The venerable Dodge Viper RT/10 roadster went on sale 30 years ago in January 1992. The engineering idea was to mate a high-horsepower V10 engine with a lightweight fiberglass body on a two-seat open-top chassis. The public’s reaction to the design had been favorable ever since the car appeared in concept form in 1989 at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
“This is a one-owner since new vehicle since new in great condition with only 4,181 original miles,” the listing reads. “The car has never been driven in rain or wet roads. It is stored in a heated and air-conditioned garage.”
Packing the punch underneath the Viper’s muscular body is a 400-horsepower 8.0-liter aluminum V10, on a Chrysler V8 and developed with engineering assistance from Lamborghini. Power is sent to the rear wheels through a 6-speed manual transmission and a limited-slip differential. Thanks to the Viper’s tubular space frame and fiberglass body panels, its curb weight is only 3,285 pounds, giving the car a favorable power-to-weight ratio and a resulting zero-to-60 time of just 4.6 seconds.
The original Viper was a no-frills, no-nonsense performance sports car, omitting such things as exterior door handles or rollup widows, and weather protection comprised of a simple canvas roof with vinyl zippers. The Viper was also a car that demanded driver engagement, lacking such driver aids as antilock brakes or traction control. Air conditioning was not available until 1994, and it was factory optioned on this example.
According to statistics on the Viper Store enthusiast site, Viper production numbers started off very low but ramped up considerably in the first few years, with 285 units sold the initial year in 1992, 1,043 in model year 1993, and 3,083 in model year 1994. This car could very well be among the lower-mileage examples available anywhere.
“Included are both keys, the owner’s manual, vehicle window sticker and a service manual,” the listing states.
The window sticker shows a factory price of $58,500 including a $2,100 gas-guzzler tax. However, it’s worth noting that the sticker also shows an impressive 22 mpg on the highway.
While fuel economy is probably the least of a Viper enthusiast’s concerns, the condition of this example is bound to impress even the most discerning fan. Boasting fewer than 5,000 original miles, this well-kept Viper is looking to slither into a new garage for the asking price of $55,000.
To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.