Classic Truck: 1937 Hudson Terraplane
Terraplane’s Cab Pickup Express might look a little too jaunty for the job site but, by 1937 standards, this was a stout light truck. If you glanced under the rear of a Series 70, and longer wheelbase Series 78 Terraplane commercial rig, you’d see a thick pair of leaf springs—15 leaves in both—that lent these trucks a hefty ¾-ton rating.
You’d also notice the sturdy “Double Drop 2-X” frame—it was the same design used in Terraplane (as well as Hudson) cars, but it looked purpose-built for hauling. A pair of boxed side rails—71/8 inches deep at their widest point between the axles—were tied together with a massive X-shaped member in the center and a smaller X-member in front. There were also three heavy-duty crossmembers, including a new one for the 1937 model year, added at the rear kickup. The Double Drop 2-X frame was riveted together, while the boxed sections of the rails were welded in place with 142 welds. For added rigidity, the vehicles’ floors were bolted to the frames at multiple points in what Terraplane called “Monobilt” construction.