In the Service of Racing
Back in 1957 when the series production of the Ford Thames 400E started, it won the hearts of the British compact van scene. Soon the little Ford – powered by a 53 HP strong engine (as of 1963 with 55 HP) – was seen in various off-the-shelf versions in the left-hand traffic of the British island. However there were a lot of niches, which couldn´t be served by Ford. This brought some highly motivated mechanics to the scene that wanted to fulfill these customer wishes.
Ford accommodated these specialists by selling only the chassis of the Thames 400E. Among these niche suppliers were a few specialists who built a customized bed on the bare chassis for a small racecar. That represented a genuine alternative to the expensive race trucks for the less financially strong racing teams at that time. Beside the basic versions – built out of checker plate – were also a few pick-up versions of the Ford Thames 400E race truck available. It was possible to remove the lateral and rear tailgates to enable an easy loading. Doesn´t matter which version you had, convenient was the possibility to put one or two tires between drivers cab and racecar as a buffer.
All of these different race truck versions followed the same aim – providing the racing community a cheap alternative of transport for their racecars. Even though the production of the Type Thames ended in 1965, the presence of the Ford Thames race truck in the racing scene lasted until the late 60s.
More Information: AutoCult.de