Update: Long Hauler 1964 GMC Suburban 2500

UPDATE – We featured this 1964 GMC Suburban last spring and since then it’s been somewhat updated and has had a lot of maintenance and bodywork done on it. It’s for sale again here on craigslist in Kelso, Oregon Washington with a higher asking price of $9,500. Check out the new listing to see all of the work that has been done. Thanks to Andria A. for sending in this updated tip! Here is the listing in case the ad goes away.

FROM 4/2/2020 – Jamie just showed us a ’56 Chevy shorty, so would this one-ton 1964 GMC Suburban 2500 be considered a longy? It looks like a somewhat simple Photoshop exercise with those unusual windows on the side doors and almost the exact same wear on both doors as if one of them was copied, but this is a real truck. This long hauler can be found here on craigslist in Lewiston, Idaho, right on the western border with Washington state. The seller has a $7,500 price listed. Thanks to Ken for sending in this tip!

Yep, here we go again, there are basically three exterior photos and there is only one photo showing the whole truck from the side, or at an angle showing most of a full side – arguably its strongest selling point. There are no photos at all showing the driver’s side?! We’ll have a cure for every disease known to humans before we ever figure out why some sellers don’t provide enough photos in an online sales listing. But, you’ve heard that too many times from me, sorry. Hey, I only want the best photos for our readers! Ok, back to this stretched Suburban. From what photos they do show, this looks like a solid truck.

This really looks like a solid example, something that we would never see this far east of Idaho with the road salt here. They do include a photo of the underside and it looks rock-solid. The GMC 2500 is a one-ton truck and the seller says that this is a custom build from the Coach Motor Company. With the sliding side windows, I’m guessing that it would have been some sort of passenger vehicle.

Here’s the only interior photo and it shows us a huge cargo space behind the cab, which would have been nice to see. Were there seats in this rig? They show a photo of the rear roof area and the roof-mounted lights make me think that this may have been some sort of school bus or another type of passenger bus? The seller says that it has a 4-speed.

The engine is, I believe, a 305E cubic-inch V6. They show a photo of a tag listing the engine as a 305E with 142 net hp but they have it listed as an 8-cylinder. It runs and drives well, according to the seller. Any thoughts on this stretched GMC? Was it a passenger bus?


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  1. Motoman

    Looks like an old fire dept ambulance high amp alternator etc.

    Like 24
  2. Gaspumpchas

    Sure would make a great camper, or small house in case you get into trouble with the war dept. Coool rare body with the extra door and clean, Don’t ever see something this clean that hasn’t had the bejesus beat out of it. Wonder how it sounds with the duals? If the Jimmy mill works out good leave it or swap in a sbc for reliability. Good luck to the new owner!!!

    Like 12
  3. local_sheriff

    With that color, the air inlet and bullet lights on the roof I’m instantly thinking some kind of ambulance or fire truck. However, according to the Coachbuilt site Novelty Carriage Works converted to bus production in the late 40s.

    If seller’s story is right, maybe it simply served as a combined bus/ goods hauler for the mentioned Indian reservation?

    Like 5
  4. Al

    Are the side windows in the back original??

    I believe the original was lapping glass with no (metal) frame at the lap.

    Like 5
  5. Mike

    Just when you’ve seen just about every oddball variation of 50’s & 60’s trucks/4×4’s, something different pops up.

    Like 12
  6. John R Wice

    I have seen 3 somewhat similar, all were originally EMT type vehicles that also doubled as ambulances. One had also been used to haul forest service firefighters.

    Like 5
  7. AZVanMan

    Again, just WOW. The 305V6 is probably the best feature, a bullet-proof engine. And wasn’t the 2500 a 3/4 ton, even in ’64?

    Like 10
  8. Maverick

    The pistons were the size of coffee cans.

    Like 5
  9. angliagt angliagt Member

    I had a ’60 Chevy Apache 1 ton.Looked liked this,but in much better
    shape,& only 5100 miles! It was originally a small fire department ambulance.
    It was,like this,20 feet long.
    It was probably the coolest vehicle I’ve ever had,& I never heard a
    negative comment about it.
    I sold it because it was too nice to be kept outside in the Winter.

    Like 3
  10. alphasud Member

    Wasn’t the V6 part of a modular engine where they made a V12? I think I saw a GMC V12 one time. Wouldn’t that make a cool custom hot rod! Would need a 100 gallon fuel tank to go 200 miles between fill-ups😂

    Like 6
    • geomechs geomechs Member

      The 702 V-12 got a lot of its parts from the GMC parts bin. However, the block and crankshaft were purpose-built as a V-12. They were essentially (2) 351 V6 engines otherwise…

      Like 25
  11. DrewP

    “Almost the exact”……😞

    Like 2
  12. Bob C.

    Glad to see that big ol’ v6 in there instead of a swapped in 350.

    Like 8
  13. Tom S.

    Cool rig. Craigslist seems like a contest for bad photography.

    Like 7
  14. Car Nut Tacoma

    Sweet looking GMC Suburban. This looks like it would make a great restoration project, or a good daily driver with some careful modifications to it.

