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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Subject: GTS as a Daily Driver

o.k., I really need some honest feedback from you folks and please keep the Vette bashing to a minimum. I currently own a 2002 ZO6 that I have enjoyed for about a year now. My dream car is the Viper GTS and I got a call from an auto broker telling me about a 2001 with 12K miles on it.

I really need to know if there are any quality issues with the 2001's that I should look for? Can rely on this car as a daily driver? I live in Vegas and it can get monster hot here in the summer, will I have to worry about overheating?

Also, will this thing beat me up on 3-7hr road trips? What about clearance issues on speed bumps and steep parking garage entrances? Can I still haul groceries, luggage and/or packages in the hatch? Does the AC stay pretty cool?

I know these sound like niggling issues, but they are all conveniences I enjoy in my Vette and I want to know how much I am compromising. I know the Viper is basically a slightly more comfortable street legal race car, but I guess I've gotten to be fat and cushier in my taste and want to step up in performance and looks. Thanks in advance for the feedback.

p.s. Any opinions on long term (10-14yr) luxury car financing if I only plan to keep the car a couple of years?
 

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The only thing which comes to mind about a 2001 is that the water pump has a plastic impeller. I've never clearly figured out if it was all 01's or some of them. Very few people have problems, but when they do, it's bad. That being said, I've driven the hell out of my 01 in Florida summers (call it an almost-daily-driver) and haven't had any trouble. In my opinion it is something to be aware of, but not anything to really freak out about.

Whether you'll be comfortable on road trips is purely a matter of personal preference, but I've done many very long drives, including a 12-hour trip, all without problems or complaints, and my wife drove ours for 9 hours once and had no complaints. A stock setup will clear speedbumps and most driveway entrances fine as long as you take it very slow.

The AC is mediocre. I've read some convincing things that it's really a poor vacuum problem which can be resolved by adding a vac resevoir, but I haven't done that.

I won't hesitate to take it out for a one or two hour drive in 100+ heat. Heck, I drove it around for over an hour today it the temp is about 104 right now.
 

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Stow-N-Go, Baby!
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1) The car is very reliable.
2) The seats are very comfortable for highway cruising.
3) The car is not the best for driving on poorly maintained city streets. It will be a jarring experience. But your Z06 probably is jarring, too.
4) It scrapes easily on the lower front fascia lip and, on rare epic potholes, the side sills.
5) If you are remotely obsessive, you will worry about the Viper whenever you park it.
6) The Viper is very expensive to fix for body work. Even minor accidents often total the vehicle from a money perspective.
7) Several folks here use their Viper as a daily driver with no complaints

All things considered, the Corvette is probably a better daily driver.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the great replies. I, of course, always have more bonehead questions:

How much luggage space do I have in the car? Does it carry a spare and if so, could I gain space by just carrying a quick fill kit like in my ZO6? Is the lower front fascia pretty durable or will it crack with a good impact? My Vette is pretty much a plastic, dent-proof vehicle can I expect the same from the parking lot wars?

How is the stock security system and is there a huge theft or vandalism concern? Would insulating the exhaust system help with interior heat? Finally, would an X-pipe help out with the UPS truck sound or would I need to address the mufflers?

I am leaning hard towards pulling the trigger on this deal. I got my ass smoked out here during the SEMA show by a stock GTS and an ACR and I am the type that never forgets. As they say, if you can't beat em'.........
 

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Interior heat really isn't a problem.

To be honest, I don't recall seeing much about Vipers being stolen. They kind of stick out in a crowd. However, the stock security system is nothing special. A few people here have experienced vandalism problems, but I wouldn't say it's anything out of the ordinary.

You'd have to really whack a curb good and hard to damage the fascia. Most frequently-driven Vipers have scrapes all over the bottom of the fascia, but you'll only see it if you're laying on the ground, or it's up on a lift. With the rest of the car, paint damage is more likely than body damage from parking-lot dings, but the factory paint job on this car is exceedingly expensive, and a comparable repaint will cost you an arm & a leg, too. The various parts of the body are made from SMC (a layered composite similar to fiberglass), plastic, and fiberglass. As such, much of it can be chipped with a sufficently hard impact. I have a few nicks in my hood from stones thrown up on-track. Most people do. It definitely doesn't have a Tupperware-grade resiliency, but I wouldn't say it's any worse than any other regular car.

If you like the V8 sound, you'll probably never like the Viper exhaust note, no matter what exahust system you buy. The sound varies considerably, but they're all sort of raspy. Some have downright awful sounds at specific RPMs. On the other hand, track that bitch and you might just grow to love it. Personally I think the best sounding Viper exhaust is straight pipe.
 

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what Schillinger said...
go for it.....I drive mine more than most and have no problem at all.

just do it.
 

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Pull the trigger. You will not regret it. As a former Vette owner, all I can say is you will instantly appreciate that you have the superior machine. Be prepared for some enmity from some of the more insecure of the gold-chained set you left (this from personal experience.)
For comfort, and especially if you're over 6 feet, consider a seat lowering kit. Be sure your AC is charged as it will help keep cabin heat down.
And, oh by the way, I like your Viper Alley nametag. /images/graemlins/supergrin.gif
 

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The hatch in a GTS has more space than your Vette. You can gain even more by removing the spare, but the occasion where you need to shouldn't occur too often.
 

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Vette Traitor said:
Is the lower front fascia pretty durable or will it crack with a good impact? My Vette is pretty much a plastic, dent-proof vehicle can I expect the same from the parking lot wars?
I drive in NYC. Trust me, you WILL scrape the bottom of your fascia! However, I've hit it pretty hard from unexpected road "dips", and other than paint, there's no problem.

Vette Traitor said:
How is the stock security system and is there a huge theft or vandalism concern? Would insulating the exhaust system help with interior heat? Finally, would an X-pipe help out with the UPS truck sound or would I need to address the mufflers?
Like others have posted, you just cannot get a V8 sound out of a V10. There are, however, many variations that may result in a sound that appeals to you. Best to go to some cruise and listen to other Vipers and figure out which combo (or removal) works for you (headers, HF cats, cat back systems, straight pipes, X-pipe).

Vette Traitor said:
I am leaning hard towards pulling the trigger on this deal. I got my ass smoked out here during the SEMA show by a stock GTS and an ACR and I am the type that never forgets. As they say, if you can't beat em'.........
I have a 2001 Roadster and have had virtually no problems, even when I added a supercharger. All in all, I think your Z06 will be a bit more comfortable to drive (in a Lincoln Continental kind of way), but your DRIVING experience in a Viper is just not comparable! You won't be disappointed. You WILL wonder what held you back for so long. /images/graemlins/supergrin.gif
 
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