American Car Spotters Guide - 1940

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American Car Spotters Guide - 1940


The Second World War caused the end of civilian car and truck production in US manufacturers' European plants but domestic production was well up on 1939 and sales totalled 3,717,385 cars and 754,901 trucks and buses (compared with 2,888,512 and 700,377 respectively in 1939).

Most 1940 models had restyled bodywork. Among the innovations were sealed-beam headlights, and concealed running boards were generally adopted.

Military production was also stepped up. In addition to fulfilling European orders for military trucks, production for national defence was increased.

To direct this production, William S. Knudsen, president of General Motors, moved to Washington at the invitation of President Roosevelt. Dodge received contracts for 20,000 trucks for the US Army and the first 'Jeep' was produced by American Bantam.

The Automotive Committee for Air Defense was formed on 30 October to facilitate aircraft production, and Ford and Packard were contracted for the manufacture of Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce Merlin aircraft engines respectively.
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American Bantam
USA

American Bantam

   
 
American Bantam, producer of Austin Seven inspired baby cars, was the first to come up with a military ¼-ton 4 x 4 field car. in the summer of 1940. This new type of vehicle became known as "Jeep".
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Buick Special Convertible Phaeton
USA

Buick

  Also see: Buick Road Tests and Reviews | Buick Brochures
 
Buick in 1940 produced well over 300,000 cars in six series: 40 Special, 50 Super, 60 Century, 70 Roadmaster, 80 and 90 Limited, varying in price from US$895 to US$2465. Pictured left is the Series 40 Special Convertible Phaeton Model 41-C.
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1940 Buick Limited Limousine Series 80
USA

Buick Limited Limousine

  Also see: Buick Road Tests and Reviews | Buick Brochures
 
Buick also manufactured two Limited Limousines, the Series 80 with a 133 inch wheelbase, and the Series 90 with a 140 inch wheelbase.
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Cadillac Imperial Sedan
USA

Cadillac

  Also see: Cadillac Road Tests and Reviews | Cadillac Brochures
 
The Cadillac 1940 line consisted of two LaSalles and five Cadillacs. Included was the Sixty Special which had first been introduced for the 1939 model year. Only the most expensive (US$5140) Cadillac had a V16 engine: all the others had V8s. Pictured left is the Imperial Sedan.
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Checker Cab
USA

Checker

  Also see: Checker Road Tests and Reviews
 
This stylish taxicab was a product of the Checker Cab Co., a specialist taxicab builder since the early 1920s. Maybe its just us, but we reckon the Checker Cabs got a whole lot uglier as the years went on.
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25 Millionth Chevy
USA

Chevrolet

  Also see: Chevrolet Road Tests and Reviews | Chevrolet Brochures
 
General Motors' 25-millionth car, a Chevrolet sedan, came off the line in 1940. Shown at the ceremony are, from left to right: M. E. Coyle, General Manager of Chevrolet, William S. Knudsen, GM President, Alfred P. Sloan Jr, Chairman of the Board of GM, and Charles E. Wilson, Executive Vice-President of GM. Chevrolet as a Division produced its 16-millionth car in 1940, only ten months after No. 15,000,000. Chevrolet was the world's largest producer of cars and trucks.
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Chevrolet Special DeLuxe Convertible Series KA
USA

Chevrolet Special DeLuxe Convertible Series KA

  Also see: Chevrolet Road Tests and Reviews | Chevrolet Brochures
 
Chevrolet Special DeLuxe Convertible, Series KA. Engine was a 216 CID 'Stove Bolt Six', wheelbase 113 in. Convertible top was power-operated and actuated by a control on the dashboard.
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Chevrolet Special DeLuxe Convertible Series KA
USA

Chevrolet Special DeLuxe Convertible Series KA

  Also see: Chevrolet Road Tests and Reviews | Chevrolet Brochures
 
Chevrolet Special DeLuxe Convertible, Series KA. Engine was a 216 CID 'Stove Bolt Six', wheelbase 113 in. Convertible top was power-operated and actuated by a control on the dashboard.
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Chev Australia - Army Livery
Australia

Chevrolet Australia

  Also see: Chevrolet Road Tests and Reviews | Chevrolet Brochures
 
Australian Chevrolet consisted of a Canadian chassis with Holden bodywork which differed in styling from the parent design. There were two versions: Pullman 1200 and Ridemaster 1000.
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Chevy Wagon (Australia) - Army Livery
Australia

Chevrolet Australia Wagon

  Also see: Chevrolet Road Tests and Reviews | Chevrolet Brochures
 
Australian-built Chevrolet Station Wagon used by Australian Army in Egypt. Official nomenclature: 'Car, 6- Passenger, Utility (Aus)'. Note military features: opening windshield and oversize tyres.
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Chrysler Saratoga
USA

