According to official data, the basis for the Dodge automobile brand was a bicycle manufacturing company founded by the Dodge brothers John and Horatius in 1899. Other sources date the company's founding in 1900. Such a start was typical of many well-known automotive brands.
Some sources claim that the Dodge brothers began their business with a small store selling car parts that were made at the brothers' factory. The assortment included powertrains, transmissions and other components for machines. Dodge's main customer was Ford.
The business of the enterprise was successful and already in 1914 the brothers presented a car of their own design. Until the end of 1914, 249 of these cars were assembled.
The brand name of the company was a six-pointed star with the image of the globe inside. The first symbol indicated the Jewish origin of the brothers.
The Dodge enterprise was actively developing and by the 20th year of the 20th century took 2nd position in terms of production volumes. The leader was the Ford brand. In the same year, the brothers die. The actual owners of it were the widows of the Dodge brothers, but they were clumsily doing business, as a result of which the company became unprofitable. At the same time, production increased to 200 thousand cars per year. After some time, the car brand was bought by several banks, which for this purpose were united in a consortium.
In 1927, a Senior Six car rolled off the assembly line. It was equipped with a six-cylinder engine and hydraulic brakes. A year later, a cheaper version of Victory Six went on sale.
With the onset of the Great Depression, which began in the 30s of the last century, the company's affairs deteriorated significantly. Walter Chrysler, a North American industry tycoon, buys the car brand along with production. This led to the further similarity of the products of the two brands.
The first models after entering the Chrysler structure were DA1 and DC. Since 1935, the body design has changed, they have become streamlined, angular shapes are a thing of the past.
With the outbreak of World War II, production switched to the production of army equipment. Trucks and SUVs were very successful and were popular. They were supplied to the Soviet Union by Lend-Lease.
At the end of the war, the company produced modified models of the pre-war years. In 1949, the Dodge lineup was updated. 3 new models were released right away: Wayfarer, Meadowbrook, Coronet. They were equipped with a six-cylinder power unit with a robotic gearbox.
Coronet was modified in 1953. He has new body options. This is a two-door convertible, sedan and passenger-and-freight modification. An updated lineup was produced until 1956.
In 1960, the production of Polara and Matador cars began. A small-sized Dart was also developed, and later a Lancer model of the same class with a 2.7-liter engine appeared.
After 6 years, the Charger was released, which in the sports version was equipped with a 7-liter engine. In 1970, the Challenger appeared - it was a muscle car with a powerful engine of 7 liters. Later it decreased to 5 liters.
The post-war phase of the development of the Dodge company determined its image as a manufacturer of powerful cars, both sports and muscle cars, as well as SUVs. At the same time, the 80s were marked by the release of economical models such as Plymouth, Sundance, Shadow.
The new milestone of development was the Dodge Viper. It was introduced in 1989 and became a revolutionary development regarding design. It was equipped with units with a capacity of 394 and 364 horsepower. They were a joint development of Dodge and Lamborghini. Complete with motors, a six-speed transmission worked. The Viper suspension was completely independent. For the manufacture of the body and supporting structures used composite materials.
In 2000, the “maximum” version of the Viper was released under the CTS / R index with a motor with a power of 500 liters. sec., which allowed the car to accelerate to 320 km / h.
The only executive car was the Dodge Intrepid, released in 1992. A sports version with the designation FVT was also developed.
The bestseller was the Dodge Neon introduced in 1993. This Golf car was designed to compete with Japanese brands in this class.
In the 90s, Dodge began to actively market its pickups. Today the company is one of the largest pickup truck manufacturers in the USA and they are popular. The main competitors in this class are Ford and Chevrolet.