There are lots of ways to measure the performance of a car, but there's only one that is quintessentially American: the quarter mile. And while we've already seen a proper comparison test or two that puts the new (and also quintessentially American) SRT Viper on a racetrack, we've yet to see what it can do when put in the hands of a proper drag racer for an entire day of tire-burning performance testing. Now we do.
And so the $64,000 question is, How does it perform? Pretty well indeed, recording a best time of 11.1 seconds at 127.4 miles per hour, wearing street-legal drag radials with the boys from Drag Times behind the wheel. That run included 3.1 seconds for the big Viper to hit 60, and it took just 7.1 seconds to reach 100. Impressive performance, to be sure. But those figures need to be put in context for the full picture... in other words, how does its acceleration compare to such high-horsepower rivals as the Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 and Ford Mustang Shelby GT500?
Well, without running all three of these muscle machines down the same track on the same day with the same driver, it's not going to be a fair comparison. Plus, the Corvette in particular has had several models years for drivers to keep plugging away for the best possible results. That said, the Viper's 11.1 seconds at 127.4 mph is well shy of Drag Times' best recorded (and verified) ZR1 time slip of 10.332 seconds at 132.74 mph, and there are a total of seven documented ZR1 runs quicker than the Viper's.
As for the GT500, the best recorded run on file at Drag Times is 11.570 seconds at 124.3 mph. So, it's not as quick as the Viper or ZR1, but we wouldn't really expect it to be. In any case, it's a fun comparison for bragging rights, but it's anything but scientific. In other words, take all this with a healthy spoonful of salt and stay tuned for more in this space from all three of the American automakers.
Check out a video from Drag Times below, and remember, reaction time doesn't matter in this scenario.