Last month a report surfaced from a reputable magazine indicating that Fiat Chrysler was working on a new Dodge Viper set to be released in 2021.
Car and Driver, the publication that ran the report, even went so far as to say “trust us: A new Dodge Viper is happening,” in the body of the story – so we were fairly confident that this bit of good news could actually be true. Today we learned that wasn’t the case, though, with FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne telling Road & Track that a new Dodge Viper is “not in the plan,” for Dodge.
At this point you might be saying to yourself “well yeah, of course the CEO isn’t going to spill the beans!” and you’d probably be right if this were any other automaker but FCA. The company basically laid out every single model it will bring to market between now and 2022 during a special presentation in Italy today. If the folks at FCA were working on a new Viper, it’s almost certain the company would’ve detailed it in today’s presentation.
Marchionne also revealed the Viper never really made any money for FCA. That point is crucial, because Marchionne is keen on making FCA one of the leanest and most profitable car companies in the US by 2022. Seems like a bad time to reintroduce a car that never made them any money, then, don’t you think?
There is some good Dodge-related news to come from today’s presentation, however. Marchionne confirmed a next-generation Dodge Charger and Challenger are on the way – but they won’t use a version of Alfa Romeo’s Giorgio rear-wheel-drive platform as a previous report indicated. Instead, the two cars will tap a heavily revised version of the LX platform they currently use. The LX architecture is rather old, having originally been developed in Daimler-Chrysler days, but Marchionne promises the overhaul will make it so buyers barely even recognize it’s the same platform. That sounds good to us – the big old LX platform helps to give the Charger and Challenger some of their charm. And besides, the Challenger still puts up a good fight in sales against the much newer Mustang and Camaro, so consumers clearly have no problem with its underpinnings.
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