Cargo Hungry: 1963 Dodge D500 Car Hauler

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If you’re like me and enjoy watching the show Roadkill on YouTube (and if you haven’t yet, you’re missing out), you’ve witnessed the awesomeness that is a good work truck. You see, the co-hosts go around the country seeking out new projects that are inevitably rough around the edges and need some (a lot) of work. When they find a vintage truck project, I never fail to be impressed by just how useful they still are – especially considering these rigs are approaching 50 years old. This 1963 Dodge D500 car hauler here on eBay is downright pretty compared to some of the vehicles they’ve bought, but it looks just as effective at becoming a highly functional part of its next owner’s fleet. 

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The Dodge D-Series trucks have a long-standing reputation for being proven work rigs in a variety of forms, from dump bodies to moving vans. Although not seen much on the roads anymore, I have little doubt one couldn’t be put back into service with ease. In the case of this example here, sent in by eagle-eyed Barn Finds reader Charles H., it never really stopped working. Up until just recently, it was an actively-used farm truck in Arkansas. The current owner bought it from the farm itself during an estate sale, which is when the hauler body replaced the stake bed. While utilitarian in nature, the interior looks clean and functional with an untorn bench seat.

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While that may seem like an insult to the truck’s excellent originality, give the seller some credit – he made the conversion so he could haul his gasser to the track! What a good use for a good truck like this. It still retains its original 318 V8 and 4-speed drivetrain, stowed safely underneath that sweet hood ornament. These trucks are known for having rigorous rust-proofing carried out by the factory and lots of smart reinforcements made throughout the body, including welded construction with box-section beams at stress points (thanks to Old Dodges for the info). Based on what we can see in the photos, the truck body looks to be in excellent condition.

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Here you can see the Dodge hard at work in its previous life (and configuration) doing the dirty work. Notice how nice the cab is, with lots of shine still left in the paint. For some odd reason, I yearn to become a farmhand for a week, solely for the privilege of bouncing across fields in an old work truck. Of course, I realize farm life is much, much more than driving loads here and there, but old trucks and open ranges go together like chips and salsa (a belated happy Cinco de Mayo to you all, on that note). This old Dodge has a Buy-It-Now of $4,495 which seems downright reasonable to me for a clean, reliable and eminently classic American work truck. What do you think?

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Comments

  1. Chebby

    So if he bought it to bring his gasser to the track, why is he selling now after only having driven around a parking lot?

    • Seth

      Probably find out hof much gas these eat when driven on the highway and wishes he had a Dodge Cummins

    • Francisco

      Some people are just not good liars.

  2. Dave Wright

    The problem with these old trucks is power and fuel economy. There are enough older diesel trucks around to be found inexpensive these days, they have so much power compared with these old work horses, better economy, comfort, safety and cheeper insurance rates it is tough to put one of them to work. My brother had an old service truck at the shop he had used for years. He found when he upgraded to a newer vehicle he saved the realitive cost of the payment by the decrease in his insurance rates. My 1993 6.5 turbo diesel will out pull any gas engine of its time and has A/C, rides good, easy to get pats for. It still gets 16 MPG. If you need a tool to haul and move things something like this is not the best choice for the money.

  3. Big Andy

    Unfortunately, these trucks were available with the 540 5 speed OD transmission. When these trucks were being built it was an extra option available for another $60.00. Most people bought the stock trucks. Most people do not even believe that there is a New Process 5 speed 540 O.D. They are so rare many people don’t believe they exist. This option was available on the older D100-D500 trucks. Nice truck, too bad it doesn’t have the 5 speed OD.
    If it did it would be well worth it.

  4. Ed P

    Creature comfort was not a big issue at Dodge when this was made. All Dodge trucks, down to the D100 had a solid front axel and leaf springs at all 4 corners. The ride was never forgiving. For a work truck, this one is in surprising condition.

  5. Howard A Member

    Not sure where I saw this truck before, I thought it was here, or Hemmings. Anyway, in the comments of that thread, we pretty much determined this would be down right dangerous as a car hauler. The vehicle weight would be too far behind the rear axle, causing the front end to be light, and adverse handling ( on an already dangerous setup). This is a great example of this style truck, Dodges weren’t very popular, but every much as bulletproof as the others. A flatbed or dump should be put back on or maybe haul a small tractor. Cool find.

  6. Dolphin Member

    I think the reason he’s selling it so soon is that it’s not actually a “car hauler”.

    If he has a gasser that he wants to haul, but he’s selling his hauler shortly after buying it, it’s probably because it won’t fit onto the truck. That’s probably why we got all those photos of the underside, but no photos of the back half of the truck where the car hauling is supposed to happen.

    What puzzles me is why somebody would buy a car hauler that’s too short for what he wants to haul.

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