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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

2020 was the year of the Viper | Hagerty Media

The year 2020 will go down in history for many inauspicious reasons, but we can report an additional, more positive association: 2020 has been the year of the Dodge Viper. Three first-gen Dodge Viper sales in the last three months have successively set new records for the model.
https://www.hagerty.com/media/market-trends/2020-was-the-year-of-the-viper/
30 REPLIES 30
Ajakeski
Intermediate Driver

The one thing that kept me from buying a Viper is that the rear tires are not redily available. Manufacturers only make them on occasion and Viper parts specialists tend to buy them up and then mark them up. It's hard on the wallet to burn up a set of tires that cost $3000.
SycloneMt
Pit Crew

Was such a fan of this car when it first came out when I was a kid. 28 years later and I look at now and I'm like meh...Has the body lines of a Mazda Miata. Still a cool car, but just doesn't do it for me.
spoom
Technician

Agreed, and the rear quarter view (bottom pic) is a major reason why I could never imagine buying one. Looks like the wrong door was put on and then Godzilla stepped on it. I still can't believe it made it past the clay stage with those big "scoops" at the door/front fender junction. Just horrible, and a shame considering the great performance numbers. It did make sure that the Superbird wings never had to worry about looking silly again.
Rider79
Instructor

Boy...I sure don't see a Miata in THOSE lines. Maybe the front-end looks (only) a little like a second-gen Miata.
Indigo
New Driver

It’s going to be interesting to see what the pair of 22 mile Vipers do next month at the Worldwide sale. These cars seem to have been cheap for quite some time now. With the trend of 90’s cars rapidly increasing in value, these cars should be set to explode in value.
cal333
Pit Crew

In 2008 I bought a new Viper ragtop...word was that the convertible version would be discontinued in future models...it still doesn't have a thousand miles on it mainly because the bucket seat is much narrower than my bucket...short trips required but so much fun...the biggest problem Viper pilots have is wiping the smile off their face when back at the garage...
surfdwn
New Driver

I had a '97 GTS for a brief time in the early 2000's. It was a beast of a car with very tricky handling. It would have been very easy to end up in a ditch if you weren't careful. I much prefer my benign 911 4S. I think Vipers are a bargain, but not so much fun to live with.
stevecobb45
Detailer

As a MOPAR fan I lusted for one of these when they first came out. A friend had one & told me, "it can pass anything except a gas station". I'll keep my 1989 Indy Pace car Trans Am. Got 36 MPG on a trip.
Topduarte
Pit Crew

Doubt you got 36 mpg. Maybe 22 mpg on the turbo 231 by but no way close to 36 mpg.

Always like the first gen vipers but they are now out of budget.
bemrfst
Intermediate Driver

I am a led foot and average 17 mpg around town and 23 on the highway with my 2005 Viper. Same as my 2005 RX8...
DT
Advanced Driver

As someone once said. If you have to ask how many MPG you probably can't afford to own and drive the car 🙂
exc911ence
New Driver

And just like that, another cool car gets ripped out of the hands of the average enthusiast and into the vaults of rich collectors. What's going to be left for we peons once every car, truck and motorcycle on the planet is a priceless collectible? I can't help but think that Hagerty is doing more harm than good with articles like this.
spoom
Technician

Someone out there will always own something I cannot afford, but it's not a crime, and there's nothing in the Bill of Wants that guarantees me a pair of shoes, much less a collector car. Should the value of cars be based on the prospective buyer's income, because the present system is "regressive"? When I moved out of my parents' house at 18, my net worth was probably under $1000, but I was free to improve on that. I had plenty of chances to become wealthy, but I had a great time outrunning all of them. I was unbelievably blessed to have been born in a land where I could work and keep at least more than ½ of my paycheck.  Life is good, and I envy no other honest man.. 

DT
Advanced Driver

Don't shoot the messenger 🙂
Eric
Hagerty Employee

the story is retroactive -- as in the changes already happened, before the story was written, and we're reporting the data.
ree
Pit Crew

Sure we all wish we could have a viper...however they have for the most part been now regaled to "look at what I have & you don't" affluent collectors, who see them as profitable investments rather than enthusisits who will actually drive them. The entire performance car market has deteriorated in this manner. The average person wanting to actually buy a car like this, to drive, has pretty much been priced out of the market, so very sad.
spoom
Technician

So, if we all have one, and then drive them daily like they were Smart Cars until they were used up, crashed or rusted out, should our kids then complain that the remaining few are worth too much to afford? I truly don't understand why so many people can't abide the open market. Maybe Biden DID win the election... 😉 

Alikat51
Intermediate Driver

Looks like it did a Dukes of Hazard jump and is bending in the middle! Not a fan.
Rider79
Instructor

I would like to own the true convertible version, but not much interest in owning the others - although it is always cool to see any Viper (or a group - they seem to travel in packs) going by.
greenhue
Pit Crew

This car has always been a second rate supercar. First, the motor came from a pickup truck and the rhythm of the V10, it just don't sound right coming into a car show in 2nd gear, like a flat head or a big v8 does. Then it has the Danny Bonadouche style, I'm rich enough to buy it, so it must be a cool car, but all the gearheads just smile and nod. Just because it is fast and rare don't make it worthy. I place it in the same class as the others that people bought it and thought they were in the club.
Viperenvy
Intermediate Driver

