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Chrysler’s Gilles Drops Hints About Viper Revival

Starting to “feel like Santa’s workshop,” says design chief.

by on Feb.12, 2010

Chrysler Division boss and corporate chief designer Ralph Gilles says lots more products are coming.

Is the snake slithering its way back into the Dodge line-up?  Apparently so, according to some less than subtle hints by Ralph Gilles, Chrysler’s executive vice president, during a speech to the Chicago Economic Club.

Gilles, who does double-duty as both design chief and director of the Chrysler division, was a last-minute substitute for planned speaker Sergio Marchionne.  The Chrysler CEO wound up in Russia, however, signing a multi-billion dollar deal that will allow the maker and its Italian partner, Fiat, produce an assortment of products for the booming market.

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For Viper fans, the switch in speakers could be seen as fortuitous, as Gilles confirmed the U.S. maker is definitely working on an all-new version of the Viper, a halo car for the Dodge division and Chrysler, in general.  He did not provide many details, however, so that leaves aficionados to guess when the sports car will return and precisely which Fiat Group product it will be based on.  Most “insiders” are hinting the revived Viper could be back in the line-up by 2012 or ’13, about the same time a flood of other new Chrysler and Fiat-based products debut.