History of Dodge Logos
Many fascinating and mysterious logos have been used by Dodge throughout the past 100 years. Dodge used different logos depending on the model and vehicle purpose. Trucks, passenger cars and performance vehicles typically held different logos on grills. Below are the most notable emblems used by Dodge since its inception.
Six-Pointed Star (1914-1938): When the Dodge brothers, Horace and John, built their first automobile in 1914, their final touch was a small enamel badge on the radiator with their company logo: a circle with two interlocking triangles forming a six-pointed star in the middle; an interlocked “DB” was at the center of the star, and the words “Dodge Brothers Motor Vehicles” encircled the outside edge. Although similar to the Star of David, the Dodge brothers were not Jewish. Although the “Brothers” was dropped from the name for trucks in 1929 and cars in 1930, the DB star remained in the cars until the 1939 models were introduced.
Ram: For 1932, Dodge cars adopted a leaping ram as the car’s hood ornament. Starting with the 1940 models the leaping ram became more streamlined and by 1951 only the head, complete with curving horns, remained. The 1954 model cars were the last to use the ram’s head before the rebirth in the 1980s. Dodge trucks adopted the ram as the hood ornament for the 1940 model year with the 1950 models as the last.
Crest: For 1941, Dodge introduced a crest, supposedly the Dodge family crest. The design had four horizontal bars broken in the middle by one vertical bar with an “O” in the center. A knight’s head appeared at the top of the emblem. Although the head would be dropped for 1955, the emblem would survive through 1957 and reappear on the 1976 Aspen. The crest would be used through to 1981 on its second time around, being replaced by the Pentastar for 1982. The knight’s head without the crest would be used for 1959.
Forward Look (1955-1962): After the Dodge family crest was used between 1941-1957, Virgil Exner designed Dodge’s “Forward Look” logo: two overlapping boomerang shapes that suggested progress and forward motion. The design was heavily influenced by developing rocket propulsion technology and was named after the redesign campaign being used on the Chrysler Corporation’s vehicles.
Fratzog (1962–1981): From 1962 to 1981, the Dodge emblem had a colorful internal label: It was called a fratzog. If you’re wondering what that word means (it sounds German, doesn’t it?), it’s totally meaningless. Three arrow shapes pointed inward to form a three-sided star. Not knowing what else to call the imaginative design, a Dodge designer made up the whimsical name.
Pentastar (1982-1992): For a decade, Dodge adopted Chrysler’s Pentastar logo on its vehicles, which had been used for corporate identification since 1962. To differentiate itself, Dodge’s Pentastar was red, while Chrysler-Plymouth’s was blue.
Ram’s head (1993–2010): Dodge reintroduced the ram’s head hood ornament on the new 1973 Dodge Bighorn heavy duty tractor units. Gradually the ram’s head began appearing on the pickup trucks as Dodge began to refer to their trucks as Ram. The present iteration of the Ram’s-head logo appeared in 1993, standardizing on that logo in 1996 for all vehicles except the Viper, which uses the Viper’s Head.
New Dodge logo (2010): When Ram Trucks was relaunched as its own brand in 2009 and used Dodge’s logo, Dodge was forced to replace its own. The present Dodge logo features several shades of silver and red colors. The Dodge inscription is all silver, but has a light hue at the top and dark, or rather grey, at the bottom. It stands for grandeur, dignity and sophistication. The two inclined stripes at the right side of the logo are painted red to symbolize passion and excitement, associated with the company’s vehicles. The new logo was unveiled in late May 2010.