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Dodge Viper making a comeback next year?

by Ronan Glon

Dodge has a big surprise in store for Viper vans.

Dodge slayed the Viper last August and converted the factory that built the model into a museum. At the time, we reported the nameplate could return on a slightly different type of car. Recent rumors shed insight into what the born-again model will look like.

Car & Driver learned Dodge will re-invent the Viper on a lightweight spaceframe chassis. It will rely on weight-saving materials like carbon fiber and aluminum to keep weight in check. The line-up will include both coupe and convertible models.

The Viper's V10 engine won't return. Instead, the sixth-generation model will become the first to use a V8. The naturally-aspirated, aluminum-block unit will make about 550 horsepower in its most basic state of tune and close to 700 in high-end models. It will again be mounted between the firewall and the front axle to give the car a front-mid-engined configuration.

Dodge will allegedly introduce the next-generation Viper during next year's Detroit auto show. The timing would coincide with the 30th anniversary of the original model's debut. It would also let Dodge steal the spotlight from Chevrolet's mid-engined Corvette. Sales won't begin until 2020 at the earliest, though. Look for a base price in the vicinity of $100,000.

Of course, no one at Dodge has talked about the next-generation Viper, let alone confirmed the report. We'll have to be patient to find out if there's any truth in the rumors.