Category: 1960

A modern design didn’t save the 1969-1975 International Pickups from plummeting sales – Pat Foster @Hemmings

A modern design didn’t save the 1969-1975 International Pickups from plummeting sales – Pat Foster @Hemmings


For 1969, there was big news in America’s truck market: the announcement by the International Harvester Company of a completely redesigned lineup of light-duty trucks, its first all-new pickups since 1957.

The new trucks were very attractive. Called the “D” series, its styling was clean, contemporary, and ruggedly handsome. Bodywork was straight and uncluttered, completely abandoning the bulbous styling of previous models. Roofs and hoods were flatter and fenders crisper, providing a family resemblance to the smaller Scout line, and body sculpting was much more subtle. A rectangular grille with a similarly shaped “International” nameplate floating inside was clean and simple, and encompassed the single headlamps. Larger window areas lent a bright, airy feel to the cabin. Taken as a whole, the new trucks had a look of modern, clean efficiency. International dubbed it the “Now” look, and it was the work of International Harvester styling director Ted Ornas and his small staff of designers

The D series being all-new inside and out meant the company could now integrate the optional air conditioning system into the instrument panel for a much neater look, while also substantially upgrading interior trim. Seats were more comfortable and instrument panels more car-like. Management belatedly realized that the light-truck market had evolved over the previous few years and the average light-truck buyer wasn’t necessarily a commercial user; he or she often was an ordinary suburbanite using a truck as a second, or even first, car. These buyers wanted a more car-like interior along with the comforts and conveniences they enjoyed in their personal vehicles. Automatic transmissions, power steering, power brakes, and AM/FM radios had become the rule rather than the exception. Even commercial buyers were looking for more comfort features, since they often spent their entire day in their trucks.

Chassis frames in 115-, 119-, 131-, 149-, and 164-inch wheelbases were all new, with improved shock absorbers and suspensions, and modern cross-flow radiators to allow a lower hood line. The popular Bonus Load bodies (i.e., straight side versus fender side) featured double-wall construction to keep shifting-cargo dings from showing on the outside. In addition to the regular two-door cabs, a Travelette four-door pickup was offered, as it had been since 1961. Available in 149- and 164-inch wheelbases, it was sort of like a Travelall with a pickup bed.

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My Very Brief Hollywood Film Career – George Holt @Hemmings


I’m the proud owner of a 1961 Ford Galaxie Town Sedan. In 2011 I got the chance to drive my car in a major motion film shoot on the streets on Manhattan. Sounds exciting, right? Well it was, but also nerve-wracking

My Galaxie is an all original, full-size 1961 base model: four doors, 6-cylinder, manual steering, manual brakes, no air. The one and only option is the two speed Fordomatic transmission.

The paint is faded, but there is no rust or dents. The speedometer/odometer cable broke at 53,000 miles which must have been at least the second time around.

A semi successful conversion from generator to alternator by a previous owner left not one gauge or warning light working on the unilluminated dash.

In all, a fun driver that I have been taking to local shows on Long Island since 2006 with my local club Empire Galaxies.

When I do go, I never go on highways. Driving from my home in the New York City Borough of Queens, I would stick to local secondary streets. It doubles or triples the drive time, but the car is a handful to maneuver and stop so high speeds and heavy traffic need to be avoided.

A notice from a film production company was sent out through my Galaxie club for anyone with a late fifties to mid-1960s car that would like to be in a film.

The production company specified they wanted “average used” cars not modifieds or concours winners.

Since mine is definitely an average used car from that era, I sent in a photo of my Galaxie and was accepted.

The film turned out to be “Not Fade Away” written and directed by David Chase who had recently completed his HBO series “The Sopranos”.

The new filmed stared James Gandolfini, John Magaro, Jack Huston, and Bella Heathcote. It was a coming-of-age story set in suburban New Jersey in the 1960s a group of friends form a rock band and try to make it big. 

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The 1960 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz was GM’s best when GM was building the best – Terry Shea @Hemmings


There was a period from the mid-1950s through the late 1960s when, it could be argued, General Motors was almost certainly building the best cars in the American market. Not only was the company the largest automaker in the world, it was also the biggest and one of the most influential corporations of any kind. GM had a swagger about it, a swagger that was backed up by an ambitious and comprehensive product line that offered something for every member of the car-buying public.
With a market share that annually approached 50 percent (and at least once crested that mark in the Sixties), GM easily bested second-place Ford and pretty much dwarfed everybody else. To achieve that sort of dominance, GM had to produce something that suited and appealed to virtually every conceivable kind of buyer, from the compact Chevrolet Corvair for budget-minded shoppers, to premium automobiles for those of serious means.
GM’s status and immense revenues at the top of the heap allowed it to invest heavily in product, at a time before badge engineering took over from actual engineering. While the man on the street often thought of Chevy competing with Ford, the folks inside Chevy were often looking to Oldsmobile or Pontiac, possibly even Buick, as competitors, each division with its own powerplants, some with their own transmissions, as well. The quality and ingenuity showed through, too, as an Oldsmobile 98 and Buick Electra might have been built on the same C-body platform, but each model felt and looked different, and had entirely different running gear.

