Rare Truck Find: 1936 Terraplane Cab Pickup

Disclosure: This site may receive compensation from some link clicks and purchases.

Here is a rare and unique opportunity to own a very cool pickup truck! Stylish and on par with the Studebaker Coupe Express from the ’30s, this Terraplane is an awesome sight to see with its suicide doors. Appearing to be complete and with some hope of a good engine, this truck would be a magnificent pickup project. With several days remaining in the auction, this Terraplane is currently bid up to $10,200. Be sure to check this one out here on eBay out of Meridian, Idaho.

The Power Dome Inline 6 engine holds some promise as it was found full of very good looking oil. The seller tried to get it running but was not successful with getting the ignition functional. I am assuming the engine turns over freely which is great, but still, some further work is needed to get the engine revived. Another neat feature of this engine is that it is equipped with a steam heater. I am sure that was a much-appreciated feature back in the day. As an added bonus, the seller purchased new tires, a battery, new spark plugs, a new clutch, and keys for this truck.

The interior is there but is a bit rough. The bench, the door panels, and the headliner all need work. I will admit that the dash is quite pleasing to look at with its symmetrical layout. A solid cleaning and polishing would make the interior manageable and reupholstering the door panels and bench seat would help as well. I must admit this truck looks awesome and comfy with its lower than the usual truck stance, and its suicide doors to ease into the cab with.

Little paint remains on this truck, but the style is still very evident on this machine. As a whole, this does not seem to have much rot, but the lower portion of the fenders have been cut off. Also, there is an arch of rot on the interior edge of the bed walls. There is a lot to work with here, and there have to be so few of these trucks left in the world. Restoration would be ideal, but a semi preservation effort would also work as long as this truck was driven and seen by others who would appreciate such a rare machine. Would you take on reviving this rare and beautiful pickup?

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. NotSure

    This is past my skill set. But what a stylish truck! I do hope that the right woman/man comes along to give this Terraplane new life! It deserves that if only to save the suicide doors and that really terrific grill!!

    Like 5
    • NotSure

      Further review of condition and it appears that both doors may have had a business name applied to each? Upper center of each exterior panel is missing paint that could indicate this. Plus that roof line is very nice as it slopes up to the back of the cab!

      Like 0
  2. HoA Howard AMember

    I have to bring out the big guns here, geomechs,,what in ‘tarnation is a steam heater??? I don’t see any evidence of any boiler in the cab, but judging by the heater hose coming off the water pump, I assume it’s a regional dialect for,,a heater.
    Fun aside, it’s great to see this stuff coming out of the woodwork, and I never have to leave the kitchen table. Not sure, I think Hudson was 1st with a car based pickup. 30’s must have been a neat time, so many cool designs. This, I believe fell flat with interest for the same reasons 25 years later, people usually wanted a car or a truck, but not both. As the supply surely must be dwindling on these, I only hope someone doesn’t butcher it into a resto-mod.

    Like 9
    • HoA Howard AMember

      Btw, I’ve seen engines that sit for a long time and will have clean oil like that. Over the years the crud settles, and there’s probably a big glop of it in the oil pan.

      Like 13
      • Kevin H

        Yep, if it sits long enough it cleans itself.

        Like 2
    • Andy

      Ford made plenty of Model T and A pickups–my dad’s first vehicle was an A. I think it was really only after about 1932 that car and truck lines really diverged much. But you could call the Hudson & Terraplane pickups the El Caminos of the ’30s and ’40s, and probably the prettiest pickups ever.

      Like 8
      • Bigblocksrock396

        Just about anything with suicide doors is cool! This p/u included.

        Like 2
    • Peter

      Can someone explain what is a steam heater? I too would like to know

      Like 3
  3. PeteMember

    It bothers me that there are no frame photos. It was pretty deep in the grass and weeds in the first photos. I love this body of a pickup otherwise….

    The oil pan could be flushed without too much difficulty before running it.

    Like 2
  4. Mountainwoodie

    I’d love to have a Hudson or a Terraplane . I think they are so interesting. I’m amazed that someone let this deteriorate to this extent. Where are you going to get another set of rear fenders? I guess you could scab in another piece though……….I’d love to know the backstory from the seller. The bid price as it stands testifies to this trucks’ uniqueness.
    I think I have an unnatural attraction to Rancheros, El Caminos and Hudson and Terraplane “Express’I better seek professional help. :)

    Like 5
  5. Bob

    I think those are the most beautiful pickups ever built! Unfortunately I probably can’t afford one let alone afford a restoration or even a renovation! I was at an auction in Ohio a couple years ago that had 2 of those but went way out of my price range! Oh well, nice to see! I’ll keep rolling my 40 coup only because I was lucky enough to buy it 13 years ago at a realistic price! I’m 44 years old and been building cars since I was 4! It’s just a hobbie but realistically this hobbie is outrageously priced these days ! I’m pretty sure the future is doomed unless you have big $$$$$! To bad for any dreamer youngster!

    Like 3
  6. SmokeyMember

    I was a concours judge last year in Northern California. There was an exact duplicate of this Hudson in a class I got to judge. It was spectacular ! I was judging the exteriors that day and only deducted one point total. It won its class hands down and was voted the crowd favorite. It was finished in a deep maroon with fine subtle pin striping. It had a tobacco drown leather interior. The bed was lined in walnut, semi gloss finish. The owner was displaying before and during restoration photos. It was in much worse condition than this car.

    Like 6
  7. Lance Nord

    This pickup is on my wish list. It’s the only “historic” pickup I would be interested in owning. I only have two issues to overcome before I buy one; time and money. I hope it goes to a good home.

    Like 2
  8. luke arnott

    Why buy whitewall tyres for it???

    Like 1
  9. John

    Not reassuring that the original owner has three years to reclaim it!

    Like 2
  10. Pete Phillips

    This one is off the meter on the “cool factor”! The only one that might be close or as good is the late 1930s Studebaker Coupe Express.

    Like 2
    • Franco

      That grille,and the rake in the grille and roof. Might be just beyond leaving the paint alone. Refreshing that it’s not another Ford,Chevy or Dodge.

      Like 0
  11. Kevin in Iowa

    3 decades ago I was informed of a farm building site that was to be bulldozed and made into tillable land. The owner said there was an old pickup that I could have. Excited, I went hoping for a decent truck. A ’37 Hudson Terraplane and it was horrible! Lying on it’s side and smashed I took the one and only good part I could find, the hood ornament. It’s here somewhere. In another area among the trees I found a Franklin rear axle with it’s aluminum housing and remnants of the wood spoked wheels. It’s here but I know where, kinda hard to lose track of that.

    Like 2
  12. MorleyMember

    Too expensive to rat rod , let some restore sink a ton of money into it and it still won,t be worth much.

    Like 0
    • HoA Howard AMember

      You sure about that? Restored examples can go for $40,000, if you can even find one. Hemmings has none, which tells you something.

      Like 1
      • Aribert

        Am I the only one who sees the styling of the back of the roof with the small curvature as looking hacked? To me this curvature/radius doesn’t match the rest of the body styling. Yes, I understand Hudson was using the same roof panel from a much longer pass vehicle and trimming it short.

        Like 0
  13. leiniedude leiniedudeMember

    Well, a sniper came in and really threw down the gauntlet, it’s worth this much to someone Morley. Ended: Mar 02, 2019 , 9:14PM
    Winning bid:US $20,000.00
    [ 11 bids ]

    Like 0

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks.

Become a member to add images to your comments.


Get new comment updates via email. Or subscribe without commenting.

Barn Finds