Minnesota-based company Runge is known for creating unique cars using the techniques that coachbuilders employed in the first half of the last century. That means hammering and rolling individual body panels into shape by hand. Runge’s latest creation is the Veleno, which is built on the donor chassis of a 2004 Dodge Viper SRT10 roadster.
Runge Veleno: A Dodge Viper-Based Art Piece
The car was built by Runge founder Christopher Rune and his son and took around 5,000 hours to complete. The car was recently featured in the latest episode of “Jay Leno’s Garage,” with Runge explaining all the details. The Veleno looks as if it was inspired by Italian sports cars of the 1960s, and Runge explains in the episode that he initially tried to modernize his techniques by using digital scans of the Viper chassis to help a designer in the U.K. create the final shape of the Veleno, using Runge’s original sketches.
Unfortunately, the original plan failed, which resulted in Runge putting the car together the old way by making an aluminum tube buck to shape the vehicle for later metal working. He says he then pounded the body panels to shape the car for later metal working. After that, Runge beat the body panels from aluminum sheets on a tree stump and finished them on an English wheel. All of that comes together in the form of a beautifully unique car and one that built some beautiful memories.
The aluminum Runge uses is actually lighter than the original fiberglass body of the Viper by about 250 pounds. In addition, the company also created its own wheels and headlight lenses for the car. As for the interior of the Runge Veleno, it too is made from aluminum with the addition of some brown leather. The black walnut was used to construct the steering wheel and shift knob, which is gated. As for the Dodge Viper V-10, that’s mostly stock, though the engine was dressed up by polishing the intake and valve covers and adding stainless-steel headers to make everything match.