Photos by Tony Firpi
Ford's entry into the pickup truck world began in 1917 with the Ford Model TT one ton chassis. This truck proved to be a low cost, dependable means of transporting commodities for farmers and businessmen nationwide. While it was successful, Henry Ford saw the need for a lighter duty truck. In his desire to keep the price low, he designed a truck that would use most components of the upcoming Model A Ford passenger car. However, the Model A pickup was the first truck actually designed as a truck, rather than a reworked car.
On October 20, 1927, the first Model A passenger cars rolled off the assembly line at the Rouge Plant in Dearborn, Michigan. Built on the same line as Ford's passenger cars, the Model A truck became a quick success. Initially, only the open cab truck was available. The cab, built by the Briggs Manufacturing Company, was designed with a non-retractable top and side curtains made of canvas. The closed cab model became available on August 28, 1928. It was more comfortable than the open cab version, with standard roll-up windows and improved weather protection for the occupants. When the 1929 truck was shown to the public, it had only minor changes, including exterior door handles on the open cab models and new exterior colors for buyers to choose from.
All sheet metal forward of the windshield was shared with the Model A passenger car. The grille shell and headlamp buckets, while the same design as the car, were painted black, as was the one taillight housing located on the driver's side of the vehicle. Front and rear fenders and running boards were carried over from the Model A car. A front bumper was standard, while the rear bumper was available at an additional cost. All trucks included a spare tire located on the left front fender, tool kit and a hand operated windshield wiper.
The chassis was a carryover from 1928. The Model A pickup was considered a
Published Dec 7th, 2015
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