The short version, according to conventional wisdom: if bad-ass looks are your number one criterion, the GTS is the easy choice. If you like that body style but have to have an open roof, then it's the RT/10. Another factor that may be relevant is that if you know you plan on doing forced induction to substantially raise the power, a pre-00 GTS or RT/10 has forged pistons, which will allow you to do so much less expensively. And finally, the SRT-10 makes the earlier cars feel like a heap in most respects; it has a much nicer interior, and it is much improved in most all mechanical aspects (especially the brakes, which are 100% better). And with the debut of the SRT-10 Coupe you can have a vert or a hardtop. BUT most consider the SRT a major step back in the looks department. Although it does grow on you. As a former GTS owner who was not at all happy with the redesign in '03, I have to say that once I drove an SRT, it was difficult to imagine buying another GTS.
On more than one occasion, I have read opinions that the GTS looks better than the 2006 srt coupe. For the life of me, I cannot figure out why someone would have this opinion. To me, the GTS and all 2nd generation Vipers look bulbous, round and quite silly compared to the new one. In my eyes, the new generation Viper is absolutely beautiful and far better looking than the previous generation. It is sleeker, more refined and more aggressive looking than the round, bulbous looking 2nd generation Viper. I realize that my opinion is different than some because, like I said, I have seen the same complaints before on Viper forums. I just don't get it and I wanted to express the opinion that I and some others must have. As far as I am concerned, the only reason to buy an older one would be to save money. Heffner changes the pistons to forged pistons when installing a twin turbo in the new Vipers. I am sure that Hennessey does the same.
I decided on an almost new GTS over a year ago rather than a new srt. I have driven all 3 and had, (have), the ability to own which ever one I choose. IMO the GTS is just as fast stock as the srt in a straight line, the interior is almost as good considering all viper interior's lack a ton of comfort, and looks so much better/exotic than any of the srt's. The GTS does not brake or handle anywhere near as good as the gen III's, but that can be remedied easy enough.
I've ridden in all three. I've driven all three. If I was going to buy right now, I'd choose an SRT. I despised the SRT when it first came out, but after I saw one in person, the despise quickly turned to lust. Im a dedicated GTS and RT fan, but the SRT is now in that line-up; and well, when I really start thinking about it, the SRT is just a better car. Dont get me wrong, the GTS and RT are beautiful cars (especially the GTS), but the SRT has REALLY grown on me. Lower an SRT vert, throw a hardtop on it and its right there in the looks department with the GTS, IMO.
You cant go wrong with any of them. Just choose what you like and the one that fits you best.
I had a 96 GTS and loved everything about it, until recently, I saw a black SRT and fell in love with the lines and the looks. Don't get me wrong, I still love the looks of the GTS, but in my book, SRT all the way. Plus performance wise I believe the new ones are alot better. With my GTS the braking was horrible, no anti-lock brakes. Had a couple of scares on the freeway when someone pulled out in front of me. The braking on the SRT is right up in line with all the exotics. Vote for SRT ( Hopefull owner of one soon)
In my experience, when you make them fast, I mean really fast, the GTS is much more solid feeling than the SRT. The GTS exudes confidence, while the SRT is just twitchy and unpredictable. At 4 digit power levels, I feel much better behind the wheel of a Gen2. That's why BR is a GTS.
I like all the viper models but to me nothing has had more people breakin thier necks than a gts, especially the 96 B/w The Srt's are great lookin cars, but alot of the ruffness and soul of the car was lost when it was redesigned. After driving a stock srt it felt like I was driving a corvette in a way. The gts has that muscle car feel which no car has had in a long time.
Guess its all in what your taste likes! I like the looks of all 3 but after driving the GTS I didn't llike how hot the car got inside. Even with air on it was uncomfortable and it was only 80deg out. Being in Vegas that's almost like a winter day so I figured summers would be hell!
I really wanted the vert anyway and fell in love with the SRT. I cant go anywhere without attracting all kinds of attention. In fact today I actually went with a buddy to a Chevy dealership to see a car there for him and all the sales guys were checking it out - it was kinda funny.
All 3 look great - its just gonna be a matter of your own personal style. If you are going to mod it and drag race it then the GTS definitely. But if you are going to mod and just want a fast car any of them will be fun!
Good luck on your decision!
2007 Mercedes Renntech S65 700hp/850tq
2001 Porsche 996TT 600hp Imagine Auto & Techart Body w/GT2 wing
2002 Saleen Vert w/Kenne Bell 2.2 (FOR SALE!)
2006 Infiniti QX56 for the practical stuff!
I went and looked at the 06 coupe today and all I can say is wow. It was unreal. The dealership also had a black convert. but I liked the coupes lines better. Someone on here was saying that you could get like 10k off msrp is that true for the 06's or just the 05's? Thanks.
Contact Ringgold Dodge in Georgia. Ask for Mike Robbins. I believe he is a member of this forum and has a list of Vipers in the classifieds "for sale by dealers" section. Their phone number is (706) 935-2328. Mike is giving me a great price on an '06 coupe. I'm sure he will hook you up as well. I believe his username here is blebyu or something similar.
The AutoGuide.com network consists of the largest network of enthusiast-owned enthusiast-operated automotive communities.
AutoGuide.com provides the latest car reviews, auto show coverage, new car prices, and automotive news. The AutoGuide network operates more than 100 automotive forums where our users consult peers for shopping information and advice, and share opinions as a community.