An Olds obsession: Fred Mandrick’s A-body collection – Jeff Koch @Hemmings


There’s something to be said for knowing what you like, and going deep.

Fred Mandrick’s collection concentrates exclusively on 1968-’72 Oldsmobile A-bodies. Not even four-doors and Vista Cruisers—just two-doors and convertibles. Cutlass Supremes. 442s. W30s. Hurst Oldses. And even a car (and some parts) that never actually saw a production line—but which is an important part of the Oldsmobile story. Fred’s formidable collection features more than a dozen A-body Oldses all told, ranging from low-mileage originals to complete restorations, coupes and convertibles, and a surprising stash of NOS parts. The garage he keeps them in matches many houses we’ve visited for sheer size; it’s decked out in authentic mid-century neon, and has its own attached two-bay workshop. Hanging out next to the fully-dressed W30 455 outside his office is an all-aluminum 455 topped by four dual-throat Weber carbs, as it would have run in the Can-Am series of the early ’70s. The man does not dabble.

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Biggest Auto Show Of All – The Detroit Auto Show at Cobo Hall — The Old Motor


Today’s feature is a series of photos of the 1960 Detroit Auto Show that was held at the new Cobo Hall on November 14, 1960. The facility was built on the shores of the Detroit River in the southwestern portion of downtown Detroit located between Jefferson and Washington Avenues,Michigan Highway M-10 passes under it. The…

via Biggest Auto Show Of All – The Detroit Auto Show at Cobo Hall — The Old Motor

America’s Lowest-priced Pickup: 1960 Ford Falcon Ranchero brochure – Mark J McCourt @Hemmings


Images are from the brochure collection of Hemmings Motor News

America’s Lowest-priced Pickup: 1960 Ford Falcon Ranchero

America’s automotive marketplace was changing drastically in the postwar era, and a fast-growing segment of buyers was purchasing vehicles that placed more emphasis on smaller size and  greater economy than traditionally accepted. Ford Motor Company responded to this trend with its compact Falcon, which was proving a best-seller, and it was that platform upon which the company chose to base its second generation of stylish, light-duty Ranchero.

Read the article here

America’s Lowest-priced Pickup: 1960 Ford Falcon Ranchero

Related – The 1957 Ford Ranchero Started A Trend

1960 Ford Thunderbird Has Its Original Insides – Shaun McGlaun @FordAuthority


1960 Ford Thunderbird Has Its Original Insides

There were a lot of Ford Thunderbird fans who weren’t happy when the car moved from the sleek two-seater sports car to a larger luxury ride with a back seat. The original first-gen Thunderbird cars are small and sporty and are very popular with collectors. The larger Thunderbirds don’t have the same love from collectors. This 1960 Ford Thunderbird is an excellent example of the year

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After the Flathead the Ford Y-Block V8 Engine


The Ford Y Block V8


The venerable hot rodders favourite Ford Flathead V8 reached the end of it’s life, (at least in the States :)), in 1953 and it was followed up by the introduction of the Y Block OHV V8 in 1954.

The Y Blocks came in 239, 256 cubic inch variants for 1954, for 1955 272 and 292 cubic inch units were added.

In 1956 the 312 cubic inch motor was added to the range, this engine family ran until 1964 when it was replaced by the Windsor and Cleveland V8’s

For a really good detailed look at the Y Block V8 and where it was utilised you can read here at the website.


Shay, Pray and the Replica Car Movement Part 2


The story of Glenn Pray is very different from that of Harry Shay covered in Part 1.

Glenn Pray was a school teacher when he purchased the assets of the former Auburn Cord Deusenberg company back in 1960. Upon the winding up of E.L.Cord’s company back in 1938 the assets had been originally purchased by a Buick dealer from Flint Michigan named Dallas Winslow. Winslow has continued to offer parts and service from the original ACD building in Auburn. Upon purchase Pray moved lock stock and barrel to a former cannery in Broken Arrow Oklahoma and set up in business.

Pray gained a reputation as the foremost supplier of Auburn and Cord parts saving may valuable vehicles in the process, his cannery site becoming a must visit for all enthusiasts of the marques.

Starting in the 1960’s Glenn Pray also introduced what became the first well known replica cars, Pray preferred to call the cars “second generation” this endeavour was not a financial success.  The cars however have gained a cult following and have been recognised by the ACD club fittingly as “The Second Generation Cars”

Sadly Glenn Pray passed away in 2011

You can find a lot more from Chris Summers about ACD and Glenn Pray here

Glenn’s son Doug carried on the business and it was featured on the TV Show American Pickers

You can hear an interview with Doug on Mark Greene’s excellent “Cars Yeah” podcast here

If you ever get a chance to visit the ACD museum grab it with both hands, I visited a few years ago and it’s a wonderful place!

Visit to the ACD