Dodge WC-54 3/4- Ton Ambulance

This page last updated 03-01-02

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The ton Dodge Ambulance of World War II had a much stronger chassis then its predecessor, the ton truck. This included a heavier frame, springs and axle assemblies.

The engine, transmission and transfer case were basically the same, but the axles had a much lower gear ratio to improve off-road performance. The truck was wider and had much better ground clearance. This unit was similar to the ton in that the chassis was the same as the other trucks in the three-quarter series, as were the
1/2 tons. The bodies and equipment were nearly the same in both trucks. The WC-54 used the
longer wheelbase and different springs also.

The mansonite interior side paneling, metal roof paneling and honey-comb insulation were retained. The folding bench seats, stretcher brackets and storage compartments were in the rear. The wheel wells in the rear of the body
were much larger due to larger tires. Four litter patients could be carried. The double rear doors and folding step were used. The dome light and roof ventilator were on the top of the vehicle. The folding front bucket seats, driver’s spotlight and large water heater under the dash panel were still there.

This vehicle used combat wheels and was built without the front mounted winch. The driving controls were the same as the other -ton trucks. No partition was used between the front and rear compartments inside. The spare tire was also carried on the left outside of the body, in the recessed panel just behind the drivers door. The rear body floor was metal with linoleum covering. The rear springs also were changed for a smoother ride. Although the 3/4-ton trucks looked nearly the same has the 1/2-tons they were really completely different with interchangeable parts.

I.D. Data: The serial number is located on the identification data plate on the glove compartment door, and on the left front frame rail above the left front spring.

Engine: Dodge T214, six-cylinder, in-line, L-head, four cycle. Cast iron
block and head. Displacement: 230 cubic inches. Bore and stroke: 3.24 x 4.625 inches.
Compression ratio:6.7:1. Brake horsepower: 76 at 3200 rpm. Four main bearings. Mechanical valve lifters.

Carburetor: Zenith Model 29.

Chassis and Body: Wheelbase: 121inches. Overall length: 194.5 inches. Height 90 inches. Width: 77.75 inches. Tread center to center front: 64.75 inches. Tires 9.00 x 16 8-ply military non-directional.

Technical: Manual sliding gear transmission. Speeds: 4F/1R. Single-speed transfer case. Single dry disc clutch. Leaf spring suspension front and rear. Dodge banjo hypoid gear differentials. Gear ratio: 5.83:1. Hydraulic brakes. Manual steering. Six-volt electrical system. Top Speed: 54mph. Fuel capacity: 30 gallons. Cruising range: 240

Standard Accessories: Hand, vehicle tools; spare parts; four stretchers and related
medical equipment; fire extinguisher.

Historical: Designed and built by the Dodge Division of Chrysler Corporation
in Mound Park Michigan, from 1942-1945.

Price Range: From $1,000 to $15,000. That is to buy on today’s market

Source: Berndt, Thomas. Standard Catalog of U.S. Military Vehicles from 1940-1965
1995, Krause Publications, Iola, WI.

Typed and Supplied by: Patrick Costa

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