AJ’s Car ( Or in this case, truck ) of the Day: 1953 Dodge Power Wagon

AJ’s Car ( Or in this case, truck ) of the Day: 1953 Dodge Power Wagon

Car ( Or in this case, truck ): Dodge Power Wagon

Year: 1953

What makes it special: The Dodge Power Wagon is a four wheel drive medium duty truck that was produced in various model series from 1945 to 1981, then as a nameplate for the Dodge Ram from 2005 to 2013, and, most recently ‘13-present, as an individual model marketed by Ram Trucks. It was developed as the WDX truck, and until about 1960 it was internally known by its engineering code T137 – a name still used for the original series by enthusiasts. The original civilian version, commonly called the “flat fender” Power Wagon or FFPW, was mechanically based on Dodge’s 3/4-ton WC series of World War II military trucks. The Power Wagon was the first mass-produced 4×4 medium duty truck, and represents a significant predecessor to the many modern four wheel drive trucks in use today. Updated variants continued in production until 1964.

What made it famous: Meant to compete with military-based Ford/Marmon-Herrington and GMC trucks, it had an enclosed all-weather civilian cab and a purpose-designed 8-foot cargo box. It had a 126 inch up to a 147″ wheelbase chassis and featured the 230 cubic-inch flathead inline-six engine, a 4-speed manual transmission, a two-speed 1.96-1 ratio low range transfer case for part time 4-wheel drive with a power take off, or PTO which would send power front or rear for operating auxiliary equipment, and 9.00/16-8 ply tires on 16×6.50 inch 5-stud split ring steel rims. In 1961 the 230 was replaced with the 251 cubic-inch flat head six.

Why I would want one: This to me is the ultimate four-wheel- drive truck. It has the clearance and gearing to go just about anywhere. It’s a kickass off-road vehicle.

Fun fact: Following Chrysler Corporation policy of badge engineering to provide a greater number of sales outlets overseas, Power Wagons were also marketed around the world under the Fargo and De Soto badges.