Originaly published September 25, 2014

Photos courtesy Fiat Chrysler Automobiles

Dear Justin Pritchard,

You’ve been my friend for quite a long time and a friend to all of us for a number of years. We care about you and we would never want anything bad to happen to you.

So, please keep in mind, I am writing you this letter because I don’t want any harm to come to you, your loved ones, or anyone else around you.

Justin – you have a problem. You’re addicted to Viper. And if you don’t stop now… I don’t know, Justin. I just don’t know.

This summer, I went to a place in Michigan known as the Chelsea Proving Grounds where Chrysler was peddling a new version of this Viper you’ve been such a fan of since boyhood.

There were literally dozens, if not hundreds, of “automotive journalists” waiting to be “bitten by the Snake.” I guess that’s what they call it on the streets of the mitten state. Except, the Viper they pushed on us was a little gentler, easier to take, and much more refined than the Viper you do.

At first, I was scared to stand in line with the rest of those people. Viper, from what I’ve heard, can hook you immediately. Legends abound of its euphoric, fairly benign – but unique – side effects, and the absolutely catastrophic consequences if you take Viper too far.

People in the line who came here to try Viper last year were fidgety and talking quickly.

“Is­it­your­turn­yet? I’m­after­you. Let­me­know­when­it’s­your­turn­so­I­know­when­it’s­my­turn. Oh­my­god,I­can’t­wait­to­drive. Did­they­call­your­name­yet? Did­they­call­my­name­yet?”

I was really questioning my existence and reason for why I was here. But, I needed to find out for myself how you feel when you use Viper.

On old Viper, I’ve heard people are so caught up in the high, they forget about their leg placement when coming down. There are numerous stories of people burning their ankles as their feet come back to earth.

With this new Viper, there’s none of that. Something about the ‘exhaust pipe’ being hidden. I dunno’, these chemists at StradaRhodeTechnologica are hard to understand when they talk about the side effects of new Viper.

2015 Dodge Viper SRT2015 Dodge Viper SRT GTS
2015 Dodge Viper SRT, Viper SRT GTS. Click image to enlarge

I can tell you new Viper is significantly more powerful than old Viper. I think your dosage is 450 aitch-pees? New Viper is 645 aitch-pees. I don’t know what ‘aitch-pee’ stands for because, again, these chemists… so hard to understand.

I did finally decide to stand in line with the rest of those waiting to be ‘bitten’ because it’s important to me to know what’s drawn you into the Viper lifestyle.

I put my name on a list, just like at the clinic, and waited for my name to be called.

Others stood around casually as if they do this sort of thing all the time. Me? I was a nervous wreck.

I’ve tried other things, Justin. Camaro and Mustang were good but they’re usually associated with a certain type of person I don’t want to associate with. There’s Alfa Romeo, too, which I also tried on the same day as Viper. I’ve heard the Europeans love it. But, trying to sell it a year or two after it’s made is very difficult and you can only really expect to get back half what you’ve paid.

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