Chrysler Group has cut production of its exotic sports car, the SRT Viper, by a third because of slower than expected sales, Automotive News reports.
Instead of making nine of the hand-built $104,480 two-seaters a day, production has been cut to six.
The cut shows how competitive the market has become for super-elite sports cars, never big moneymakers for manufacturers but always a chance to burnish the brand. The new Viper was a star of the 2012 New York Auto Show and went on sale earlier this year.
A Dodge fixture for year, Viper was reborn into Chrysler's performance SRT unit as a product in which Fiat, which owns Ferrari and Alfa Romeo, had a hand. As a pure American car, Viper was known for being raw and unrefined. The connection to Fiat, the Italian automaker which controls Chrysler Group, gave it a European touch.
Even though buyers get a free day at a raceway to learn how to drive it, dealers are apparently hesitant about selling the 640-horsepower car with a 10-cylinder engine, the News says.
Plus, the car doesn't have winter tires and sales dip as winter is coming. Viper is built at a factory in Detroit.