AUTO

Dodge Viper replacement teased on Facebook

Chrysler

 (Chrysler)

And the sssssstriptease begins.

Chrysler has released the first image of the much-anticipated replacement for the Dodge Viper on Facebook.

The white on black line drawing of the front of the upcoming supercar is lacking in detail, but shows a few distinctive styling cues that carry over from the old car including tall front fenders, a double-bubble roof and a central air intake on the hood for what is surely a massive powerplant underneath it. But unlike the original, the new Viper will be sold under Chrysler’s newly-formed high-performance SRT (Street and Racing Technology) brand, rather than Dodge.

Little is known about the all-new Viper, but company execs have said to expect a more sophisticated vehicle than the blunt instrument that preceded it. Traction and stability control are almost a sure thing, and last summer SRT President and CEO Ralph Gilles told Fox Car Report LIVE! that the addition of cruise control and – gulp – cupholders were under consideration.

Originally rumored to be powered by an engine from Chrysler’s Fiat-run cousin Ferrari, the latest word is that it will use a street-legal take on the recently introduced 800 hp 8.7-liter V10 crate engine, which is not only based on the motor from the old Viper, but still wears the car’s name on its read head covers.

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Regardless, Gilles says the new Viper will "be hopefully something people collect, covet and are happy it exists.”

The 2013 Viper will be evealed in full at the New York Auto Show in April, and in showrooms by the end of the year. It will be built in Detroit at the Conner Avenue Assembly plant where the old one was produced, known to fans of the car as the "Snake Pit."

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