The Let's Play Archive

Need for Speed: Most Wanted

by Olive Branch

Part 14: The History of Dodge; About the Dodge Viper SRT-10

The History of Dodge

Dodge is an American-based manufacturer of cars, minivans, and SUVs, but it is also a division of the Chrysler group, also an American-based automaker that owns the brands Jeep, Chrysler, Ram, and more. Founded as the Dodge Brothers Company in 1900 to supply parts and assemblies for Detroit's growing auto industry, Dodge began making its own complete vehicles in 1915, and became part of Chrysler in 1928 due to falling sales numbers and the death of the two Dodge brothers.

The Dodge line of cars competed (and was rotated) internally with Plymouth and DeSoto lines, with Dodge being the higher-end and more expensive line of the three. During the WW2 years, as with all other automakers, Dodge and Chrysler turned to war material manufacturing, tough Dodge-brand trucks and ambulances gave the brand reliability and a good reputation. Post-WW2 Dodge cars were easily sold, though their styling and appearance did not stand out from the crowd. From the late 40s to the 60s, Dodge models included the Coronet, the Lancer, and the Dart. The Dodge Charger was a real hit, becoming a hot seller and a NASCAR circuit winning car. Thanks to the success of the Charger, Dodge became known for its muscle cars in the 60s and 70s, but the 1973 oil crisis spelled big changes in Chrysler. Smaller cars were made, but the Dodge brand in general kept the idea that bigger was better.

Falling sales and poor showings on the market caused Chrysler to run to the U.S. Congress for help and avoid bankruptcy. With bailout money in hand (and starting a grand tradition living to this day), Chrysler started to make smaller cars and minivans. Specifically the Dodge Caravan was the car that saved Chrysler and Dodge. Even so, a merger with Daimler-Benz AG in 1998 forced Chysler to abandon the Plymouth line to keep Dodge around. But this was only temporary: now Dodge began to suffer in recent years as the newly-merged company began to focus more on passenger cars and opted to sell off the Dodge line to Fiat. Despite Dodge's likely poor future, its legacy as a player in the muscle car market and its many, many trucks (including the well-known Dodge Ram) will remain intact for a long while.

About the Dodge Viper SRT-10

The Dodge Viper SRT-10 is a V-10 powered sports car, with an established four generations and a fifth one being produced for 2013. First sold in 1992, the Viper has a very distinct look and a very heavy engine for its size. The model used in-game is part of the third generation and has a 500 hp engine. The double-bubble roof shape was maintained from the second generation, as well as the option to keep the blue-with-white-stripes paint scheme also from the second generation. The reason for the bubbled roofs were to accomodate the use of helmets, as the Vipers were intended to be motor sports cars. Despite the Viper's enormous capacity for speed, its brakes are pretty awful, as well as its handling.

Triple A Says...

Ah, the Viper. This here is how you do American cars properly. You develop a BIG FUCKING ENGINE and put a semi-decent chassis around it. Of course, not many can really handle this thing at even eight tenths of it's full potential due to this car having ZERO traction control.