    Like 2
  15. Comet

    That V12 gas engine pic is fascinating, thanks geomechs. What was it commonly used in?

    Like 4
  16. ChrisCo

    Suburban S/S, Super Suburban.

    Like 2
    • Sean

      This is a 3/4 ton with a V/6. So cheeez all ya want.

  17. BR

    2500 is not a one ton! And GM did have a 305 V-8 engine. Geez!

    Like 4
    • Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      BR, what did I miss?
      “GMC model numbers for 1/2, 3/4, 1, and 1.5 ton were 1000, 1500, 2500, and 3000.”

  18. chnkymnky

    Hmmmmmmm…wonder what kinda mpg this would get…hmmmmm…

    Like 1
  19. BruceB

    A guy I worked with in the 80’s had one of these from the late 60’s. Six of us fit easily going to lunch. One time he stopped at the lumberyard on the way back and loaded in 8 sheets of plywood. It all fit and the rear doors closed with room to spare.

    Like 5
  20. stevee

    This style extended hauler was used for “crummies” to carry loggers out to sides and back. Maybe a fire dep’t rig? Most of the logger ones were thoroughly used. Wasn’t the GMC V6 a 306 cid? Unique sound, too.

    Like 3
  21. Mountainwoodie

    I’ve seen this third door on a number of early sixties extended cab Chevies, I think its the drivers door turned around? Any thoughts?

    Cool, super cool rig.Guarantees that folks will stay out of your way!

    Like 2
    • Don

      It looks to me like it’s a front passenger door just moved backwards!

      Like 4
  22. James West

    Fuel filter too close to exhaust….

    Like 2
  23. Mr Dave

    It’s actually Kelso WASHINGTON

    Like 1
    • Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      Thanks, Mr Dave, fixed it.

  24. Otto Leslie

    Listing has been removed.

  25. gbvette62

    Those are 60 Plymouth tail lamps mounted on the roof. If the lamps have been there since the conversion was done in 64, this thing was likely used by a fire department. Even in the 60’s, red lights were limited to police and fire departments, while school buses, construction equipment, tow trucks, etc, were required to use orange/amber lights.

    This things pretty neat. The listings been deleted, so good luck to the new owner!

    Like 3
  26. A.G.

    These vehicles were fairly common on military bases in both panel and pickup forms.

  27. Bunky

    It’s big, it’s red, and it’s a GMC. A lot of vehicles like this were used to transport loggers, miners, gravel pit workers, and the like. Known as “Crummies” in the vernacular. Regardless, this one has survived in what looks to be pretty good shape.
    So- is it listed on CL in Kelso OR., or Lewiston ID.? They are over 300 miles apart. Fun fact: Directly across the border from Lewiston ID is Clarkston WA. Pretty clever, huh?

    Like 1
    • angliagt angliagt Member

      That should be Kelso,WASHINGTON>

  28. Darel Miller

    those v 12’s were used in the nasa trucks in the 60’s between edwards in ca and Florida 2 to 3 mpg,,, had one in a 63 fire truck[GMC.] what a smooth engine with 700 #’s torque at 1800 rpm…

  29. GOM

    Our town had one almost identical to this, operated by the Fire Department (primarily volunteers back then) in the ’60’s as the town’s ambulance. It was a step up from the Superior-style Cadillac commercial chassis ambulance which preceded it. There was much more room in the van or “panel truck” type body, but the ride quality over our rough small town and rural roads was far poorer. I heard one of the FD guys once remark that if the patient wasn’t ailing badly when they picked him up, the punishment of the rough ride to the hospital would give him the need for medical attention. I recall them saying that the winter traction left a lot to be desired, too. All of these were obtained through government surplus programs in those days, and I guess small towns took what they could get. My guess is this may not have been their first choice.

    Like 3
  30. ctmphrs

    If it didn’t have that boat anchor v6 . I would buy it.

  31. MitchRoss Member

    Island Trees School district in Levittown, NY had one of these for years. It was a “short bus” in yellow and years later it was painted red and used by the custodial staff. I last saw it in the mid 80s, even then it was rare and I wanted it.

    Like 1
  32. MitchRoss Member

    Island Trees School district in Levittown, NY had one of these for years. It was a “short bus” in yellow and years later it was painted red and used by the custodial staff. I last saw it in the mid 80s, even then it was rare and I wanted it.

    Like 1
  33. Paul Herrell

    GREAT looking ride. I had a ‘63, Walker Co. Ga. Rescue Squad vehicle. I wish every day I hadn’t sold it! I might just look into buying this one!!!

    Like 1
  34. big mike

    My dad did a short stent as a crew driver for Missouri Pacific Railroad, back in 1965-1969, and they were using these type 1964 GMC Suburban 2500 but they were painted in the Mo Pac colors. Dad’s job was to meet train crews out in the middle of nowhere and trade the crews, then return them to a crew depot in a little town of Rivermines near or home. He would exchange different crews 6 days a week. I sometimes would get to ride along with him, I loved to see the trains, and even got to climb up in the engines and back them caboose, they were always fun!!

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