mind-altering experience, because this car accelerates like the experimental rocket sleds they used to strap Air Force pilots to in the 40s. Yet despite all that brute power, it's easy to drive, comfortable, and relatively docile if you can manage to keep your right foot away from the floor board. And rest assured, putting a car like this in your garage is about the most fun you can every have when it comes to four wheels!