Today’s featured pickup is a 1959 Chevrolet Apache 31 Fleetside which replaced the Chevrolet Cameo Carrier as GM’s sporty pick up.
Like all ’59 Task Force models this Apache 31 Fleetside features subtly updated four head lamp styling featuring a narrower bonnet/hood badge to the ’58 Task Force models. The Apache Fleetside pickups were marketed with the strap line, “These are the best-looking truck cabs that ever came down the road!”
Like the ’58 Apache’s power came for either a 3.9 litre / 235 cui Thriftmaster in-line six or 4.6 litre / 283 cui Taskmaster V8, this particular example is officially registered with a 6 litre / 366 cui motor of yet to be determined origin.
Styling queues on ’59 Apache reflect mans technological advance into the space age following the launch of Sputnik the worlds first satellite in October 1957. Regular GALPOT readers might remember the front wing / fender Apache logo on the ’58 Apache featured last week resembled a jet plane, for ’59 the Apache logo resembles a rocket emitting red flames.
The big styling feature that differentiated the ’58 Cameo Carrier from the ’59 Apache Fleetside was the rocket shaped “Jet Pods” incorporated into the cab width bodywork which ran into the round tail lights.
Like the narrow width cargo box Apache 31 the Fleetside was built on a 114 inch wheel base chassis with a six and a half foot cargo box.
Thanks for joining me on this “Jet Pods” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !
In 1955 Chevrolet replaced it’s Advanced Design pickups with the Task Force range which along with squared front styling offered options that included 12 volt electrics, V8 motors and 6′, 7′ or 8′ bed lengths.
The Task Force or early era V8 Chevy pickups were built with three different cab styles from ’55 to ’59. In ’55 the first series Task Force pickups featured a cab with distinctively separate wings/fenders and bonnet/hood similar to the Advanced Design series which the Task Force replaced. Mid way through ’55 a new Task Force hood was introduced with integrated wings/fenders and bonnet/hood with a pair of head lights and in 1958 the Task Force Series cabs received a face lift distinguished by two pairs of head lights as seen here.
Power options for 1958 Apaches were either 145 hp 3.8 litre 235 cui Thriftmaster in line six or 160 hp 4.6 litre 283 cui small block Trademaster V8, today’s featured vehicle is officially recorded as having a 4 litre / 244 cui motor of yet to be determined origin.
The trim details on this workhorse were totally in keeping with the wonders of the late 50’s jet age, Apache 31 denotes that this is the 1/2 ton in the Task Force series.
After the introduction of the optional full width Fleetline bodies in 1959, an example of which I’ll be looking at next week, pick ups with non integrated rear wheel arches became known as step sides.
Apache 31’s were built on the shortest 114 inch wheel base option with a 6 and a half foot bed. With the introduction of the small block V8 to the Task Force Chevrolet maintained a dominant position in the Pickup market over Ford.
Thanks for joining me on this “Short Step Side” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !