2009 Dodge Viper Goes to the Big A
May 17, 2010
I putabout 170miles on our long-term 2009 Dodge Viper over the weekend. The highlight of the weekend was a trip to Anaheim for Saturday's Angels/A's game where Kendry Morales hit two homers, andwhere the Viper was the second-most expensive car in the lot. Top honors went to a Bentley Continental GT.
The parking spaces were roomy enough and the crowd friendly enough that I didn't worry about leaving the Viper in the lot for 3 hours. There was only one instance of anti-Viper activity at the end of the night when a passerby shouted "It's an automatic!" to no one in particular. I watched as he proceeded onto his Honda Civic and wondered briefly whether he'd strain a calf muscle working the clutch of the Viper's heavy-dutyTremec gearbox.
I've managed to stay off the DL in that regard, but we did hit heavy traffic going to and from the game. And after a time, I did begin to tire of the car's wildly offset driving position that has you swiveling your hips and legs to the left while your arms reach right for the steering wheel. Also, the automated 1-4 upshift is tough to overcome in low-speed traffic, and the vast difference in gear ratio (2.66 vs. 1.00) has the engine lugging almost every time.
I still haven't tired of the loud loud loud V10, though, and the exhaust pops on downshifts inspire plenty of gratuitous heel-and-toeing. And considering the Viper is a toy car and comically large tires, the ride quality isn't half bad.
Erin Riches, Senior Editor @ 6,933 miles