That the 2016 Dodge Viper ACR is an amazing, track-ready and –focused machine is not very noteworthy. The Viper’s performance cred stands out in a club’s parking lot like a lion among the wildebeests.
Listen To The Interview From Inside The Viper ACR on CarStories.com
All Vipers are equipped with 8.4L V10s that make 645hp and 600 lb. ft. of torque. But the ACR is a bit different—it makes few, if any, concessions to street use. It comes equipped with Bilstein coilover racing shocks, two-piece carbon ceramic 15” (!) front rotors with six-piston calipers, a massive adjustable dual-element carbon fiber rear wing and Kumho racing tires specifically designed for the Viper ACR that are about 14” wide in the rear. They’re also faster than Hoosier R6s around the track, and yes, street-legal.
In fact, somehow, the rest of the ACR is also technically street legal. It has lights and airbags and even a nav system and stereo. But it generates more downforce and power than the GTLM Viper racecar. And the first thing that SRT dynamicist (he tunes all the components that have to do with chassis dynamics—steering, handling, etc on SRT products) Erich Heuschele recommends you do with one is “take it to the race track.” If you’re interested in having some fun on the street, there are other Vipers for that. The ACR is a track weapon.
It has such high levels of grip and performance that the car takes a long time to master. It isn’t one of those cars that after two or three track days you’ve mastered it and reached the car’s limit. You’ll continue getting faster and you’ll enjoy it more and more each time for years to come.
However, numbers and platitudes can only convey so much information. The Viper ACR’s most notable accolade is a jaded automotive journalist’s response while riding shotgun. CarStories.com Podcast host A.J. Gordon is noticeably giddy as he calls the play-by-play around Southern California’s Willow Springs Raceway.
The ACR gets over 140mph by the end of the front straight and can pull over 1.5gs through turns. According to a laughing-out-loud Gordon, “There can not be any more excitement I’ve ever had in a car.