SRT® Owner Profile: Rob Ransom, Lithia, Florida
My passion for SRT® began after owning several "performance" Dodge brand vehicles including: a 1970 Challenger, a 1982 Omni 024 and a 1998 Neon ACR. On Valentine's Day this year, my Neon SRT4 turned 10-years-old. In September of 2002, I managed to see and get a few pictures of the Neon prototype that was being shown at the MTV event at Virginia International Raceway. After seeing it in person, I was hooked. I purchased the car from Maroone Dodge in Pembroke Pines, Florida, over the phone and drove down on the 14th to pick it up. I picked up the car in the evening and used the drive back home to Tampa as the break-in period. I figured 300+ miles was a good number for break-in.
First Mopar® 1963 Dodge
SRT® Garage 2003 SRT4
Favorite Stretch of Road I really enjoy Route 119, between Clendenin and Spencer, West Virginia. I have been traveling this stretch of "twisties" since I was born. It's a two-lane road with lots of curves and is a ton of fun.
Farthest Traveled to Meet a Fellow Car Enthusiast SRT Nationals – 2004 and 2005 in Belle Rose, Louisiana
Racing or Cruising I'm too old to cruise. I only do legal racing at Bradenton Motorsports Park in Florida. I've made numerous trips to the drag strip and my times tend to stay right around the 14-second mark on street tires with no mods. I did manage to get it down to 13.904-seconds in September, 2003, with cooler weather. I have taken part in a few autocrosses as well in the Neon SRT.
I have been on the forums since well before the Neon SRT4 was released in 2003. I previously owned a 1998 Neon ACR and was a known member of Neons.org and Floridaneons. Owning the ACR from new in 1998 is why I decided to buy my SRT and have been happy with it since day one.
Clubs One of the first events with multiple SRTs was in July 2003, when I had a barbeque at my house. We managed to pull together five SRTs in the same place. Over the next year there were numerous events locally with multiple SRTs showing. I even managed to take a first-place trophy at a Mopar car show. I think the largest gathering I attended in 2003 was the Neon show at Race Rock in Orlando in August.
In late 2003 the first SRT Nationals were announced and for me it was a no-brainer to attend. It was a great event with good planning, and had a large PVO (Performance Vehicle Operations) presence and a fun track (No Problem Raceway/Circuit Grand Bayou). I met a lot of the members from the forum at that event, including an intrepid traveler from Alaska. Along with my wife's help, I managed to win the KICKER® Scavenger Hunt and get the complete KICKER speaker system installed in my car by the KICKER people.
Badge of loyalty I had my "SRT-4" license plate ordered in December 2002 and have had it on the car ever since.