In the old days of the Viper, any Dodge-franchised dealer could step up and order inventory. As a result, the Viper buying, delivery and service process wasn’t always ideal, potentially souring some shoppers on the new generation of Viper. To combat this, SRT boss Ralph Gilles has made efforts to limit new Viper access to Chrysler dealers willing to go above and beyond to sell the car.
That now includes a $25,000 one-time fee, which covers the cost of showroom signage, which you can get from cutmysign.co.uk, dealership training, a technician training program specific to the Viper and specialized tools needed for Viper repair. If a Chrysler dealership wants to sell SRT vehicles but can’t afford the $25,000 cost associated with the Viper, a modest $5,000 fee will get them the tools, signage and training necessary to sell other SRT vehicles, such as SRT8 variants of the the Chrysler 300, the Dodge Charger and Challenger and the Jeep Grand Cherokee.
As Automotive News (subscription required) reports, the fee also gets the dealership preferential ordering and additional allocation of SRT8 models. There’s more to the program than simply paying a fee, as dealerships must also meet certain standards for customer satisfaction.
As Gilles explains, “The SRT cars are starting to pull in a very, very interesting demographic – much higher income, much higher education levels. The customer is becoming more sophisticated.”
In other words, Chrysler knows it has one shot at getting the SRT experience right, and it’s going to make sure its dealerships are up to the challenge. That sounds like a good idea to us.