Prices are skyrocketing. It's long overdue.
As classic car prices continue their precipitous climb, we've been left scratching our heads as to why certain models have been left out of the party. The Dodge Viper is one of those. After all, how many V10-powered sports cars with Lamborghini DNA and Carroll Shelby's fingerprints have ever existed? How many modern large-displacement sports cars can approach the Viper's reputation for a holistic driving experience, unspoiled by incessant electronic nannies like traction control and stability control?
But now, at long last, the Viper appears to be getting its due; automotive insurance company Hagerty has noted an appreciable uptick in prices for first-generation Dodge Vipers, declaring the days of the sub-$20,000 example all but over.
The trend really kicked off with the sale of late automotive executive Lee Iacocca's personal Viper for $285,500 at Bonhams' Scottsdale auction earlier this year. That car was exceptional, both for its ownership history and for being the first example ever produced, but it also marked the start of a flurry of higher-priced Viper sales this year; at that same auction, Hagerty says, Vipers outperformed the company's own projections by some 40 percent.
Prices don't seem to have come down any since. A 72-mile example that had never before been titled nabbed more than $80k on eBay last October, setting a new record for cars other than Lee Iacocca's, and an 83-mile car listed on eBay the following week brought in around $90k.
More recently, a 950-mile Viper sold on Bring A Trailer for $115k earlier this month - a sum 52-percent higher than Hagerty's current top listed value.
As staggering as all this recent activity is, it's also about time; the Viper has long been an undervalued classic, offering unique styling, an exotic powerplant, and a driving experience that is wholly unlike anything else on the road. If you've always dreamed of Viper ownership yourself, it would be best not to wait too long; prices are only going up from here.