By now it is a well known fact – instead of being a Dodge Viper, the replacement for the car is called officially called the 2013 SRT Viper. Many still refer to it is a Dodge, but selling it under the SRT brand means something in practical terms. It will still be sold at Dodge dealers, but instead of pushing it out to all of them, SRT can be selective about which ones will get the car.
This will enable a much better buying experience for buyers. Over the summer we’ve heard about qualifications it would take to become an SRT dealer – head scratching things such as allocation based on how many Calibers were sold. Reports had indicated that as many as one-fifth would be able to sell the car.
Those rumors didn’t prove to be true, but the selective process did. USA Today has issued a new report about how many have made the cut – only about 6.5 percent of Chrysler’s dealership in the United States. SRT Chief Executive Officer Ralph Gilles is a total car guy, we all know that. WIth the Viper being his baby, he said the “the first unofficial requirement [is]…..a love affair with the cars.” A qualified dealer will have received training in terms of technology, along with a display car. Those are a few of the requirements we’ve heard from Gilles.
In May he said “there’s going to be a list….it’s not going to be impossibly, it’s just that someone has to put in the extra effort and say ‘I’m an SRT dealer.” That’s not unreasonable. It is a $122,390 sports car at the top end, after all. To be considered, dealers will need to sign an agreement that includes a willingness to spend a total of $25,000 on the privilege to sell, tools, training and other SRT-specific items. Remember, Chrysler is really planning on making SRT its own brand, with unique models. We’re hearing about an SRT Barracuda that could be coming down the pipe, so things will get interesting. For now it’s good to hear that only the best of the best are being selected to sell the Chrysler Group’s most powerful and expensive vehicle.