1931 Ford Model A Truck
1931 Ford Model A Pickup
Chassis No. A4828484
40 bhp, 200.5 cu. in. L-head inline four-cylinder engine, three-speed manual transmission, solid front axle and live rear axle with transverse semi-elliptic leaf springs, and four-wheel mechanical drum brakes. Wheelbase: 103.5 in.
Ford Motor Company entered the commercial vehicle market in 1905, with a Model C Delivery Car. It was what we would now call a panel van and had a so-called “C-cab,” for the open-front nature of its driving position. It was 1912 before a commercial car was added to the Model T catalog, but plenty of outsource firms and not a few handy owners managed to build cargo bodies, both open and closed, in the interim. A factory one-ton Model T chassis was introduced in 1917, but it was 1925 before a factory-built pickup was offered, not surprisingly of open-top design. By the time Model T production halted in 1927, the pickup model had acquired quite a following.
It was natural, then, for a pickup to be included in the new Model A line in October 1927. In addition to the Open-Cab (or roadster) style of the Model T pickups, there was a Closed Cab model. They were designated 76-A and 82-A, respectively. The new Closed Cab was what we might call “phone booth” style, with angular corners and a high roof, though it retained the forward-sweeping “coupe pillar” of the passenger cars. Running changes to the chassis generally followed those of the passenger cars.
When passenger Model As received a facelift for the 1930 model year, commercial styles lagged behind. It wasn’t until June of 1930 that new 76-B and 82-B pickup cabs were introduced, along with the taller radiators and higher hoods of the second generation restyle. The 82-B was given rounded corners, and the leatherette roof curved down to rain gutters atop the doors.
In May 1931, the pickup beds of both 76-B and 82-B trucks was revised, wider than its predecessor and with straight sides and a full steel floor. This required narrower rear fenders. In August, the Closed Cab body was redesigned, with the roof now a single steel stamping, braced with stamped steel stiffeners in place of the wood bracing used previously. The new cabs were built by Briggs Manufacturing Company, a long-time supplier to Ford and other automakers.
This handsome 82-B Closed Cab Pickup was acquired by its current owner, a prominent New England Model A collector, in September 2006. It had been restored by its previous owner to very high standards. Subsequent to that restoration, it received plaudits from the Model A Restorers Club, culminating in the Henry Ford Award, the Club’s most prestigious accolade. The current owner has maintained it fastidiously and campaigned it in AACA judging competition. It received AACA’s Grand National Senior First in 2012.
Finished in Cigarette Cream, one of 38 colors offered in the commercial line, it has the standard Black-Brown artificial leather interior. Built in mid-November 1931, it has all the very late Model A features, including the indented firewall and re-designed fuel tank. Model A production tapered off at the end of 1931, although some assembly plants continued building until the Model 18 V8 and Model B four-cylinder cars made their appearance in March 1932.
Commercial Model As seldom appear in the limelight, much less on the market. This late-model Closed-Cab Pickup represents a rare opportunity to acquire the best example of this very desirable model.
Have you joined the Model A Ford Club of America?