Plymouth Duster

The first Plymouth Duster was a related version to the Plymouth Valiant, which was produced in the United States from 1970 to 1976. The Duster was in competition with Ford's sporty Ford Maverick compact, which was also introduced in 1970. This car supplanted the rather ordinary Ford Falcon, which had competed with the Valiant. Working in secret, Plymouth designers and engineers pulled off a coupled coupe design that managed to fit all of the highlights of the existing Valiant platform, but provided the new and exciting product that the planners had desired. The Duster was also created to hold the slot that was formerly filled by the Valiant-based Barracuda. When the Barracuda transitioned from its A-body platform to the new E-body platform in 1970, this left a gaping opening in Plymouth's lineup for a low priced youth oriented model. This was where the Duster came in. Several versions were designed for the different market segments. For example, there was an economy version all the way up to a performance, often. Better yet, they had names such as Feather Duster, Gold Duster, Space Duster and Duster Twister. Following in the Barracuda's footsteps, the Duster was partly Valiant with the rest of the car being completely different. Using a special rear end with twin horizontal taillights, it desired to embody the performance and youthful look that Plymouth so needed. In reality, the brand name was old and people viewed them as making cars for old people. They were not tapping into the youth market, which quite frankly, was buying cars. For 1970 only, a small Valiant badge went on the front fenders just above the Duster badge. This was probably a good thing to keep the Plymouth name off the car. The Plymouth name alone would bring to mind something that the marketers did not want in the first place.