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This Modded Dodge Viper Is the Coolest Off-Roader on the Planet

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The original Dodge Viper is not an off-roader. Low-slung, sporty, and stiff, its main purpose is to deliver joy via twisty tarmac and big, open, smooth-paved highways. Apparently nobody mentioned that to the builder of this Viper, which has gone through extensive modifications to make it a competent desert runner. Somehow, the looks rad as hell.

The SuperFastMatt YouTube channel has spent the past year disassembling, cutting, and reassembling this bright-red first-generation Viper from the 1990s. The project has gotten to a point where the host, Matt, felt comfortable enough to take the car to the desert for a thorough round of tests that included donuts, jumps, and rock-crawling.

In addition to the cut fenders and giant all-terrain tires, Matt designed custom uprights for the front suspension to work with aftermarket long-travel shocks and springs. Out back, the factory Viper suspension has been totally thrown out in favor of a solid axle taken from a Jeep Wrangler Rubicon, complete with a locking differential. The 8.0-liter naturally aspirated V-10 and six-speed Tremec T-56 transmission have, thankfully, been left alone.

Surprisingly, Matt’s testing reveals just a few small issues with the safari Viper. The locking diff means donuts are easy, but even with an upgraded radiator, coolant temperatures climbed higher than he would’ve liked. And while slow-speed rock-crawling was a success, the lack of a low-speed transfer case made torque modulation difficult.

Matt was brave enough to take the Viper off several jumps, made possible by the balloon-like tires and big-travel dampers. Though the car handled the landings fairly well, some of the interior trim fell off, and a couple of the custom suspension pieces were beginning to separate from each other. Nothing a few extra welds can’t fix.

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