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Will Dodge Bring Back the Viper as a Mid-Engine Car?

With the long-awaited arrival of the new mid-engine C8 Corvette, fans and critics are left trying to form their opinions. Having a mid-engine seems to be one of the key markers that set sports cars apart from supercars, so they beg the question: will another American supercar like the Dodge Viper get a new mid-engine redesign? Or will this iconic V10-toting supercar stay off of the production line?

Benefits of mid-engine performance

The engine is one of the most substantial components of a car, so that placement can affect a lot. Having a front-engine vehicle is the standard for most gasoline-powered cars. Mid-engine cars have a majority of the weight behind the driver, giving the car a better ability to handle. This could benefit the Dodge Viper a lot because the 8.3L V10 engine sitting under the hood is pretty heavy.

A new 2020 Corvette engine on display
The engine of the new mid-engine 2020 Corvette Stingray | DAVID MCNEW/AFP via Getty Images

The Viper itself is known less than affectionately by its nickname of “widow maker” because it is so hard to handle. Reengineering the car to become mid-engine could potentially enhance the car’s performance around corners as well as typical street driving, making it a better, safer option for many buyers.

A mid-engine Dodge Viper

The history of the Dodge Viper isn’t like most vehicles. This iconic Icar borders between being an American muscle car and being a supercar, but that isn’t the only odd thing about it. The Viper has been discontinued from production twice so far, making a strong and swift comeback after the first time being pulled from production. When Dodge announced that the production of the Viper would once again end many fans were skeptical.

Ralph Gilles, president and CEO of SRT Brand and Motorsports Chrysler | Mario Tama

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Only time will tell

There have been several concepts for a mid-engine Dodge Viper designed by private parties, but if Dodge is considering one they haven’t let us know. It could be that they are keeping things under wraps because the Viper is out of production, or perhaps they will sooner consider converting one of their more popular production sports cars into a mid-engine muscle car.

The new Dodge Viper SRT is on display during the first day of press previews at the New York International Automobile Show
The Dodge Viper SRT | STAN HONDA/AFP via Getty Images

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The Dodge Viper’s most iconic style is the elongated hood, so it’s hard to imagine a world where the V10 engine would sit behind the driver. With all of the criticism that the mid-engine Corvette received it may take several years for the muscle car industry to analyze sales and to see if it’s worth the cost of research and design.