Zero to 60 mph in just four seconds? Sixty to zero mph braking in under 100 feet? No, those aren't typos. Just numbers summing up the brutal force in the 8.3-liter V-10 engine packed into this 3,450-pound speedster.
The 2006 Dodge Viper SRT-10, a carryover into this year with some changes, is a speed monster. The two-door, two-passenger sports coupe blasts off 510 horsepower at 5600 rpm and 535 pounds-feet of torque at 4200 rpm.
A deep, menacing exhaust growl resonates as power is put to the road via the car's responsive 6-speed manual transmission. A four-wheel independent suspension brings firmness to the Viper while keeping a check on the vehicle during swift-transition turns. The speed-sensing limited slip differential brings further comfort to the driver. Large tires (275/35ZR18 front, 345/30ZR19 rear) come into play once the 14-inch front and rear Brembo brake rotors are applied.
The Viper is one intimidating vehicle, starting with Dodge's signature crosshair grille, deep-cut side scallops, swept-back fenders, lowered hood lines and, of course, the uniquely placed dual side exhaust pipes.
The interior is tasteful with suede/leather seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel, power-adjustable pedals, cool-looking gauges for oil, battery, coolant and a red push-start button normally found in race cars.
Safety is assured by dual front airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, tire pressure monitoring system, keyless entry and three-point seat belts with pretensioners.
The SRT (Street and Racing Technology) division of DaimlerChrysler claims its credo to be race-inspired, street legal. If I were you, I would feel safe driving this speed monster on a closed track - but if you're confident of keeping a tight rein on this beast on public roads, go for it.
VIPER SRT-10 INFOBOX
Wheelbase: 98.8 inches
Length: 175.6 inches
Width: 75.2 inches
Height: 47.6 inches
Fuel capacity: 18.5 gallons
EPA: city 12 mpg, highway 20 mpg
Base price: $83,145
Price as tested: $90,890
Web site: www.dodge.com/viper
Nitish S. Rele is an advertising staff writer for The Tampa Tribune.