Calling the V-10 a truck engine is the equivalent of a Democrat calling a magazine a clip.
As for the sound, different strokes for different strokes. The sound note for most engines, as I understand it (please, anyone correct me) comes from how the firing order is spaced. On the V-10, the firing order is evenly spaced to ensure pressures smoothly flow thru the engine. They tested one to get the V-8 rumble so many love. It reportedly lost 20 HP. Remember, in the day it was the only American sports car to take on the European competition. People (maybe not you) flocked to the Vipers and left the F, L, and P cars sit by themselves. It rocked the competition. It did that with a Dakota control arm & hub, BMW headlight, minivan rear wiper, and countless parts from cars from suppliers. I'd argue, Viper started the HP wars we are enjoying today. Corvette was mild at best. Viper made it better. Mainly because Viper's forefather, Bob Lutz, went to work for GM and demanded it. It took countless racing championships that were routinely given to the Europeans. For 8 years it was a track menace. It won the GT2 championship in 1997. It won its Le Mans class 3 years. It won Daytona outright. It was unbeatable. When the areo was released in 2008, everyone laughed, maybe you. The year Viper ended production and of the ACR-E in 2017, Corvette soon came out with aero. In 2020, aero is all people talk about. Viper started it in 2008. It may not be your thing. Great! Different strokes for different folks. But the car culture that Hagerty is promoting is about appreciating our differences and our shared passions. What's in your collection might not be my cup of tea, but I'd be excited to hear your passion as you describe your collection, the cars uniquesses, what makes it special to you, and how it stacked up. There is a lot more to the Viper story. The passion today in the Viper community is stronger today than any time before 😉
EG
New Driver

I happen to own a 1995 Gen 1 Viper for more than 20 years. It is not a garage queen with over 55k BIG SMILE miles. Definitely a car that you need to respect because the torque power comes on very quick with no driver aids like traction control or ABS. For those of you that are bashing the Viper, I’m betting you have not driven one to no any better. Either way..,,to each his own.
Maestro1
Instructor

I've never liked it, I've always thought the design was out of proportion and not attractive, I can certainly afford one and would choose something else, and I think market prices are absurd for this car. I'm obviously not the person Chrysler had in mind, and I applaud those who like it, but certainly not at six figures. On the subject of money I'm curious as to when we'll see a market correction in the
Hobby.
I wish all at Hagerty as well as its readers the best possible Holiday.
bemrfst
Intermediate Driver

People that don't like them probably have never driven one. I have a third jen. Copperhead and really like it, as do most people that see it much less ridden in it. It sounds great also, though it is not stock pipes it sounds much better than any turbo muffled car.. It is about time they went up to where they should be!!
Ken1969
New Driver

From 1994 to 1998 I mounted and/or balanced every tire and wheel used on the Viper.I worked for Michelin Tire and they were the exclusive supplier for the Viper. In 1996 I was given one of the new coupes to drive for the weekend. It reminded so much of my 69Vette. 427 3 deuces 4 speed. Loud, obnoxious, rough riding, crude and an absolute blast to drive.
RickB
Intermediate Driver

Viper,Smiper................Love my 1965 Dodge Coronet with a 5.7 liter HEMI and resto-modded to the hilt. Don't care about gas mileage; biggest issue is I'm running out of space for all the show trophies.
Yes I drive it. Yes its gorgeous, and its highly under valued, but its mine, and no you
can't drive it. 🙂

Geok86
Advanced Driver

There is a reason why most American performance cars from the 80s-2000s don’t command better prices, and that is because many late gen x, nearly all millennials, and most early gen z all grew up driving **bleep** box Japanese cars, because they couldn’t afford American performance vehicles. Since they were cheap and reliable, and took lots of abuse/neglect...they stuck with them, and aspired to owning higher performing models. So now today they have some $$, and they pay large sums for ITRs, SIs, Supras, s2000, etc., while many have moved on to German or Italian also. Most wouldn’t be caught dead driving a shoddily built American vehicle from this time period (possibly any period), and A LOT of that blame goes to Boomers, who for SOOO many years have looked and talked down to the younger people into cars....I’m smack in the middle of gen x, and still experience this treatment from many Boomers to this day.
Jim1969
Intermediate Driver

The profile of this Viper is not very attractive. No worries. You won’t see it unless you look very quick as it goes by. I’m a Chevrolet guy. Ill say this to RickB, a 65 Coronet is a good looking car. No, gas mileage doesn’t matter to me either. I’m lucky to get 10 mpg out of 69 Chevelle in town
drhino
Instructor

Good points: Crude, unrefined, fast.

Bad points: Unfortunate styling, sounds like a garbage truck.
oldmustangs49
Pit Crew

It was reported that a local football player bought the first Viper in Colorado. I don't know if he still has it. The guy I worked for I believe bought the 2nd one at a Kruse auction for $105,000 with 102 miles on it and it was titled. He sold his collection of 150 cars in 1995 and it brought $56,500.