Let's assume you have the money to buy 1 mid-range sports car, and you want to keep it domestic, which will it be? The Corvette has the most history, but the Viper has a V10. Decisions...decisions.
So basically when you talk about American made sports cars for 2008, you have 5 options. Just for the record, I am excluding the Pontiac Solstice due to the G8.
2008 Chevrolet Corvette Z06
Around since 1953, this car has become an icon. The 2008 model is the most high-performing Corvette ever seen, generating 430 horsepower and 424 ft-lbs of torque from a GM 6.1 liter supercharged V8. The total weight of the vehicle with a 170lb adult is 3425lbs, giving a power to weight ratio of 8lbs for every horsepower. The base price of the 2008 Vette is $53,625 or $125 per base horsepower.
2008 Dodge Viper SRT-10
Not nearly as old as the Corvette, but still backed by years of racing experience. Returning for the new year is the 8.4 liter Viper V10. It makes 600 horsepower at the rear wheels and can go from 0 to 60 in under 4 seconds. Weighing in at 3620lbs including a driver it carries a power to weight ratio of 6lbs per horsepower. The new Viper will set you back $83,145. Costing $138.50 per base horsepower.
2008 Saturn Sky Redline
The brother of the Pontiac Solstice, the Sky ushers in a new generation of performance. It says the US can make a fast car without a huge motor. The Redline uses a 260 horsepower 2.0 liter inline-4. With a total weight of 3150lbs, every pony carries about 12lbs. The Redline's base price is $29,175, making each horsepower worth about $112.
2008 Mustang GT
Another American classic, the 2008 Mustang is a valuable addition to the muscle car family. The Ford 4.6 liter V8 cranks out 300 hp and 320 ft-lbs of torque. Each of little horsey costs $86.00 and is responsible for hauling a little less than 12lbs of the 3500lb car.
2008 Pontiac G8 GT
The newest of the modern day muscle cars, the G8 will replace the GTO. Under the hood lies a potent 6.0 liter V8 responsible for the 362 horsepower growl heard from the 3 inch exhaust. The price tag is $34,450 which equates to $95.00 per base horsepower. A curb weight of 4055 draws 11lbs for every horsepower.
So to recap, the 2008 Viper has the lowest power to weight ratio at 6 lbs per horsepower. The most power for you money comes from the 2008 Mustang GT, costing $86.00 per base horsepower. The cheapest to buy, own and operate is the 2008 Saturn Sky Redline. The Corvette is best described as a "happy medium."
At this point it's all in what you want. If speed and power are your number 1 priority, the Viper is your best bet. If you want your dollar to go the farthest, the Mustang will give you the most for the price. If you want something fun, yet economical, look to the Sky. The most important thing, drive safe.
Blame it on : MotorTrendGeorge Delozier