Supercar Showdown: 2016 Dodge Viper vs. 2016 Corvette Z06
2016 is a good year for supercars and muscle cars from all brands; especially Dodge and Chevy. The 2016 Viper you see sitting on Dodge Miami dealer lots is the best Viper that’s ever been produced, and same goes for the 2016 Corvette Z06. Both of these models are insanely fast, insanely good looking, and very expensive. But, it’s difficult to determine which one will reign supreme, especially since they are basically neck and neck in performance.
Some would say it boils down to preference, but there is a difference when it boils down to these two vehicles, and the Viper ACR is the one that has it. But will that difference be enough for the Viper to outperform the Z06?
The Corvette Z06 has 3 trim levels, the 1LZ, 2LZ, and 3LZ. Whereas the Viper has 4 trim levels: the SRT Coupe, GT Coupe, GTS Coupe, and ACR Coupe. For both models, it doesn’t matter what trim is chosen. The engine remains the same, but the Viper ACR has some key performance features compared to the other trims.
The only difference between the trim levels for the Z06 is the price and some aesthetic changes. So, let’s take a look at what the Viper ACR and Z06 offer.
Regardless of trim level, both of these vehicles have a design that looks really good, and both designs were engineered to be performance oriented.
As far as trim levels go, this Viper trim is the one that looks closest to the Corvette, and has a few more performance oriented features tacked on. But, let’s start with the basics. The primary enemy of speed is curb weight and poor design, which is why the Viper ACR has neither of those things. The Viper ACR is sitting at a curb weight of 3,374 lbs with an overall length of 14.6 feet. That makes this one light and quick snake; you need lightning reflexes too match what type of speed a supercar designed like this will have.
That design all starts with the unforgettable look of the Viper. Signature curves, broad shoulders, and plenty of familiar lines run across the Viper, letting you know exactly which supercar you’re looking it. This design isn’t only striking, but it’s also practical. The modern design of the Viper has been engineered for maximum aerodynamic efficiency and high-speed balance, allowing precise and efficient handling at higher speeds.
The hood of the Viper is made out of a single slab of carbon-fiber, along with various other parts of the supercar. The presence of carbon is why the Viper is such a light car; and the performance designed air extractors on the hood help keep the engine cool while going down the road. The center air intake is there to maximize performance, and is part of the primary reason why this car can fly down the road.
With the ACR trim, the Viper also gets a few key performance features, like an impressive extreme wing rear spoiler and front splitter assembly. This spoiler might look funny to you, but it allows the Viper ACR to perform and handle even better than the Z06 at higher speeds.
Much like the Viper, the Corvette Z06 was built based on its previous designs, and it also has the best design yet. The Z06 weighs in at 3,534 lbs, which is almost 200 lbs heavier than the Viper. A negligible amount in the sedan world, but this is the supercar league; and even 200 lbs can be the difference between victory or defeat. It also comes in at 14.8 feet long, the two inches in terms of length is insignificant, but it’s still two inches more the Z06’s engine needs to push down the road.
For performance oriented features, the design of the Z06 also has a carbon-fiber roof and hood, with titanium intake valves on the hood to help keep the engine cool and increase performance. The frame of the Z06 is a hydrofromed aluminum frame, which is the ‘Vette’s way of attempting to shed some pounds. Rounding off the design is a slightly adjustable rear spoiler, but unlike with the Viper ACR, the aerodynamic tuning ends there.
The Key Difference
For the Viper ACR, there are ten different aerodynamic components that are either adjustable or removable. These aerodynamic additions might bump the price up, but are sure to provide better performance since they can be even further calibrated for aerodynamic perfection. This versatile aerodynamic tuning and lighter weight means the Viper ACR will have better speed and performance in the long-run after the torque competition at the starting line is over.
Engines and Performance
The heart of the Dodge Viper ACR is the handcrafted, all-aluminum 8.4-liter V10 engine. This engine is able to put out 645 horsepower and twist out 600 pound-feet of torque. These are absolutely monstrous numbers for an engine, even by today’s standards. 645 horsepower powering a aerodynamic car that weighs in at 3,374 lbs makes for one intense thrill-ride.
The engine inside the Corvette Z06 is a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 engine that is able to put out 5 more horsepower than the Viper, and turn out 50 more torque. This 5 more horsepower and 50 more torque is sure to be offset by the extra 200 lbs it has tacked on compared to the Viper. Even aerodynamics and engines can’t help shave off time when it comes to base curb weight.
The results? Both vehicles are clocking in with a 0-60 time of around 3 seconds, the Viper ACR obviously being a bit faster in the long-run thanks to the reduction in weight and precise aerodynamic tuning. 0-60 in around 3 seconds is the best time any car has ever seen, and certainly the best time for both of these models.
Dodge and Chevy both need to pat themselves on the back. They’ve both been able to craft vehicles that are styled to perfection, in terms of performance and aesthetic quality, and the engines that have been upgraded and revamped over the years have led to supercars that can hit a 0-60 time of 3 seconds. Both companies created landmarks in 2016 in the supercar market, but only one is able to be considered winner.
The Winner is… Viper.
When it gets this close in terms of performance, every little advantage counts. Especially when it comes to supercars. This means that along with the 10 precision aero-tuning components provided by the Viper, the 200 lbs in weight reduction is going to give the Viper that edge over the Z06 in the long-run.
Furthermore, the Viper ACR is a true throwback to the older days of performance sports cars. It’s as traditional as it can get; it’s engine isn’t supercharged, there is no electronic chassis, and it comes paired with a six-speed manual with no automatic transmission available. In first gear, it’s able to go over 60 mph, and performs just as well as the Z06 does with an automatic transmission. That means, when the Z06 is equipped with a manual transmission, the Viper can actually outperform the Z06. Seeing as the Z06 0-60 time would be a little slower with a manual that it would be with an automatic.
Is the Viper ACR a little more expensive? Yes, and it might be a matter of personal opinion, but when getting into prices between $89,000 and $120,000 does 30k really make that big of a difference?