What is in this article?:
- WardsAuto Flashback â December 2013
- 70 Years Ago (December 1943): Civilian Truck Output Allocated; Packard Merlin Production to Double; Electric Window Motors Seen
- 60 Years Ago (December 1953): Pontiac’s ’54 Firsts; New Yorker Adds HP
- 50 Years Ago (December 1963): Record 1963 Sales; Studebaker U.S. Output; New Chrysler Plants
- 25 Years Ago (December 1988): AWD Car Sales Off; Beretta Ragtop Confirmed; Chrysler TC Arrives
Plymouth leads, Packard's Merlin soars, Star Chief rises, Studebaker quits, Baretta goes ragtop in December news from the WardsAuto archives
70 Years Ago (December 1943): Civilian Truck Output Allocated; Packard Merlin Production to Double; Electric Window Motors Seen
The federal government’s War Production Board has given Chevrolet the largest share of its planned 123,492-unit 1944 civilian truck production allocation. Chevy will be allowed to build 33,122 trucks in the coming year as against’s 28,149 units International Harvester’s 19,633, Dodge’s 10,387 trucks and GMC’s 9,851-unit allotment.
Manufacturers of medium- and heavy-duty trucks account for the remainder of the allocation, ranging from 4,505 for Mack to a single unit for Doane. Truck makers caution that heavy schedules of military-vehicle output means civilian truck production likely won’t reach significant numbers until second-quarter 1994, and then only if enough components can be procured from material- and labor-short components suppliers.
Packard is expected to build twice as many Rolls-Royce Merlin aircraft engines in 1944 as it did in record-year 1943. Packard manufacturing plants are currently working between 54 and 55 hours weekly (as opposed to 60 hours and more at some manufacturers) with the shorter week representing the maximum time allowed in a 7-day period for female workers that account for 30% of Packard’s workforce.
Power windows are among the latest topics of discussion in WAR’s The Cars of the Future series. Citing a litany of problems with the vacuum and hydraulically actuated systems introduced in a handful of ’42 models, the publication opines, “If automatic operation is desired, the cure for this evil (problems) would seem to the be in placing a small individual motor in each door to adjust the glass rather than sustain the operating liabilities obvious in the ’42 model installations.”