Chrysler Saratoga

  Also see: Chrysler Road Tests and Reviews | Chrysler Brochures
 
Chrysler Saratoga Model C-265 was the performance version of New Yorker (C-26N). It had a 323·5 CID 8-in-line engine. Wheelbase 128½ inches. Along with other Corporation cars, Chrysler adopted the new sealed beam headlights which gave over 50% more light in high beam. At midyear production, a special model called the Highlander was introduced as a closed coupe and convertible. It had authentic Scotch plaid and moleskin leather upholstery. The Saratoga was introduced as a performance version of the New Yorker. Two tone paint combinations became available.
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Chrysler Crown Imperial
USA

Chrysler Crown Imperial

  Also see: Chrysler Road Tests and Reviews | Chrysler Brochures
 
Chrysler Crown Imperial Model C-27 was the top-line model on a 145½-in wheelbase. The Crown Imperial had Fluid Drive, overdrive, and Power Brakes as standard equipment.
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Chrysler Fluid Drive Clutch
USA

Chrysler Fluid Drive Clutch

  Also see: Chrysler Road Tests and Reviews | Chrysler Brochures
 
Fluid Drive hydraulic clutch was available on all Chrysler Corp. cars except Plymouth and Plymouth-based DeSotos and Dodges. Chrysler also introduced safety-rim wheels and two-leading-shoe front brakes.
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DeSoto
USA

DeSoto

  Also see: DeSoto Brochures
 
DeSoto came in two series: the S-7 DeLuxe (pictured left) and Custom with 122½-in wheelbase, and a special export version SP-9 with 117½-inch wheelbase. The latter was mechanically similar to the Plymouth. Engines were CID 201·3 and 217·8 respectively.
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Dodge D-14 Luxury Liner DeLuxe Convertible
USA

Dodge

  Also see: Dodge Road Tests and Reviews | Dodge Brochures
 
Dodge had three model ranges: D-14 Luxury Liner DeLuxe (119½- and 139-inch wheelbase), 0-1 5 (117½-inch wheelbase export model, based on Plymouth) and 0-17 Luxury Liner Special (119½-inch wheelbase).
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Ford V8
USA

Ford

  Also see: Ford Road Tests and Reviews | Ford Brochures
 
Ford produced its 28-millionth vehicle on the 8th April 1940. There were three car chassis: the basic 022A 60 HP, the 01 A Standard 85 HP and the 01A DeLuxe 85 HP (all V8s), and 12 body styles.
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Ford DeLuxe Fordor Marmon-Herrington all-wheel drive
USA

Ford DeLuxe Fordor / Marmon Herrington All Wheel Drive

  Also see: Ford Road Tests and Reviews | Ford Brochures
 
Ford Model 01A-738 DeLuxe Fordor with Marmon-Herrington all-wheel drive conversion serving as military staff car in South America.
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Ford Standard Fordor Sedan - British Army
UK

Ford British Army Version

   
 
Ford 01 A-73B with oversize (9'00-13) tyres in British Army Service.
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Ford Standard Fordor Sedan - Australian Army
Australia

Ford Australian Army Version

   
 
Ford Model 01 A-73A Standard Fordor Sedan and 01-C Commercial (both 112-inch wheelbase, 85 HP) of Australian Army.
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Hudson Super Six
USA

Hudson Super Six

   
 
Hudson Six Coupe had 92-bhp engine. 113-in wb. A sedan set new AAA records for endurance by travelling 20,327 miles at an average of 70·5 mph at Bonneville, Utah.
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Hudson Eight Convertible Coupe
USA

Hudson Eight Convertible Coupe

 

 

 
Hudson Eight Convertible Coupe. In 1940 Hudson introduced coil-spring IFS and Weathermaster fresh air and heat control.
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Hudson Eight Australian Army Ambulance
Australia

Hudson Eight Australian Ambulance

   
 
Australian Army Hudson Eight with ambulance bodywork.
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1940 Hupmobile
USA

Hupmobile

   
 
Hupmobile Skylark sedan shared bodywork with Graham's Hollywood. The body dies were acquired from Cord after that company ceased operating, but unlike the Cord these cars had conventional rear wheel drive.
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1940 LaSalle
USA

LaSalle

   
 
LaSalle, Cadillac's lower-price line, was discontinued in 1940. In its last year there were two series: the 40-50 and 40-60, the four-passenger coupes of which sold at US$1240 and US$1380 respectively. Both had V8 engines.
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Lincoln Zephyr Coupe
USA

