March 12, 2008 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - Chrysler LLC's Conner Avenue Assembly Plant reached a manufacturing milestone today, building its 25,000th Dodge Viper. The new owner of the milestone 2008 Viper SRT10 is none other than Kurt Busch, who received the vehicle in a ceremony held at the Detroit facility in recognition of his racing accomplishments as the top Dodge driver in the 2007 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

"This is one of the biggest thrills I've ever experienced, and I am so grateful to Bob Nardelli and all of my friends at Dodge for presenting such a cool gift,” said Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge. “To be an active part in celebrating the 25,000th Dodge Viper to roll off the assembly line is an extraordinary honor and one I’ll remember for the rest of my life. To be honest with you, I feel like a young child anticipating a special Christmas gift. I am just that excited and so pleased that I have this opportunity. I’m proud to be a Dodge driver on the NASCAR circuit and appreciate the opportunity to meet all the employees at the plant and personally thank them for the tremendous job they do."

Chrysler Chairman and CEO Robert Nardelli presented the keys to Kurt Busch after the vehicle rolled off the assembly line.

“Reaching this milestone is quite an achievement considering the Dodge Viper SRT10 is a hand-built performance vehicle,” said Nardelli. “This unique manufacturing facility has allowed us to produce a true American legend.”

“Members of UAW Local 212 take enormous pride in every hand-built Viper we deliver to our customers,” said General Holiefield, UAW Vice President who directs the UAW’s Chrysler Department. “We’re very proud to team up with a proven winner like Kurt Busch. He knows world-class quality and craftsmanship when he sees it, and that’s exactly what he’s going to see in his new UAW-built Dodge Viper."

Since its introduction as a concept car at the 1989 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, the Dodge Viper has captured the imagination and passion of performance enthusiasts around the world. The new 2008 Dodge Viper SRT10 offers consumers bold exterior styling, a race-inspired interior, world-class ride and handling, a standout powertrain and benchmark braking.

Dodge Viper production began in May 1992 at the New Mack Assembly Plant and was moved to Conner Avenue in October 1995. Viper V-10 engine production transferred from Mound Road Engine to Conner Avenue Assembly in May 2001. In 2008, Dodge introduced the all-new, fourth generation Dodge Viper SRT10. With more horsepower, more torque and more than 30 exterior and interior color combinations, the latest Viper gives enthusiasts the performance they expect on the track and off, with more factory customization options than before.

“The Dodge Viper SRT10 is the ultimate Dodge and the ultimate American sports car,” said Mike Accavitti, Director – Dodge Brand, SRT and Motorsports Global Marketing. “It has a bold, in-your-face exterior with a purposeful race-inspired interior, including the legendary push-button start. But it’s not just a pretty face. It backs up the bold styling with world-class performance on the track or off."

At Conner Avenue Assembly Plant, craftpersons hand-build the Dodge Viper SRT10 and its 600-horsepower 8.4-liter V-10 engine. Using 26 work stations on a 705-foot-long assembly line, 48 workers assemble each vehicle. Eight craftpersons build the 600-horsepower 8.4-liter SRT V-10 engine in the same facility using a 24-station circular line that is next to the vehicle assembly line.

"Back in 1992, the purpose of the Viper was to redefine what the Dodge brand was all about," said Melissa Holobach, Plant Manager – Conner Avenue Assembly Plant and Sterling Heights Vehicle Test Center (SHVTC). "We wanted to come up with something that was extreme and cutting edge. Twenty five thousand vehicles later, we’ve continued this incredible heritage with the 2008 Dodge Viper SRT10. It’s the evolution of an American automotive icon."

For the pure performance enthusiast, Dodge recently introduced the 2008 Dodge Viper SRT10 ACR, the ultimate, purpose-built, street-legal track car. With its 8.4-liter, 600 hp V-10 engine, the 2008 Dodge Viper SRT10 ACR offers customers aerodynamic improvements, reduced weight, a racing suspension, race-ready hardware and competition tuning for optimal on-track performance — all for less than $100,000 .

The 2008 Dodge Viper SRT10 ACR is hand-built on the same Conner Avenue assembly line as the 2008 Dodge Viper SRT10 coupe and roadster.

Detroit Community
Chrysler LLC's operations in Detroit include Conner Avenue Assembly Plant, Jefferson North Assembly Plant, Mack Engine Plants I and II, Detroit Axle, Mt. Elliott Tool and Die, Chrysler Transport and the Plymouth Road Office Complex. Other facilities in southeast Michigan include Chelsea Proving Grounds, Global Engine Manufacturing Alliance (GEMA), Sterling Heights Assembly Plant, Sterling Heights Stamping Plant, Trenton Engine Plant, Warren Stamping Plant and Warren Truck Assembly Plant.

Dodge Brand
With a U.S. market share of 6.4 percent, Dodge is Chrysler LLC's best-selling brand and the fifth largest nameplate in the U.S. automotive market. In 2007, Dodge sold more than 1.3 million vehicles in the global market. In the highly competitive truck market, Dodge has a 15 percent market share. Last year, Dodge introduced the all-new 2008 Dodge Grand Caravan with 35 new or improved features including the minivan's newest innovation, the Swivel ‘n Go™ seating system. Dodge is entering key European volume segments with Nitro, Caliber and Avenger. The all-new 2009 Dodge Journey was introduced earlier this year in North America and will be available outside North America in both left- and right-hand drive in mid-2008. Also in 2008, Dodge will introduce its modern muscle car, the all-new Dodge Challenger.