| This page is devoted to the forgotten Ford truck. The little known N-Series. If you were to ask a trucker or even a truck salesman for that matter what an N series Ford looked like, they would more than likely tell you
that they had never heard of an N series Ford, much less know what one looked like. Yet these rugged trucks were produced for seven years, from 1963 through 1969, and I might add in sufficient quantities that quite a few are still around if you look hard enough, yet very few people know what they are. They were replaced in 1970 with the famed L series Fords. Anyone even remotely related to the trucking industry knows what an L series Ford looks like. The L series is one of Ford's most successful truck models. The N series, or N cabFords as some people like to call them marked Ford's entry into the short conventional field. This completed the gap between big conventional cabs and the cab over models, and made Ford competitive with other manufactures of medium to heavy duty trucks.
I have had friends ask why I would devote a page to a little known truck, I guess it is because for some inexplicable reason I have always had a fascination with these trucks. Another reason being, I have searched the Internet for any information on these trucks to no avail. I have been able to find a few pictures, but then again very few, as I said above these trucks are the forgotten trucks. For this reason I am adding this page to my site. I was first introduced to these trucks in the sixties when my dad was working at a Ford truck dealership.
It is hard to tell one model year from the other, as there were little changes externally. The year to year changes were for the most part engine and chassis improvements, and believe me, they were plenty of these every year. If you look at the trucks closely, you will see a few differences, for example the 63 to 65 models had a flat roof, whereas the 66 to 69 had a raised roof line to give the driver more head room. Starting in 1968 as mandated by the federal government amber reflectors showed up on the side of the hood along with amber marker lights near by. So if you see a flat roof truck it is 63 to 65, raised roof without side hood reflectors is 66, or 67, and raised roof with side hood reflectors is 68 or 69. Other than these differences you would have to check the VIN number to know the year for sure.
As mentioned above I have found a few pictures on the Internet, I have given credit where applicable. Some pictures are ones I have made while others I have scanned from Ford brochures and books I have on Ford trucks.
Like other Ford trucks, the N cabs came in two trim levels. Standard cab and Custom cab. From the out side the Custom Cab trucks had chrome windshield trim, actually it was polished stainless, and chrome script on the door spelling out Custom Cab. On 63, 64, 65 the Custom Cab emblem on the door was in the form of an escushion plate mounted under the door handle with the words Custom Cab written on it. On models 65 through 69 the Custom Cab was written in script under the window. On the inside you got a two tone
instrument panel, white and chrome instrument cluster, duel armrest, white steering wheel,
lighter, courtesy lights that came on when you opened the door, sun visor on the right side.
Certain amenities changed from year to year.
When it came to engines you had choices there too. You could get anything from a six
cylinder gas engine to a V8 diesel and anything in between. The N 500 and 600s base engine
was the 223 CI six @135 HP, the 292 CI V8 @160 hp was optional. As you got into the
heaver trucks the engines got bigger. A very popular engine in these trucks was the Super
Duty engines. The Super Dutys came in three cubic inch sizes, 401, 477, and the 534. The
543 was the grand daddy of gasoline truck engines. It was probably the best gas powered
truck engine ever built. It would run all day with the diesels of the era, and never miss a
beat. You could get diesel engines of course. the most common was the inline six cylinder
Cummings, also avalible was the V6 and V8 cummings. Over the seven years this truck
was produced, engine avalibility changed almost yearly. By the end of production in 1969
you not only had a choice of Cummings, but also Catepillar and Detroit.