2017 Dodge Viper Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2017 Dodge Viper was new.

Scorecard

Performance: 8.1

The 2017 Dodge Viper's ferocious acceleration and athletic cornering will appeal to buyers looking for a purely performance-oriented experience. However, its harsh ride makes it tough to live with on a daily basis.

  • "With a massive 8.4-liter V10 engine, a cockpit that wouldn't be out of place in a race car and all the civility of a hungry bear, the 2017 Dodge Viper is a lot more than just your basic sports car. Driving one is a raw, visceral and aggressive experience like no other." -- Edmunds
  • "Gut-punchingly potent and impressively capable, the Viper offers a challenging and ultimately rewarding experience for drivers bold enough to explore its limits." -- Autotrader (2016)
  • "SRT engineers state that there is supercar performance in every model. We would have to agree." -- Left Lane News (2014)

Acceleration and Power

The 2017 Dodge Viper is powered by an 8.4-liter V10 engine that produces 645 horsepower and 600 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual is the only available transmission. The Dodge Viper gets an EPA-estimated 12 mpg in the city and 19 mpg on the highway, which are some of the lowest numbers in the segment.

The Viper has astounding power, delivering instant and potent acceleration. Its six-speed manual transmission has satisfyingly short throws, though it requires serious effort to move the shift lever.

  • "Plenty of sports cars are fast, but very few are as savage and raw as the 2017 Dodge Viper. Power is delivered with a brutish grunt, and the comically wide rear tires struggle for traction every time you mash the throttle. Rather than a computer-controlled precision machine, the Viper feels more like a hammer. It's a blunt tool with a singular goal: speed." -- Edmunds
  • "That massive, naturally aspirated engine just gives and gives, and those wide tires help the Viper cling to the road. We found the 6-speed manual transmission a bit notchy but enjoyed its short throws." -- Kelley Blue Book (2014)
  • "The aggressive acceleration from the V10 kicks you straight back into the seats with the force of a flying dropkick to the chest by a masked member of the WWE." -- Left Lane News (2014)

Handling and Braking

The 2017 Dodge Viper comes standard with rear-wheel drive. The GT and GTS trims have an electronically adjustable two-mode suspension system with Street and Race settings. The ACR trim has a manually adjustable suspension system with 10 settings.

The Viper's cornering grip is phenomenal, and its steering is sharp. At higher speeds, however, it can be difficult for even experienced drivers to maintain control. Its brakes can also be slow to engage. Regardless of its suspension setting, the Dodge Viper's ride is rough.

  • "If, for some reason, you're interested in having a Viper as your daily driver, you might want to think again. It's livable, but only just. Every bump, crack and imperfection in the pavement makes it into the cabin." -- Edmunds
  • As a daily driver the Viper is a compromise, but for jaunts on winding roads or at the track, it's a blast. Be forewarned, though: The Viper's violent power delivery and quick steering ratio can make it [a] handful to drive – even for experienced drivers." -- Kelley Blue Book (2014)
  • "What would we change? The brakes don't offer the initial bite that we like – there's a bit of travel in the pedal before the Brembos really start to clamp down. It's an unsettling feeling in this car when you go to the brakes and don't get instant grab." -- Autoweek (2013)

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