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  • 1950 Ford F1 pick-up for sale
  • 239ci flathead V8 engine
  • Lots of documented recent work
  • Extensive history file


The Ford F-Series revolutionised the pick-up market in the United States, and the F1 being offered for sale here is a nicely restored, extremely original example of this best-selling model.

Built between 1948 and 1952, the first-generation F-Series was offered in a variety of models. The most common was the F1 – a half-ton pick-up – and the range went all the way up to the F7 and F8, which were built as heavy-duty variants such as fire trucks.

This particular Ford F1 was built in 1950 and features a column-mounted shift for the three-speed gearbox – it was during that year that Ford switched from a floor-mounted gearlever. It also has the small rear window that would be replaced with a larger version as part of a facelift for 1951, as well as the 100hp, 239ci (3.9-litre) V8 engine. The other option for this generation of F1 was a 95hp, 226ci (3.7-litre) six-cylinder unit.

It’s thought that this F1 stayed in the United States from new all the way up until 2002, when it was exported to the UK via Balsinger Motors in Texas. It had been acquired by a London-based company that sold machinery for mining, construction and civil engineering, but it was sold in 2008 to an enthusiast who has owned it ever since.

The bodywork and rear deck were stripped and repaired, with the panels remaining all original, and the suspension and braking system were rebuilt. The flathead V8 engine had already been rebuilt at an earlier date. 

The wiring was renewed and a 12-volt conversion carried out, while the correct wheels were sourced – and painted in body colour, as per the original finish – and new tyres fitted. A photographic record of the work, as well as the associated invoices, is included in the Ford’s history file. There is also a copy of the Shop Manual for the 1949-50-51 Ford F-Series.

With its ‘step-side’ bodywork, painted-metal interior with simple bench seat, and torquey V8 engine, this Ford F1 is perfectly evocative of rural America in those early post-war years, and it’s easy to see why this era of pick-up truck has acquired such a strong following in recent years.


Traditionally, pick-up trucks had been basic, utilitarian workhorses, but when Ford introduced its F-Series in January 1948, its intention was to create something that would appeal to a wider audience by being more comfortable and easier to drive. 

Ford invested heavily in this new approach, designing a new chassis – its earlier pick-ups had been based on car chassis – and paying particular attention to the quality of the interior and the driving experience. The doors were wider than on previous models, the heating and ventilation systems were improved, the bench seat was adjustable, and the whole cab – dubbed the ‘Million Dollar Cab’ because of the investment involved – was mounted in such a way that it reduced vibration and noise. Standard equipment included an ashtray, glovebox and a sun-visor for the driver.

The F-Series was an immediate success, and in 1950 Ford sold 346,000 of all types. Assembly was carried out at plants all over the USA, from Edison in New Jersey to Long Beach in California, and it has remained in production ever since. A second-generation line-up was introduced in 1953, and 70 years later Ford announced that it had sold more than 700,000 F-Series trucks during 2023. That made it the best-selling truck in the USA for the 47th consecutive year. 

Along the way, the Ford pick-up has become a central part of the American automotive landscape, favoured by celebrities from John Wayne to Lady Gaga, kick-started the monster-truck scene courtesy of Bigfoot, and starred in countless films.

Car Storage in the Cotswolds at The Classic Motor Hub

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