America is a car culture. It was raised on the road, whether on family road trips to see relatives or through commerce that shuttled from city to city on trucks. The Car of the Week takes a look at one of those vehicles as a way to not only look back at automotive changes but the history that created them.
Published in the Tacoma Weekly
If anything is absolute in the automotive business it’s that all good things come to an end and find themselves replaced by other models and ideas.
Such is the case with the revered Model A. The Ford Model A had first rolled off the line in 1928 as an upgraded replacement of the Model T that was almost two decades old when it was discontinued. The Model A included four color options as opposed to just black offered by the Model T, as well as a new chassis and engine. It was an immediate hit and sold two million cars after just two years of production, largely because of its affordability. Models ranged from $500 to $1,200. But it was a short-lived success. Production ended in 1932 with 4.8 million cars on the roads.
After just four years of production, Ford needed to redesign the model because of the rapidly changing needs of car customers. Enter the 1932 Ford Sedan Delivery model, the first economical V-8 on American roads. Because of their reliability and their use as delivery trucks, few of them survive, although kit versions are easily available. The 1932 Sedan Delivery is also popular with car customizers because of its durability and signature design. The car in the LeMay collection, for example, was restored and customized by Dan's Rod and Custom in Hancock, Michigan. The shop is well known for its award-winning Deuce Delivery conversions. The mechanical and finishing work was completed by the car's former owner John Stimac, owner of Hot Rod Shop of Milwaukee.
The car is powered by a 1953 Mercury 286 engine with all-new Ross pistons and dual-exhaust system. The transmission is a 1939 Ford three-speed, manual that was completely rebuilt with NOS bearings that won it a feature in Rod and Custom Magazine in 2009 and the 2011 Goodguys Pacific NW Best Commercial entry award. The car was donated to America's Car Museum by Gerald Greenfield of Lake Tapps.