Not Your Everyday Ford Pickup

This 1940 Ford Pickup’s Rare Restoration With Plenty of Performance

By Brian Brennan   –   Photography By Wes Allison

Ford Motor Company produced “only” slightly more than 45,000 pickups in 1940, making it one of the rarer Fords. That’s a shame, as all of us can see it truly is a good-looking pickup and one many a hot rodder would truly enjoy having as a daily driver. Joe Gregorio, of SoCal, owned this 1940 Ford pickup for some time before deciding to “make it run.”

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05 Classic 1940 Ford pickup truck featuring a Ford 9 inch rear end

After a visit to Bryan Wheeler of Wheeler’s Speed Shop in Huntington Beach, California, a plan was worked out. Wheeler opted to use a custom Total Cost Involved chassis that features their Independent Front Suspension, which comprises TCI spindles, coilover shocks, rack-and-pinion, and a Wilwood brake kit. The brakes are made up of drilled rotors and Dynalite calipers in both the front and the rear that are operated by an ABS power brake system with an electric booster. In the back, the suspension is based on a Ford 9 inch rear end with 4.11 gears and 31-spline axles along with a TCI four-bar suspension.

Read More: Head Turning Chevy 210 Cruiser

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06 Vintage Ford pickup with Wheel Vintiques color matched steelies

Adorning the corners are Wheel Vintiques color-matched steelies (18×8 in front and 17×9 in back) with trim rings, Ford V8 script caps, and accented with a “triple play” of pinstriping that is comprised of two thin stripes (lighter body color) on either side of one thicker stripe (cream). Encompassing the steelies are RSA Goodyear tires, measuring 225/60R16 and 275/60R17.

09 Restored 1940 Ford pickup featuring C Cook Enterprises custom valve covers

Moving this 1940 Ford pickup down the road is a Ford Performance iron small block based 427 with 10.5:1 compression and aluminum heads. Enhancing the hi-po heads are C. Cook Enterprises custom valve covers, including the “Ford” name. Providing looks, functionality, and performance is the combination of a fully detailed, thorough paint and brightwork, Vintage Air Front Runner, and a Borla 8-Stack V8 EFI throttle body topped with C. Cook Enterprises air cleaners. The engine management system is based on a Holley Dominator with eight Holley Smart Coils remotely mounted. The exhaust is also a work of art in that they are custom made from 1-3/4-inch stainless steel and fully polished throughout back to and including the pair of MagnaFlow mufflers. Receiving the 535 hp and the 545 lb-ft is a Ford 4R70W transmission with a 10-inch converter operating with a 3,500-rpm stall speed and moved by a floor-mounted Lokar Performance Products shifter.

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Read More: The Boss 427 Ford Should Have Built

11 Radiator keeping the 427 Ford engine cool

The body is what appears to be a stock 1940 Ford pickup with several tasteful custom touches. The front and rear bumpers come by way of a 1940 Merc while 1939 Ford headlights and 1937 Ford tail lights are used. From here it was copious amounts of bodywork by Alan Palmer who then painted the sheet metal in Axalta Regency Red.

13 Vintage Ford pickup with an interior by Gabe’s Street Rod Custom Interiors

Next up Gabe’s Street Rod Custom Interiors covered the Glide Engineering bench seat with a coffee-colored leather material that was also used on the headliner, door, and kick panels. The factory dashboard now sports Vintage Air AC and heat registers that direct the cool climes from the Vintage Air AC system with its controls mounted to a below-the-dash panel that also accommodates a pair of air registers. Mounted within the factory dashboard are a Classic Instruments‘ custom-faced yet factory-appearing gauge package with a 140-mph speedo and an 8,000-rpm tach. Accessory gauges include water, fuel, volts, and oil instruments all updated for today’s engine and transmission. Mounted to the lower portion of the dash is a LimeWorks steering column accessorized with a LimeWorks turn signal mechanism and then the column is topped with a recreation of a 1940 Ford steering wheel. Bringing everything to life is an American Autowire system wired into place by the craftsman at Wheeler’s Speed Shop.

16 Restored 1940 Ford pickup truck with a 1940 Ford steering wheel recreation

Read More: Timeless 1955 Ford Fairlane Victoria

If you want an everyday pickup (and what hot rodder doesn’t?), here is as prime of an example as exists. Fortunately for all of us, Joe was able to find one of these rare 1940 Ford pickups and bring it back to life that all of us can appreciate. MR

17 Classic Ford pickup truck with a Classic Instruments custom faced gauge package

Click on this issue’s cover to see the enhanced digital version of Just Your Everyday Pickup.

mr march 2024

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