Thread: Potential New Owner

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  1. #1

    Default Potential New Owner

    First of all, I'd like to say hi and introduce myself. Hi. I'm Michael.

    OK, now that that's out of the way... I am teetering on the cusp of Viper ownership and I have been doing a little research on this forum and the general internet and I had a few questions that I hope you can answer. I want to find a good example of an unmodified 1994 or earlier RT/10 (not bothered by door handles, windows, a roof, etc.). I found an excellent car in Michigan a little while ago, but since it's a thousand miles away, I had no way of even seeing it. The last time I even saw a Viper was two years ago at New Jersey Motorsports Park.

    How do you go about test driving (or even seeing) an RT/10 to know if it's something you can be interested in actually owning? I've owned some pretty neat vehicles over the years (1992 Mustang GT convertible, 2000 Z3, 1994 Miata, 2008 Buell Lightning). These have all been convertibles (well, except the bike), most have two seats, and the more luxury I take away (like no radio in my Miata) the more I seem to enjoy the car. Also, I like horsepower... so a Miata with an LS-1 might be a good car for me, but as long as the Viper is reasonably comfortable, then I'd like to buy one.

    If I buy one of these, I intend to drive it. A lot. I put 20,000 miles on that Buell in just two years and I'd like to do some of the same kind of driving as I did on that motorcycle (commuting, going to the store, riding in mountains, driving around town for no reason, etc.). If it's worth $5,000 in five years and it's got 100,000 miles on it when I'm finished, then I will be happy. But a lot of you describe the car as "brutal" in that thread about low mileage Vipers. What do you mean? Just too much power? Does the suspension make the 350Z's ride seem plush? Do they really get hotter than a laser on the Sun? Are they so loud that set of car alarms on city streets? I'd like to find one that's a Boeing 737-hop away and road trip it back to Maryland.

    I love every year that Dodge made this car, but I like the very first few years the most. This is good, because that's also the generation I can comfortably afford. It really does look like Chrysler locked the lawyers and the accountants in a dungeon for a few months while they designed it (don't worry, they fed them!). I appreciate that. As long as I don't hate myself for owning one. But there are a ton of you on this forum and you all seem to love these things!

    Thanks in advance for your input! I'm glad to be aboard. I hope to have one of these things in a couple weeks.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Potential New Owner

    Well welcome to the forum.

    as to your first question, it's very common for buyers to purchase the car sight unseen (aside from pictures) and will rely on the vibes they're getting from the seller. It seems to be a good idea to buy from a forum member in most cases. I bought my GTS without test driving it.. i did have the luxury of going there to look at it and having the seller drive me around in it.. but wouldn't let me drive it.. which i understand.. when I sell mine there wont be test pilots.

    There are people that daily drive their vipers.. it's not really a big deal, with proper maintenance they're just like any other car when it comes down to it.. maintain it..

    brutal. yes. they are brutal to drive. they're unrefined, lack amenities, and are terrible on fuel. you need to take every curb at an angle and the GEN 1's and most of tthe GEN 2's lack a lot of safety features that you probably had in your other vehicles you've listed.

    that being said.. it's hard not to smile every time I get in it. I've had several high powered mustangs, camaros, MR2 turbos etc.. nothing compares. nothing.

  3. #3
    Viper Owner
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    Default Re: Potential New Owner

    Nowadays there are faster, nicer, whatever cars out there than the Viper. Specially a gen I.
    But, as posted above, nothing out there will give you that 'experience'.
    The Viper is not for everyone, it is for crazy people.
    Gen I as a daily driver is really crazy. That would be like a Cobra for a daily driver. You would have to live where the weather is never bad.

  4. #4
    Viper Owner
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    Default Re: Potential New Owner

    I have a1994 R/t 10..The car is not brutal...Easy to drive and we find it comfortable on trips. Gets good gas millage if you stay out of it. Mine is tight, no rattles and handles awesome. It will get more attention than a naked woman!

