The Burma Jeep: 1945 Ford GTB

1945 Ford GTB

These were known as the “Burma Jeep” and were used by the Navy and Marine Corps in the Pacific in World War ll, as well as the Korean War. This one is listed on craigslist near Sacramento, California for $3,800. There’s no word on condition, except to say it’s good. It does look solid and complete, but it’s definitely going to need a lot of work.

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These were low profile, short and very maneuverable trucks with a turning radius of only 32 feet and are much more compact than other 1 ½ ton trucks. The engine is pushed back into the cab to give it a shorter wheelbase. It’s powered by a flathead 6 cylinder Ford engine with 90 horsepower, a 4 speed transmission and a 2 speed transfer case. It will haul 3,000 pounds and has great off road capabilities. The patina is interesting and there’s no daylight showing through the body.I can imagine lots of uses for this, mostly off-road on ranches and farms. What an interesting vehicle and an amazing survivor!

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Comments

  1. randy

    I’d call it “The King of the Road”! It would come in handy in the woods carrying 2 tons of firewood. I tend to overload my trucks.

  2. Scotty G

    Now that is cool! Although, “paint color: orange”? Is that orange as in rust?
    Yet another fun winter restoration project for someone, nice find.

  3. JW

    This thing put back in workable condition would work real well on a farm. I would have to build a cab for it but not destroying it’s historical value living in the Midwest.

  4. Howard A Member

    Just when I think I’ve seen every vehicle that came from WW2, another pops up. Apparently, this was quite the workhorse in the Pacific ( and later Korea) Images show this truck was fitted with every kind of equipment body, but seemed to be used mostly as a bomb transport. Man, that is one mambo winch. ( probably could pull itself off the frame) Some say it helped win the war. I’m sure many are at the bottom of the Pacific, as someone’s dad I know, was on a ship coming home when the war ended, and they pushed everything overboard. The fact this one remains, is pretty rare. Cool truck. Clearly, not for highway use ( top speed 45 @ 9mpg), but great hobby farm truck. ( here’s a pretty dangerous job during the war, wow)
    http://olive-drab.com/images/id_gtb_700_04.jpg

    • randy

      The term “suicide jockey” comes to mind.

  5. z1rider

    This is an engine pic for another Burma Jeep. Note the distributor location. Not the same as the Ford passenger car six cylinder engine. I wonder about parts availability.

  6. Joe Howell

    Really cool truck. I used to have a 2 1/2 ton M58 Eager Beaver, it was tough but not a good woods truck. This would be one bad firewood hauler :)

  7. stan cole

    Dad had one on our farm. While I was in the Navy in the 60’s he cut it up for scrap iron. It was a fun vehicle to drive in the hills. Stan

  8. Nate Koogle

    i found a “Berma Jeep” GTB wrecker today. It’s 1 of only 50 made. Such a neat rig. My friend just pulled it out of the brush here in the desert. Looks to have ran when it was parked.

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