By Patrick Rall
Nestled among the many boring pages of the Chrysler Group’s recent 2012 financial announcement slideshow was the 2013 Business Plan Update that offers a look at the changes coming to the company over the next few years, including a vehicle refresh planned for 2015 that can only really apply to the SRT Viper. The chart in question (shown above) shows that in 2012 the SRT Viper debuted while 2013 brought about the refresh of the Grand Cherokee SRT – both of which have obviously already happened.
In 2014, we can see that there are three refreshed models planned which can only apply to the SRT variants of the Charger, Challenger and Chrysler 300C since the Viper will only be two years old while the Grand Cherokee will be practically brand new. This 2014 refresh of the Charger SRT and the Challenger SRT could bring about the supercharged 6.2L “Hellcat” Hemi while it should also bring about the next generation of the Challenger. There is speculation that the Charger will also be refreshed ahead of – or in conjunction with – the debut of the next generation SRT model but considering how popular the current Charger is…Im hoping that the refresh isnt too substantial. A 600hp supercharged Hemi would work just fine for the 4-door muscle car while the Challenger should get the refresh that it so desperately needs to compete with the Mustang and Camaro.
2015 shows that the SRT lineup will debut a newly refreshed model and with the Grand Cherokee, the Charger, the Challenger and the Chrysler 300C models having all being redone in some capacity in the two years prior – the Viper is the only vehicle in the SRT stable to receive a refresh. This will likely be the 2016 SRT Viper and while it seems hasty to refresh the sexy new supercar so quickly – this 2015 refresh will likely allow the Viper to keep up with the other cars in the supercar segment. The 2015 refresh of the Viper could also bring about the introduction of the next generation Viper ACR and/or the Viper Roadster/Convertible – provided that the company doesn’t sneak them into the lineup before then. Right now, there is no mention of any other new models between then and now but things can change and something like a new high performance model or a convertible could be in the plans without being listed as a refresh or as a new model.
Finally, the chart shows that there is a new model planned for the SRT brand in 2016. This could be the arrival of the SRT Viper ACR or the Viper Roadster/Convertible if those models had not already debuted in the years prior or as part of the 2015 Viper refresh. However, there is a far better chance that the new SRT vehicle in 2016 could be either the popularly rumored SRT Cuda – an ultra high performance version of the next generation Challenger – or the long awaited debut of the Dart SRT. There has been no proof that the Cuda does or ever will exist but insider information informed me that there was an SRT designed Dodge Dart at last year’s national dealership convention in Las Vegas. This news led many to believe that the Dart SRT was close to production but with no new additions to the SRT lineup between now and 2016 – hopeful SRT compact buyers might find themselves waiting at least 3 more years before they lay their eyes on the highest performance Dodge Dart.