Ralph Gilles Drives His Dodge Viper ACR Hard At Canadian Tire Motorsport Park

Most of the times an automaker debuts a new car with sporty credentials, the press release for that particular car is likely to contain a comment from an executive centered on sportiness. But the truth of the matter is, few higher-ups talk the talk and also walk the walk. Ralph Gilles is the exception, especially when FCA’s design boss drives his Viper ACR like a pro on the racing circuit.
Ralph Gilles driving his Dodge Viper ACR 11 photos
Photo: screenshot from YouTube
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The following 3-minute and 20-second video shows Ralph Gilles enjoying one of his favorite past-time activities, letting the V10-powered Dodge sing the song of its people on the 2.459-mile (3.957-km) Canadian Tire Motorsport Park near Toronto. On a closer look, the head of design of Fiat Chrysler can really drive despite the fact the ACR is an absolute monster on the track.

From the cars he owns to his driving styling, it’s easy to tell how much Ralph loves the automotive world. Speaking of which, The Straight Pipes reports the FCA official has a 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon coming, but “he hasn’t picked a color yet.” This development is only natural, chiefly because the Viper has lost its halo car persona because of the 840-horsepower Demon.

In production since 2012, the fifth-gen Viper will stop production at the Conner Assembly Plant on August 31, 2017. The factory will be shut down permanently, with Fiat Chrysler refusing to comment on the possibility of getting the Detroit-based plant back in the game at some point in time.

Regarding the demise of the Viper, the imminent discontinuation comes courtesy of the lack of curtain airbags. As it currently is, the front-engined supercar can’t be fitted with curtain airbags, thus failing to comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard #226. All is not lost, however, with FCA chief Sergio Marchionne giving us a little bit of hope for what lies ahead.

According to Marchionne, the architectural development within the company – a.k.a. Alfa Romeo’s Giorgio platform – gives Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and Dodge the possibility that a new version of the Viper may surface.”

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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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