How the Dodge Logo Has Evolved Over the Years
We’re all aware that Dodge’s vehicles have evolved over the years, with the brand’s present-day models differing from Dodge cars and trucks from only 20 years ago!
However, some fans may not recognize the evolution of the brand’s design. It hasn’t always featured the familiar cross-like design, as a star, crest, and even a ram’s head have been used for the company’s logo and hood ornaments over the years.
While the changes in Dodge’s logo may not have much influence over which vehicle you ultimately pursue at a Miami Dodge dealer, it’s still fun to look at the company’s evolution…
When Dodge first started over 110 years ago, the logo certainly didn’t resemble the emblem we see today. The symbol was essentially two interlocking triangles that combined to make a six-pointed star. This was surrounded by a circle, with the name “Dodge Brothers Motor Vehicles” surrounding the edge.
In the middle of the star were the letters D and B intertwined, a combination that presumably stood for “Dodge Brothers.” While the company generally dropped this brand name beginning around 1929 and 1930, the “DB” designation was still included in the brands logo throughout much of the 1930s.
That familiar leaping ram ornament at the front of Dodge’s vehicles first started popping up around 1932. The logo started being used more and more throughout the decade, and it had surely supplemented the star design by 1940.
The ram was revised a bit over the years, and by the time 1951 rolled around, it was only the ram’s head (with the accompanying curved horns) that was featured on the logo. The ram’s head was officially dropped for the 1955 model year, but the beloved logo would resurface decades later.
A crest logo was introduced in the early 1940s, with many believing the symbol was used to represent the Dodge family. The original design featured four horizontal lines with a vertical line going through the middle. The letter “O” was in the center of these bars, and a knight’s head appeared at the top.
The knight’s head was dropped by 1955, but the design stuck around for an extra couple of years. Every now and again, Dodge would reuse that crest design, with the logo popping up on the 1976 Aspen. The design ended up sticking around before being replaced in the early 1980s.
This logo may not have gotten as much hype or generated as much popularity as the other designs, as it was overshadowed by the Forward Look redesign of the brand’s vehicles. The logo simply accompanied that ambitious revamp.
The design featured a pair of overlapping boomerang shapes, a sort of scientific, advanced look that certainly made potential customers think of technology.
When the vehicle first debuted in 1955, the logo was included on all of Chrysler’s vehicles. Soon, the design was included in many of the brand’s advertisements, on the vehicles’ ignition and keys… it became synonymous with Dodge. The logo was eventually retired in 1962.
The Forward Lock logo was replaced by this kite-like design in late 1962, first popping up in the Polara 500 and the 1962 Custom 880. The broken deltoid included a trio of arrowheads that combined to form a distinctive three-point star.
The name Frotzog didn’t have much significance, but the executives seemingly liked the name enough when it was thrown out as a suggestion. This design blew up much like the Forward Lock, as it was included in the vehicles’ designs and many of the brand’s ads. The logo was eventually retired in 1981.
When Dodge decided to retire their crest design in 1981, they replaced it with the Pentastar logo. What’s a Pentastar? It’s essentially a pentagon, with a five-sided star formed in the middle. This is perhaps one of the brand’s most popular logos, and variations of it had existed since the early 1960s.
To distinguish Dodge’s Pentastar logo from Chrysler-Plymouth’s, the brand made their logo red, while Chrysler made their’s blue. This became a non-issue by 1995, when the logo was dropped.
The ram made it’s long-awaited return by the mid-1990s. In the years since it’s first retirement in the 1950s, the logo had popped up on the 1973 Dodge Bighorn heavy duty tractors. Eventually, as Dodge began producing more and more of their Ram pickup trucks, the ram’s head logo became a staple of the vehicles.
The ram logo we’re familiar with today first appeared in 1993, and it was soon popping up on many of the brand’s vehicles by 1996. The one model that didn’t include the ram’s head? That’d be the Viper, since the model’s logo included the iconic viper’s head.
Dodge and Ram eventually separated into their own entities, and when the truck brand branched out in 2010, they took the ram logo with them. This meant Dodge had to produce a new logo, but the brand decided to do something even better… they produced two!
The first design was rather simple, including two arching lines surrounding the word “DODGE.” While the design was initially only used for advertising, it was included in the vehicles’ designs by 2012.
An alternative emblem accompanied the 2011 Durango. The new logo was a revamp of the recent Ram design, replacing the ram’s head with a cross and the word “DODGE” in the middle. This was solely used in a vehicle’s design, like the grille or steering wheel.
Of course, if we’re going to focus on the logos (and the corresponding hood ornaments), we also have to recognize the brand’s various slogans throughout the years. These include:
- Dependability, The Dependables.
- Dodge Fever.
- You Could be Dodge Material.
- An American revolution.
- The new Dodge.
- Dodge. Different.
- Grab life by the horns.
- Grab life.
- Never neutral.
- Guts. Glory. Ram.
- Born Dodge.
- A Todo, Con Todo.
Each of the company’s logos was distinctive in their own way. The brand surely isn’t finished with redesigning their emblem, so expect to see several more changes over the next few decades.