• Chassis # 5837620
  • Engine # NA
  • Complete body off restoration in 2012
  • Restored to original specifications Including Oak Bed

The Overview

The early days of the light-duty truck are far from the vision that people know today. In the prewar era, personal trucks were more often than not derived from the cars of similar make and model, with a bed grafted onto the back. It was not until post-WWII that trucks took on a market of their own and were developed and designed into a separate category of road-going vehicles, heavily purchased by consumers.

Ford was massively dominant in the Pre-War light truck industry. The market shaking advent of the flathead V8 in 1932 had carried over into their truck line, and they were selling at records rates. It would take both Dodge and Chevy into the postwar years till they caught up, and in the case of Chevy, even surpassed Ford in the light-duty truck market. The 1940 and 1941 Ford V8 pickups, however, were the last of the “car derived” pickups coming off the Ford production line. Given their distinctive styling, they have a timeless and classical prewar elegance to them that would no longer be present in trucks after 1942. From this point on, the truck sector would adopt a much more rugged and utilitarian look when designing the pickups.

This particular truck, A 1940 Ford V8 Pickup, underwent a body off restoration in 2012. It was restored to its original specifications including keeping its 6-Volt charging system. It is also still fitted with the flathead V8 and 4-speed floor shifted transmission that it would have left the factory containing. Little is known about the history of this truck before its restoration but judging by the current state of the body, it was more than likely fairly well-taken care of before its refreshing. Since its comprehensive restoration, however, it has seen minimal usage, residing most of its time in the climate-controlled collection of its current owner and driven sparingly on nice weather days to shows and about town. The truck has recently had the fuel system cleaned, and the brake system refreshed to help the usability of it.

The exterior paint is fantastic. It is of great quality, smooth and consistent, and looks like it was done far more recently than 2012. While the beige color does not stand out, it is very pleasing to the eye and compliments the classic lines of the truck superbly. The panel gaps are all acceptably straight and are by all accounts probably better than when they left the factory in 1940. The minimal chrome that is present on the truck shines brightly and has little to no indication of corrosion or blemishes. All rubber trim and molding is supple and looks new. There are a few spots along the edges of the cab, such as the rain gutter, where you can see metal work has been done to delicate corners, but for the most part, it is readily acceptable repairs. The headlights function appropriately, and the glass is free of any cracks, scuffs or issues. The side mounted spare tire is an excellent touch and is in superb condition with fresh rubber and clean and well-restored wheel. The bed of the truck is extremely well done, finished with the correct style of Oakwood. It looks to have never been used after the restoration, and the wood has a smooth luster to it. There are some spots around the edge of the bed where you can see, though the paint, that some metal work has been done during the restoration of the body. It is nothing major, just not silky smooth metal, as this was, after all, a hard working utilitarian vehicle at one point in its life.

The interior of the truck mirrors the outside in many ways. The spartan nature of the cab does not lend much flash or glam but is all nicely restored, correct and exactly how it would have left the factory. The interior again, looks like it was restored a month ago, not in 2012, with minimal visible signs of usage anywhere. The seat is finished in what appears to be the correct material, free of any pulls, wrinkles, tears etc. The steering wheel and dash are likewise clean and clear of any issues. The knobs on the dash, as well as the handle for the accessory spotlight, appear to be in an original but clean state. The gauge cluster is in a similar state, appearing to be original but well preserved or cleaned up. The floor has a correct style thick rubber ribbed floor mat covering it and the floors beneath that are clean and issue free.

The engine bay is very tidy and properly appointed. The engine is clean, and the paint covering the valve covers etc. is all still in fantastic shape. It has the appropriate ford stamped rubber hoses running back from the radiator which look to be in excellent shape. All electrical gear is in good looking standing with the proper braided cloth covered spark plug wires. Inner fenders are smooth and wrinkle free, displaying as they should for a well-restored truck. No leaks or drips are readily apparent when looking over the engine. The underside of the truck is well done and shows only minimal signs of usage much like the rest of the truck.

The truck fires to life with a little prodding from the starter system. Care must be taken to not flood the system when starting as it is very easy to do. Once to life, the engine idles smoothly. The clutch engages well and the truck shifts easily through all the gears. One must be sure to shift slow and smooth between the gears as these old gearboxes are a bit tricky to shift smoothly without grinding. The brakes work fantastically after their refresh and the suspension is relatively quiet and compliant given the technology Ford was working with at the time. Overall this truck is quite mechanically sound and should need nothing to be thoroughly shown and enjoyed.

This 1940 Ford V8 Pickup is a rare find, being correct all the way down to its quirky 6-Volt electrical system. Often when people are restoring these trucks, they will add some modern touches here and there to help everyday livability, but it is indeed a wonderful sight to see one exactly as it left the factory. This Ford V8 is the perfect truck to show and enjoy and needs nothing but a new owner to take the wheel and pilot it down picturesque country lanes.