I might be wrong, but here is what I saw this past Sat. and it could be because it was on gen 3s, but none the less. A gen 3 with just headers gained 2 rwhp and lost about 15+ (maybe even 20+) rwtq. :down: I don't know which type of header it was but all I gotta say is even if the headers were free, I would not take um. It might be different for gen 2. Just thought I would bring that up.
But, if you decide to go with heads...I would go to NO ONE ELSE but GREG GOOD. :bowdown: I have pictures of some heads he did for my car that getting put in. I will psot the picts tomorrow. For the quality of work he does, I would not go any where else. I will have my car dynoed next week sometime and post the dyno sheet as well.
In my opinion, most performance gains achieved with headers are lost when a full exhaust system is installed behind them. For example, when I use to drag race my 70 Cuda', full exhaust (no cats) I would run 12.4 or 12.5. But with open headers she would drop down to 12.2 -12.3 range. The exhaust on this car was large high flow mufflers(3 inch ins and outs) not cheap glass packs. I have seen this played out many times on the strip with other cars. The Viper while very special car, is just another car with a push rod engine, but with 10 cylinders. Also, the Viper's large displacement motor (488 plus cubes) and V-10 configuration with low compression does not achieve high RPMs. From my experience, headers tend to benefit high RPM motors. That is not to say no performance is gained, but for the high dollar investment for Viper headers, I believe money is better spent on heads. All production cars can benefit from increased breathing on both the intake and exhaust side of factory heads. Most racing machine shops can improve the overall efficacy of air flow though your Viper's motor. I have searched many web sites that are considered Viper tuners and the too charge big time money for work on your heads. I am currently getting my head redone this winter by a shop that does all motors from grocery getter to Joe Amato's top fuel heads. The amount of quality work that this shop has done for the small amount of money they have charged is amazing. There are deals out there if you look, and don't get caught up in the hype of "Tuners" and magic bullets. Remember the Viper is the best performance car ever built, period. But it posses no magic, it is just a well designed product of Chrysler engineers. But like everything else in life there is room for improvement.
I did h/c first and then put headers and catback on with hi flo cats and gained 18 rwhp and 1 rwtq. Sure sounded a hell of alot better. The "ideal progression" would be to get the headers, but if you want power go with the heads.