Legendary Mopar muscle cars have always had badass animal-inspired logos and names. Think Super Bee, Barracuda and Road Runner. The Dodge Challenger and Charger Hellcat twins are continuing the tradition with the now-familiar roaring cat logo that is now synonymous with the tire vaporizing, 707-horsepower cars they represent. But, it almost never happened.

When the Challenger SRT Hellcat was first shown in May 2014, a logo hadn’t been considered, but Dodge began floating some ideas (pictured in these sketches) to its social media followers. “People saw the logo and said, ‘This is awesome,’” Dodge CEO Tim Kuniskis told Automotive News. “It was originally just supposed to say ‘supercharged’ on the side of the car. But [the logo] got so much attention in social media that at the last minute, we changed from ‘supercharged’ to the actual logo on the car.”

Several ideas were considered, including some more cartoonish ones in the style of older Mopar muscle cars. The hair-raising ‘supercharged’ one in the middle was inspired by the Hellcat Records logo, the record label founded by Tim Armstrong of Rancid and Operation Ivy. But, everyone agreed the one of the snarling cat was by far the coolest, and Dodge included it on Charger SRT Hellcat’s flanks when it was introduced a few months later.

Continue reading for the full story.

Why it matters

If you’re going to build the most powerful factory muscle car ever, having a logo to match can be a big part of the car’s identity. It provides a visual cue that can complement a car’s character much better than any series of numbers and numerals. This is also a pretty cool example of how a critical mass of social media users can influence car design, or at least decoration. If you don’t like or dislike something about a car, speak up. Someone might be listening.

2015 Dodge Challenger Hellcat

2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review here.

2015 Dodge Charger Hellcat

2015 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat High Resolution Exterior
- image 564479

Read our full review here.

Source: Automotive News

James Wolfcale
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