If you needed another reason to love what Chrysler has been up to lately, it is back with the Viper American Club Racer (ACR) to fill your inner gearhead with all sorts of warm and fuzzy feelings. Meet the “fastest street-legal Viper track car ever,” according to Dodge.
Powering the Viper ACR is the same 8.4-liter V-10 that powers the standard Viper. This engine puts down a mighty fine 645 horsepower and 600 pound-feet of torque without the aid of forced induction. Power travels through a six-speed manual transmission on its way to the rear wheels.
While its drivetrain is very much standard, the rest of the Viper ACR is anything but. Dodge begins with a revised chassis that includes aluminum coil-over Bilstein race shocks, 3 inches of ride height adjustment, and 10-way rebound and compression adjustability. The front springs are rated at a fairly stiff 600 pounds per inch, while the rears are borderline intolerable at 1,300 pounds per inch. Finally, Dodge tweaked the alignment, giving it 1.4 degrees more negative camber to allow maximum rubber contact in the corners.
Brembo Carbon Ceramic Matrix units handle the braking duties. Up front, the Viper ACR has 15.4-inch two-piece rotors, while the rear has 14.2-inch two-piece discs. The front discs get the squeeze from six-piston Brembo calipers and the rears use four-piston calipers. These brakes not only resist fade lap after lap, but they also reduce the unsprung weight, which is an oft-forgotten factor in automotive agility.
Speaking of agility, the rubber meets the road via Kumho Ecsta V720 tires that Doge had specially designed for the Viper ACR. These tires measure 295/25R19 up front and 335/30R19 out back, making them the largest combined rubber contact patch on any production car. In fact, these specially developed tires allow the Viper ACR to shave 1.5 seconds off its lap time with racing-only tires installed.
The final piece in making the Viper ACR a certified badass is its aerodynamic kit. This insane aero kit includes a 73.85-inch-wide adjustable dual-element rear wing, a carbon-fiber diffuser, an exclusive SRT-developed hood with removable louvers, a detachable front-splitter extension, and four dive planes. Altogether, this kit produces an outlandish 1 ton of downforce at 177 mph.
All of these racing components allow this street-legal track killer hold up to 1.5 g in the corners. That, my fellow gearheads, is bordering on unbelievable.
Dodge didn’t stop at just making the ACR a mean track machine, it also added a little something to the interior. Alcantara suede coats the instrument panel cluster hood, the lower instrument panel, and the front armrest panels. The steering wheel, which is exclusive to the ACR, is also wrapped in Alcantara, as are the seat inserts. There is also a dash plaque made from carbon fiber.
Buyers can customize their ACRs using the “1 of 1” customization program that Dodge offers for the Viper.
The 2016 Dodge Viper ACR will start production in the third quarter of 2015, but there are no pricing details available yet. I would expect a price of at least $150,000, maybe even upward of $175,000.