This is an original Muskin Dune Cat go kart from the 1970s, it was styled after the popular Meyers Manx dune buggy that had debuted a decade earlier, and it was powered by a single-cylinder engine mounted in the rear.

Go karts like this were wildly popular in the United States in the 1970s, they typically made do with simple tubular steel frames, a rear-mounted engine, often a Briggs & Stratton, and a single brake.

Muskin Dune Cat Brochure

Image DescriptionOnly the luckiest (or wealthiest) of kids would get a Muskin Dune Cat, and it would often inspire a lifelong love of buggies and off roading. Image courtesy of HPE Muskin.

HPE Muskin And The Dune Cat

Back in the 1970s, HPE Muskin was arguably the largest minibike manufacturer in the United States, and they sold many of their designs to the likes of Sears, Montgomery Ward, JC Penny, etc who then rebranded them and sold them nationwide.

Commonly known simply as Muskin, the company produced a range of minibikes, mini trail bikes with full suspension, mini trikes, go karts, and off road buggies.

The company was based in Colton, California and the primary development team consisted of Chief Engineer John Kunzweiler, Head Structural Design Engineer Joe Wall, Head Design Engineer Dick Patterson, and Bob Carlisle who was the Product Researcher and Draftsman.

The Muskin Dune Cat was strongly influenced by the fiberglass-bodied, VW Beetle-based beach buggies of the era, specially the Meyers Manx which was the original, developed by Bruce Meyers in the early 1960s.

The Dune Cat was targeted primarily at kids, though adults were known to drive them also when given the chance. They were given a ver simple design, as with most other Muskin products, with a tubular steel chassis, a fiberglass body, an air-cooled engine, a single brake, and very simple controls.

Muskin designs largely pre-dated the minibikes and trikes that would begin coming out of Japan in huge numbers in the 1970s and into the 1980s and beyond. Sadly the company wouldn’t survive, but their products have now become collectors’ items and enthusiast groups from coast to coast keep them running.

The Muskin Dune Cat Shown Here

The Muskin Dune Cat you see here is a well-preserved original model with a few upgrades, including a new torque converter, drive chain, sprocket, new front wheels and tires, a new mechanical disc brake.

Muskin Dune Cat Go Kart 1

Image DescriptionAs you can see the controls are very simple, with an accelerator, a brake, and a steering wheel. Any child who could reach them could operate it without any issue.

It’s powered by a 212cc Predator single-cylinder, air-cooled engine and power is sent to the rear wheels via a chain drive. It has seating for one, the seat being molded into the bodywork, with two pedals and a steering wheel making up the controls.

This Dune Cat is now being offered for sale out of Saint Louis, Missouri on Bring a Trailer with no reserve and a bill of sale. If you’d like to read more about it or register to bid you can visit the listing here.

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Images courtesy of Bring a Trailer

Published by Ben Branch -