The 90s was temultous period for our country. AOL was taking PC world by storm, Seattle was producing some very popular music, and cafe based sitcoms about friends were at an all time high. One cultural phenomenom from the the 90s that often goes overlooked is the Dodge Viper.
Debuting to great apllause in 1991, and reaching cult vehicle celebrity status by the end of the decade, the Viper re-imagined what a super sport vehicle could be in a modern age. Originally conceptualized as an update of the classic American sports car, with some obvious Italian influences, the Viper made loud and fast popular for a post Miami Vice generation. the rest of the Dodge lineup eventually joined stylistic forces with the Viper concept, and in recent years the Dodge brand has become synonymous with classic styling and updating of American muscle. The Viper, like any popular sports vehicle, inspired many to offer after market souped up versions, adding luxury and power to an already flawless base. The most popular of these, or at least the most well known, was the Devon GTX.
A project of automotive passion for entrepreneur Scott Devon, the Devon GTX added more upscale fit-and-finish to the Viper base, while also upping the engineering prowess under the hood. The Viper recieved an entirely reconceptualized body with exotic upwards-swiveling doors and a bi-tone chrome/matte finish, along with a plush and indulgent (in a good way) cabin. The output also increased exponentially, with Viper’s 8.4-liter V10 producing 650 horsepower in Devon GTX trim. The end product was not only a sleeker exterior packaging and feel, but a much faster vehicle as a whole, with resulting lap records at Willow Springs and Laguna Seca.
In the end the Viper brand, at least as we know it, faced its demise in 2010. This meant an end for the Venom GTX, which is now an incredibly rare collectors item. So rare in fact, that only two models currently exist, one of them being up for auction this weekend at Barrett-Jackson in Scottsdale.
The Viper is in the process of being re-conceptualized at Dodge, and will no doubts take inspiration from the Devon GTX. The original GTX, however, is a two of a kind luxury performance machine, one which we will not see any more of. Phoenix Valley auto enthusiasts and collectors can make their bid at ownership this weekend in Scottsdale. Be prepared for a starting bid of $500k, with the possibility of the selling price going well over one million.