The R8 has standard front seat tall, head-protecting side-impact airbags, which act as a forgiving barrier between the passengers and the door. Combined with high-strength steel door beams this system increases protection from broadside collisions. The Viper doesn't offer side-impact airbags or side airbag protection for the head.
The R8 has a standard Audi Backguard System, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Audi Backguard System moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Viper doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.
The R8 has all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The Viper doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.
Both the R8 and the Viper have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control and electronic stability systems to prevent skidding.
The R8 comes with a full 4 year/50,000 mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24 hour roadside assistance. The Viper’s 3 year/36,000 mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.
The R8’s corrosion warranty is 7 years and unlimited miles longer than the Viper’s (12/unlimited vs. 5/100,000).
For smoother operation, better efficiency and fewer moving parts, the engines in the R8 have an overhead cam design, rather than the old pushrod design of the engine in the Viper.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2014 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Audi vehicles are better in initial quality than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 11th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 13 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 21st, below the industry average.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2014 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 19th in reliability. With 30 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 30th.
The R8 V10 Plus’ standard fuel tank has 3.8 gallons more fuel capacity than the Viper (19.8 vs. 16 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The R8 Coupe’s standard fuel tank has 7.8 gallons more fuel capacity than the Viper (23.8 vs. 16 gallons).
For better stopping power the R8’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Viper:
The R8 offers optional heat-treated ceramic brake rotors, which last ten to twenty times as long as conventional cast iron rotors, don’t rust, don’t fade during repeated high speed braking, and their lighter weight contribute to better braking, handling and acceleration. The Viper doesn’t offer ceramic brake rotors.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the R8 has standard 19-inch wheels. Only 18-inch front wheels are available on the Viper.
The R8 has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Viper doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the R8’s wheelbase is 5.5 inches longer than on the Viper (104.3 inches vs. 98.8 inches).
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the R8 is 1.6 inches wider in the front and 1.8 inches wider in the rear than on the Viper.
For better maneuverability, the R8’s turning circle is 1.8 feet tighter than the Viper’s (38.7 feet vs. 40.5 feet).
The R8 Coupe has 1.1 inches more front headroom and 1.7 inches more front shoulder room than the Viper Coupe.
A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the R8. The Viper doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.
The R8’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Viper’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.
Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the R8 to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The Viper doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.
The R8’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. The Viper doesn’t offer heated side mirrors.
The R8 has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Viper has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.
The R8 has standard heated front seats, which keep the driver and front passenger extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated seats aren’t available in the Viper.
The R8 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The Intellichoice estimates that the R8 will retain 60.76% to 68.2% of its original price after five years, while the Viper only retains 49.54% to 50.79%.
Motor Trend performed a comparison test in its November 2013 issue and they ranked the Audi R8 V10 Plus Coupe nine places higher than the Dodge Viper Coupe.
The Audi R8 outsold the Dodge Viper by 12% during the 2014 model year.