Muscle Cars

The forgotten Hot Rod: Dodge SuperBee.

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By Mark Weisseg

The Dodge Super Bee is a car to be reckoned with for sure. The Mopar guys and gals always talk about Charger, Superbirds, Roadrunners, and such but the Bee gets lost in the shuffle.

Produced between 1968–1971, the Dodge super be was originally rebadged Plymouth Road Runner, but slowly morphed into its Own entity by the end of production.

It has the same standard big engines we all know by now. So, what’s the big deal you ask?

It was a big car of course with long fenders and quarters. Huge trunk lid and big hood. The difference is obvious. The grill was different and the tail section was different. Of course the car came with the yellow bumble bee color and stripes. That scheme really was a winner and noticed right away. Throw in the hot purple color and stripes the car was another classic hot rod. Mopar fans were thrilled especially with the yellow design.
The bumble bee affect lasts years after this car did on pick up trucks and such. The decal gave the car the extra badness that Mopar wanted. They already had winners with the other cars mentioned above so they figured why not one more to choose from. The car sold great out of the gates because again it had power, looks, and that unmistakable Mopar badness for the street.

The car was a sales winner but fell victim to emission regulations and insurance companies. The insurance companies finally caught up with us and figured out 383’s, 440’s and 426 engines were making the streets of our towns drag strips. Hence, they raised rates very high, fuel prices jumped, and the engine was getting squeezed to deflate horsepower. You and I were on the bad end of the deal and getting ready to give in.

The Super Bee came late to the party and could not stay very long. Some really disliked the grill and the angles while others just were about to give into the forces I stated above.

Whatever your thoughts are about the Bee let me assure you it was a great car. It’s a great classic today with parts availability. The car just gets overlooked for the Chargers and Roadrunners. But, if you are lucky enough to get your hands on one I assure you that you will not regret it.



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