36 Original Miles! 1992 Dodge Viper RT/10

Is this the lowest mileage first generation Dodge Viper RT/10 in existence? It just may be, with only 36 original miles on the clock. It’s going up to auction soon, and while the Viper can be hit or miss in terms of the price tag, an example as fresh in the wrapper as this car is pretty tough to top. While we don’t encourage enthusiasts to let their cars sit gathering dust, the low mileage seen here likely means you’re not going to get much time behind the wheel should you pony up the cash to bring it home. Find the Viper here on the Russo and Steele website, and thanks to Barn Finds reader Mitchell G. for the find. 

The earliest Vipers are notorious for having build quality issues, which was endearing in a way given this was one of the best examples of a company taking a car almost directly from the trade show floor exhibit to reality. I generally feel that if you complain about a manufacturer bringing a supercar like this to reality with some nagging quality control issues, then we deserve overly-neutered vehicles that are a shell of their former concept car selves. Anyway, cheap plastics aside, the first generation Viper is the last time I think we’ll see a potentially risky car make it into production, as the manufacturers seemingly have no interest in doing these sort of quasi-skunkworks builds anymore. The Viper in question remains absolutely spotless inside with perfect seating surfaces and hard plastics.

When you first saw the Viper, you’d be forgiven for simply being lost in its racy looks. Then you pop the hood and there’s this monster motor inside, and engine that incorporated the best traditions of jamming the largest engine into the allotted space possible. The monstrous V10 pushed out a very healthy 400 b.h.p @4600 RPMs and 465 lb-ft of torque. Having driven the Viper of this era more than once, I can report this beast of an engine steals a lot of room from the footwells, pushing the pedals into a very tight space and your legs up against the transmission tunnel, which in turn makes your thighs sweat profusely if you happen to drive one in the summer months. It’s not comfortable, but it’s still a riot to drive.

The Viper was a major achievement, both in terms of performance and in design. There was nothing like it on the road, and it seemed to capture perfectly Chrysler Corporation’s general attitude about production vehicles at the time: nothing was out of reach, and every car – even the miserly Neon – could be spec’d up in such a way that you could drive it straight to the track and home again. The RT/10 seen here is a centerpiece to any muscle car collection, and it will likely leave one millionaire’s garage after the auction is complete just to enter another private storage facility. It’s a shame, but I suppose we’ll be glad to have at least one of these iconic muscle cars remain in bone-stock, near-new condition. Would you continue to preserve it or add 5,000 miles inside of a month?

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Comments

  1. DayDreamBeliever Member

    I wonder how many of the first generation in particular were treated to a collision with a tree or power pole between being picked up at the dealerships and the buyer’s homes?

    Like 15
    • Mike

      “Gee, I wonder what this pedal on the right does?”

      Like 6
  2. Gary

    You would think that at what these cost, Chrysler could have a least put in enough leg room to make them comfortable and SAFE to shift. The rich guy that put this away is going to have a loser investment, plus lost all of the fun that he could have had if he had driven it. Best idea, invest 75% of the original cost of this in the market in a nice safe S&P 500 index fund, then the last 25% in an equally fun car to drive. He would have been so much more ahead financially plus would have had lots of great memories. The logic of the rich often escapes me, makes me wonder how they got that way in the first place.

    Like 18
    • Johnny

      Its called greed. I wouldn,t buy one in the first place. Way over price. Can,nt work on it. Everything is crowded. Not comfortable . Wonder what the gas mileage is? Can,nt get good gas to run in it. Unless you buy av gas.Insurance would be high–even parked in a nice garage. Their went alot of his investment. Yes it would be a bad investment if you add up all the cost keeping this car ,.This condition. If you can afford it–drive it .Its what it was made for

      Like 2
      • Mark

        I own a 95 Viper roadster and it’s very comfortable. It is much more comfortable than my 2013 Genesis coupe. The Viper also gets 22 mpg if your hogging on it constantly then it gets 16. My legs do not sweat perfusely and the insurance is about $450 a yr…. Great fun the drive but also dangerous, downshift into 3 gear at 100 mph and it spins the monster rear tires…. Oh and it is not at all hard to work on. I’m not sure where you did your research but you are completely wrong.

        Like 14
    • 94AMGMBzCab

      If we wanted “legroom” we would all be driving SUVs!

      Like 3
    • Anthony D

      Well it’s a head turner that’s for sure. Unfortunately, those lookers won’t do anything for his bank account.

  3. Skorzeny

    Nearly the WORST wheels ever on a production car. You let that get past the drawing board?

    Like 3
    • ace10

      They look great on a SAAB, though.

      Like 3
    • 94AMGMBzCab

      Obviously you were born prior to 1990?!

  4. Bakyrdhero Bakyrdhero Member

    Nice interior. I just assumed all the first year Vipers had Charcoal leather. This looks refreshing.

  5. Johnny

    Plus it IS NOT a BARN FIND–MORE LIKE A MUSEUM FIND. Why show this car on Barn Finds. Its not .I believe most people on hear are really looking for a old vehicle located in a barn,shed or old building. Not a well cared for vehicles babyed in a nice garage.Maybe your only trying to help the guy sale it. I don,t know.

    Like 1
    • PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

      Speak for yourself, Johnny.

      If “most people on hear” only cared for real barn finds, then there would be far fewer viewers and commenters.

      There’s nothing stopping you from creating “RealBarnFinds.com”

      Like 11
      • TCOPPS TCOPPS Member

        ^^^Agreed^^^

        Like 1
  6. Mark

    Gen 1 vipers are great bang for the buck cars. You can easily find a low mileage car for less the $30k.

    Like 1
    • 94AMGMBzCab

      And the wheels only look dated when standing still. Over 50 mph it’s a different story – as James Brown would croon

      Like 2
  7. John Oliveri

    I remember the first time I seen this exact color combo car, Fort Lauderdale Florida Marriott Harbour Beach Hotel, summer of 92, or 93, Car never moved during the day, guy only drove it after sunset, nice car, sounded awesome

    Like 2
  8. Howie Mueler

    Both cool and sad at the same time.

  9. al K

    The guy works all his life. When your home with your family, he is working
    12 to 15 hours a day. He finally hits it big. Might have a divorce in-between
    finally wants to do something for himself and buys what was a HOT car
    at the time. And you, sir, criticize him?
    If that was his joy in life – let it be. Good luck to him. I hope he bought
    some stock also.

    Like 2
    • 94AMGMBzCab

      My attorney in LA, who bought a ’92 when they first arrived in showrooms… didn’t make it 8 blocks before wrappin’ round a telephone pole. His girlfriend left him right after. Not because of nearly being killed, but because he had bought it for her!

      Like 3
  10. t-bone BOB

    nice

    Like 1
  11. Strange Brew

    I have driven one of these cars and can still say to this day, it is the only car I’ve ever driven that I thought about passing someone ( a kid in a ratty Civic with a fart pipe who had just passed me to get a better look) and was already around them.

    Like 1

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