American Muscle Cars and Dodge’s Scat Pack

With Challengers, Mustangs, and Corvettes racing down America’s roads, the muscle car era was well under way during the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. Dodge was a formative competitor in the muscle car market with models such as the Dodge Charger, Dodge Challenger, and Dodge Demon. However, Dodge had to compete with other American makes such as Chevrolet and Ford for the hearts of America’s muscle car fans. In order to compete, Dodge and its parent company, Chrysler Corporation, introduced a new optional accessory and body kit package to their line of muscle car models known as the Scat Pack.

Scat Pack logo.

To market the new Scat Pack kit, Dodge created the Scat Pack logo, a bee-type insect with racing tires and a V8 engine strapped to its back. The optional body kits also coordinated with the Scat Pack logo. Dodge muscle car owners could choose to paint their cars bright colors with vertical black racing stripes that ran from the hood of the car to the trunk.

Dodge took the Scat Pack marketing scheme one step further and introduced the Scat Pack Club. This was a club for Dodge muscle car enthusiasts where they could attend meetings with other Dodge muscle car owners and receive performance parts catalogs and coordinating Scat Pack Club merchandise. Dodge even used the club as a tool to cultivate new fans by allowing children to also join as full members with the same benefits as adults, preparing them to be future Dodge owners.

Trade catalog showing modifications available from the Scat Pack kits.

The trade catalog shown here is one example that describes the Dodge models available for modification by the Scat Pack kit. The Charger, Challenger, and Demon, could all be outfitted with modified engines, accessories, and black racing stripes, the signature look of a Scat Pack car. Additionally, near the back of the catalog, there are advertisements for the Scat Pack Club. It describes the benefits of the club and includes a mail-in membership card where a Dodge enthusiast could join for as little as $5.95 for a year’s membership.

The Dodge Scat Pack Club focused on a niche market of the American car consumer. Dodge muscle cars were tough, fast, and distinctly American. However by the mid-1970’s, muscle cars were waning in popularity, and both the Challenger and Charger models were taken out of production only to be brought back decades later by Dodge. As only one example of the muscle car phenomenon, the Scat Pack and the Scat Pack Club materials of the Z. Taylor Vinson Collection, offer a unique view into the American muscle car culture and just how popular it was and still is to this day.

Robin Valencia is the Graduate Assistant for the Z. Taylor Vinson Collection at Hagley Museum and Library.

One thought on “American Muscle Cars and Dodge’s Scat Pack

  1. Greetings,
    I have some excellent photos of the original Super Bee Scat Pack Lighted Dealer Sign from 1969. Feel free to use them if you like. The link is for the sign currently for sale on ebay, however there is a page link in hte auction to Hi-Rez photos-feel free to use them.
    Thank you,
    LB

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>