Summer Rewind—The best of Old Sled Zone Sightings: 1970’s Arctic Cat Pantera

Old Sled Sighting: 1970’s Arctic Cat Pantera—a ‘Rat Sled’

A rusting, forgotten Arctic Cat Pantera snowmobile.
A rusting, forgotten Arctic Cat Pantera snowmobile. Photo courtesy Keith Powell

Over the summer we are pleased to rewind our most popular Old Sled Sightings from our SnoRiders Old Sled Zone page by re-posting the Top 10 most popular posts from last year.

From the dozens and dozens of Old Sled Sighting posts we have selected the best by reader reach. Do you have an Old Sled story or photos to share? Email SnoRiders at [email protected]

We are pleased to re-run these Top 10 most popular Old Sled Sightings postings, ranked by the number of people reached each week with our Facebook postings. We had a tie for #10.

#4 - Old Sled Sighting: 1970’s Arctic Cat Pantera—a ‘Rat Sled’ — (Reach 985)

So what’s a “rat sled?” It’s sort of my own definition of an old snowmobile you might find abandoned in a field, stashed behind a barn, tucked away against a wooden fence or languishing in some other unprotected environment—left to rust away and exposed to the elements.

A view of the back of the sled.
Another view of the sled. Photo courtesy Keith Powell

This old 1970’s (possibly 1980’s) Arctic Cat Pantera definitely falls into the "rat sled" category. I discovered it sitting outside in the rain and snow behind a rural shop (along with a half dozen other rusting snowmobiles).

The Arctic Cat Pantera was produced starting in the early 1970’s and was often called the “Cadillac” of snowmobiles. This was for its smooth ride, distinctive profile and powerful engine. As one reviewer stated, “No one could mistake the Pantera profile for any other brand. It was a fashion statement with sloping hood, chromed bumpers front and rear, high headlight and ample wind-deflecting windshield.”

This old Arctic Cat “rat” sled retains little of the machine’s past glory but Arctic Cat enthusiasts are sure to remember the grand old days of these early Panteras.

Got an old sled story or photos to share? Send them to: [email protected]

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