  5. #5
    Viper Club of America Business Office Viper Club HQ's Avatar
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    Default Re: Potential New Owner

    Welcome!
    You may want to contact the VCA VA/MD area president John Mavridis depending on where you live in Maryland.
    Email [email protected] for questions and be sure to read up in the new owners section area.

  6. #6
    Viper Owner
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    Default Re: Potential New Owner

    I agree with Dan. Having owned a 94 RT/10 and a 01 GTS, I would say the 94 was more comfortable. I drove my 94 from Houston to West Virginia and back. No issues. It was a wonderful experience. And when I tried, I got EXCELLENT mileage on the highway, 21-28mpg. But there is no fun in mpgs.

    If you see one you like, have a knowledgeable fellow Viper owner, one with the Generation you are looking at as every generation has its qwerks, to have a look for you. Or you could call one of the trusted viper dealers around the country to look for one for you. The pre-purchase inspection is key. I would look to get a copy of the Viper buyers guide. They are pricey, but people will often share them to potential buyers.

  7. #7
    Viper Owner
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    Default Re: Potential New Owner

    Oh, and its nothing like you have ever driven. Its pure bliss and can be a pure race car on the streets.

    It will have some downsides, If you truly love the car you will look past all of its flaws and look at it for what it truly is, a wonderful driving experience. Good luck with purchase. I hope to see new 94 pictures on this site soon

  8. #8
    Viper Owner
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    Default Re: Potential New Owner

    i have a 1995 RT10 and it is awesome to drive, where ever you go, people are looking at viper, especially to those people who are driving vettes and porches, you'll be surprise!!.

  9. #9
    Viper Owner
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    Default Re: Potential New Owner

    Early one's need new gaskets I believe and if it's on original tires then you will need those the day you buy the car as well.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Potential New Owner

    Folks' definition of daily driver must differ from mine. I might drive mine a lot (as I truly do in the spring and fall when it ain't raining) but to really use it as a grocery getter wouldn't parking lots exact a toll on an RT/10?

  11. #11

    Default Re: Potential New Owner

    Awesome! Thank you everybody for the input. There was information in there that I did not find just browsing through the forum (it's a gigantic forum!). I think I am a little crazy (I jumped a deer once on the Buell riding from western PA to New York... at night. In the rain. And I'd do it again!) but I do have a regular-people car (IS-300) that I can drive from time to time if I need to do reasonable things like haul people around or drive in the snow.

    I don't expect anyone to let me test drive one, but hopefully there can be a pre-purchase inspection. I am stoked. If I can go through with it, I'll let you guys know what happens. Money isn't an issue for a Gen I thankfully, but there's this nagging part of my brain that keeps telling me "Now isn't the responsible time to buy one". But really, the responsible thing to do is never buy one, and that stinks.

    Cheers!

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Potential New Owner

    With prices what they are, if you buy it and don't like it, you'll pretty much break even. The worst part is paying King O'mallys taxes registering the car.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Potential New Owner

    Quote Originally Posted by mtmclaughlin View Post
    Awesome! Thank you everybody for the input. There was information in there that I did not find just browsing through the forum (it's a gigantic forum!). I think I am a little crazy (I jumped a deer once on the Buell riding from western PA to New York... at night. In the rain. And I'd do it again!) but I do have a regular-people car (IS-300) that I can drive from time to time if I need to do reasonable things like haul people around or drive in the snow.

    I don't expect anyone to let me test drive one, but hopefully there can be a pre-purchase inspection. I am stoked. If I can go through with it, I'll let you guys know what happens. Money isn't an issue for a Gen I thankfully, but there's this nagging part of my brain that keeps telling me "Now isn't the responsible time to buy one". But really, the responsible thing to do is never buy one, and that stinks.

    Cheers!
    Live your life with less regrets. If you can afford one without compromising your lifestyle. Do it

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