The Dodge Viper has received a reprieve.
After nearly a year of trying to sell the iconic sports car business, Chrysler said Friday it will continue to build the Viper SRT10.
Production was expected to end at the Connor Avenue Assembly Plant in Detroit, known as the “Snake Pit,” in December.
But the new Chrysler has reversed its decision after a review of the company’s products, and top executives found the Viper to be a viable business going forward. The current lineup, including the ACR and competition versions, will continue.
“It’s off the table,” a spokesman said.
Chrysler emerged from bankruptcy in June, and the new company is led by Fiat. The Viper plant was the first to re-start production.
More than 25,000 Vipers have been built since the car launched in 1992. The current SRT10 is powered by an 8.4-liter, 600-hp V10 that can hit 60 mph in less than four seconds. The fourth-generation model hit the market in 2008.
A pet project of then-Chrysler executive Bob Lutz, the Viper debuted as a concept at the 1989 Detroit auto show.
“The Dodge Viper has successfully captured the hearts and imagination of performance enthusiasts around the globe,” Mike Accavitti, CEO of the Dodge brand said in a statement.
“We’re extremely proud that the ultimate American-built sports car with its world-class performance will live on as the iconic image leader for the Dodge brand."
In June, AutoWeek reported a Michigan businessman made several offers to buy the Viper business, and rumors had been swirling as to other potential suitors.
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