A Colonial Viper is the primary space superiroity fighter of the tewlve colonies. There have been several variants. The following have been featured or mentioned in Battlestar Prometheus:
The first in what would become a long series of successful Space Superiority fighters, the "Viper" was designed and manufactured by G.L.L. Defense Industries Inc. on Caprica. When introduced to the Caprican Ministry of Defence they were the fastest and most manoeuvrable aerospace fighters ever developed by humans. However its service was short lived due to the Cylon War. The Admiralty asked for a fighter that could out perform a Cylon raider and the result was that the Mark 2 began completely replacing the Mark 1 at the end of the 2nd year of the war. The only operational ones left are the ones aboard the Battlestar Ares.
The Viper Mark 2 was introduced in the second year of the cylon war. Speciality designed for use with the new Jupiter Class Battlestars, they were basic, but incredibly capable fighters. Small, fast, adaptable and potentially dangerously maneuverable, they managed to out preform virtually every fighter in use by either side, while being almost completely impervious to cylon attempts at hacking. Unlike the Mk 1 its service was not short lived. In fact it was quite the opposite being the primary colonial fighter from its introduction to shortly after the Cylon War, an operational history of over a decade. It is believed that the Battlestar Galactica continues to operate a squadron of such fighters. The Eternal found the wreckage of a few of galactica's examples over Ragnar, and the Pegasus' black book confirmed that they were still in operation.
The Viper Mark 7 is the latest in a long series of successful Space Superiority fighters. Designed and manufactured by G.L.L. Defense Industries Inc. on Caprica, they are the fastest and most manoeuvrable fighter ever developed by humans. With the Cylon War fresh in the minds of the Admiralty, they asked for a fighter that could conceivably out perform a Cylon counterpart and while they are satisfied with the Mark 7, rumours abound that the Mark 8 is already in the planning stages. These ships are the main fighters of every current colonial ship, Including the Prometheus. The Mercury Class Battlestar (like the Eternal or Pegasus) held 200. Most large modern ships also have the facilities to build these ships. More examples of this fighter survived the the Attack then any other.