Lincoln

  Also see: Lincoln Road Tests and Reviews | Lincoln Brochures
 
Lincoln, Ford's luxury marque, came in two basic models, the 06H Zephyr and the top-line Continental. The Continental Cabriolet cost US$2840. Engines were V12. Pictured left is the Lincoln-Zephyr Coupe.
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Mercury
USA

Mercury

  Also see: Mercury Road Tests and Reviews | Mercury Brochures
 
Mercury, Ford's medium price range, was in its second model year. The 100,000th Mercury was produced on 18 January Designated 09A. All 1940 models had a 116-inch wheelbase and there were five body styles. Pictured left is the 09A-74 Convertible Sedan.
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Nash Ambassador
USA

Nash Ambassador

  Also see: Nash Road Tests and Reviews
 
The Nash Ambassador Eight Model 4081 Convertible had 125-in wb Cheapest Nash products were LaFayettes (from $795). with 117-inch wheelbase. After 1940 these were replaced by the '600' line.
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Oldsmobile Series 76 Sedan
USA

Oldsmobile Series 76 Sedan

  Also see: Oldsmobile Road Tests and Reviews | Oldsmobile Brochures
 
Oldsmobile Series 60 Club Coupe. Olds offered three series: 60, 70 and 90. Total production in 1940 was 215,028 units and the Hydramatic four-speed automatic transmission was offered as optional equipment for all models.
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1940 Packard
USA

Packard

  Also see: Packard Road Tests and Reviews
 
The Packard 110 was lowest-price Packard. A DeLuxe version was added for 1940. It sold for US$1116 as compared with US$1056 for the 110 Special (both 100-bhp 6-cyl. four-door sedans). Packard also introduced an Electromatic Clutch 120 Packard, which differed from 110 mainly in having an 8-cylinder engine (4·62-litre, 120 bhp). The wheelbase was 127inches (122 inches for the 110). The Touring sedan pictured left cost $1261. Packard also offered the 160 and 180 Super Eight models.
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1940 Plymouth
USA

Plymouth

  Also see: Plymouth Road Tests and Reviews | Plymouth Brochures
 
Plymouth offered two basic ranges: P-9 Road King and P-10 DeLuxe. Both had 117½ inch wheelbase and 201·3 CID 84-bhp six-cylinder engine. An 87-bhp engine was optional, as was an economy power unit with low 5.2:1 compression ratio, developing 65 bhp. The P-9 was also available as DeSoto and Dodge, with different front end styling.
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1940 Plymouth P-10 Club Coupe
USA

Plymouth P-10 DeLuxe

  Also see: Plymouth Road Tests and Reviews | Plymouth Brochures
 
Plymouth P-10 DeLuxe 'five-window' Club Coupe. At the other end of the range was a seven-passenger sedan.
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1940 Pontiac DeLuxe Two-Door Tourer
USA

Pontiac

  Also see: Pontiac Road Tests and Reviews | Pontiac Brochures
 
Pontiac DeLuxe Two-Door Touring Sedan, Series 26 (6-cyl.) and 28 (8-cyl). Like Oldsmobile, Pontiac used the same basic frame for both the 6 or 8-cylinder engines. Supporting the radiator frame or using a longer fan shroud made up the difference in shorter engine. In addition to the 120-inch wheelbase 26 and 28, there were 117-inch wheelbase Special Six, Series 25, and 122-inch wheelbase Torpedo Eight Series 29, models.
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Studebaker Champion Coupe
USA

Studebaker

  Also see: Studebaker Road Tests and Reviews
 
The Studebaker Champion had 110-inch wheelbase and differed from 1939 models in minor details (restyled grille and trim features). RHD Coupe shown.
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1940 Studebaker Commander
USA

Studebaker Commander

  Also see: Studebaker Road Tests and Reviews
 
Studebaker Commander and President were similar in appearance except for nameplates and wheel hub covers. The Commander had a 6-cylinder 226 CID engine and 116½-inch wheelbase, while the President had a 8-in-line 250 CID engine, 122-inch wheelbase. Front suspension was independent with transversal leaf spring.
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1940 Willys Compact
USA

Willys

  Also see: Willys Road Tests and Reviews
  Willys offered this compact 102-in wb Model 440 sedan with alligator-type hood (bonnet) and front-hinged doors. Several other body styles were available.
1940 Ford Continental Cabriolet
1940 Ford Continental Cabriolet.
1940 LaSalle Woodie Station Wagon
1940 LaSalle Woodie Station Wagon.
1940 Packard 120 Interior
1940 Packard 120 Interior.
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