Ride Of The Week: 1948 Nash Tow Truck

Ride Of The Week: 1948 Nash Tow Truck

The Nash "Haul-Thrift" truck was destined to become a machine that you didn't see every day. From 1947 to 1954, Nash built only 4,998 of them.

A 1948 Nash factory-built wrecker is only one of the many rarities to be found at the Wisconsin Automotive Museum in Hartford, WI. The hard-to-find hauler joins other unique attractions in a museum that focuses on Nash, Kissel and AMC automobiles, all of which were made in Wisconsin. It is also the home of the Southeast Wisconsin Short Track Racing Hall of Fame.

Charles Nash was the president of General Motors prior to 1916. Then, he decided to buy the Thomas B. Jeffery car company headquartered in Kenosha, WI. By the ‘20s, Nash was making cars bearing his own name. Nash Motor Co. thrived in the 1930s and 1940s. After World War II, Nash made compact Ramblers, but also dabbled in truck building for a short time.

The Nash “Haul-Thrift” truck was destined to become a machine that you didn’t see every day. From 1947 to 1954, Nash built only 4,998 of them. They came in two similar models: the 3148 with a 133-inch wheelbase and the 3248 with a 157-inch wheelbase.

Nash trucks were made primarily for export to other countries. However, Nash dealerships in the United States could each order one of them to use as a tow truck. What could be cooler than having a tow truck of the same brand as the cars you serviced and sold?

Both Nash trucks were powered by the company’s reliable 234.8-cid overhead valve in-line six-cylinder engine. It produced 104 hp at 3400 rpm and drove through a four-speed gearbox. A five-speed and a Timken double-reduction hypoid vacuum-shift rear axle that increased the number of forward “gears” to eight were available at additional cost.

The Nash trucks—both models—had 14,000-pound GVW ratings with the standard axle or 15,500 pound GVW ratings with an optional two-speed rear axle. Eight-ply 7.00 x 20 tires were standard equipment and 10-ply 8.25 x 20s could be ordered at extra cost.

These Nash commercial vehicles had fancy styling for a truck. That’s because the body panels used for the fenders, hood, cab and instrument panel came from the Nash’s Ambassador, a rather luxurious passenger car. The Nash trucks’ radiator grilles also had simplified copies of the Ambassador’s grille. Brown vinyl upholstery was used to make the inside of the cab a little bit fancier than the average truck interior of that era.

Even the smaller truck’s wheelbase was a foot longer than that of the Ambassador car and its frame construction was strictly heavy-duty. Leaf springs with auxiliary helper springs were used all around. The front and single-speed rear axles were Timken-Detroit units and large Lockheed brakes supplied stopping power.

The Nash wrecker in the Hartford Museum was owned and operated by Metzler Sales of Oshkosh, WI, which was a Nash dealer and later sold AMC, Jeep and Renault cars. The truck is finished in white with blue fenders and a blue tow boom.

Article courtesy Speedville.

You May Also Like

Standard Motor Products Introduces 200 New Numbers

The release provides new coverage in 60 distinct product categories and 75 part numbers for 2023 and 2024 model-year vehicles.

Standard Motor Products, Inc. (SMP) announced it released 200 new part numbers in its May new number announcement. This most recent release provides new coverage in 60 distinct product categories and 75 part numbers for 2023 and 2024 model-year vehicles, according to SMP.

As vehicle technology evolves, Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) become more complex to keep vehicle occupants safe. New releases include 18 new Park Assist Cameras, adding coverage for more than 9 million import and domestic vehicles, as well as Park Assist Sensors for Ford, Kia and Nissan vehicles. Seven ABS Speed Sensors have been added covering many popular vehicles, including 2019 Chevrolet and GMC 1500 trucks, the 2024-20 Cadillac CT4 and the 2023-19 Nissan Titan XD. Electronic Parking Brake Actuators are new for the 2023-19 RAM 1500 and Ford vehicles like the 2021-20 Escape and 2023-21 Mustang Mach-E. Accelerator Pedal Sensors are newly released for the 2023-22 Hyundai Tucson and 2023 Kia Sportage.

CRP Industries Announces New VP of Finance

Luis Vargas will provide CRP with financial leadership, planning and analysis.

ASE Spring Testing is Underway

Those who register by June 30 will have 90 days to schedule an appointment to take their selected ASE tests.

Advance Auto Parts Celebrates ‘National Road Trip Day’

Advance’s “Check Your Battery, Not Your Bag” campaign offers free gift cards for road trip essentials and curbside services, beginning National Road Trip Day – Friday, May 24.

Lumileds to Sell Lamps/Accessories Business to First Brands

Lumileds’ automotive lamps factories in China, Germany and Poland are included in the acquisition.

Other Posts

Hunter Engineering Releases New Alignment Coverage

The semi-annual specification update includes new and existing records.

FCS Introduces 42 New Numbers in May

Complete strut assemblies, shock absorbers, shock absorber assembly kits and suspension struts for popular VIO applications are included.

NHTSA Issues New Standard for Automatic Emergency Braking

The rule makes AEB standard on all passenger cars and light trucks weighing up to 10,000 lbs. by September 2029.

MEYLE Expands Electronics, Sensor Product Portfolio

The focus is on assistance systems and engine and transmission management, with more than 300 new part numbers.