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A-Series Compacts

Dodge Forward Control vehicles were in many ways the best of their time. Among their competition were the Corvair Rampside/Loadside, Corvans, and Handi-Vans from GM; the Econoline vans and pickups from F*#d and the Micro-buses and transporters from VW. In 1964 when Dodge introduced the A-100 line of forward control vehicles, they had many advantages over the competition. One was the A-100's totally flat cargo floor, capable of handling all kinds of loads. When compared with the rear-engined competition of VW and GM, the A-100's proved to be more versatile. In `65, the advantages grew to include an optional small block V-8 engine to muscle around town with.

Image from Dodge Truck Advertisement.
The standard engine was, of course, the mighty slant-six. But with available V-8 inspiration, delivery drivers could carry more vanloads faster while others could simply haul more stuff. Dodge was the last to come on the market with their vans and compact trucks, so they were able to give the public more for their money with the right features in the tough A-100's.

A-100 vans had a payload rating of 2,110lbs and a total cargo area of 213 cubic feet. The wheelbase was 90 inches until 1967 when a 108inch model was made available, appropriately named the A-108 van. Also new was the option of having the LA-318 engine installed. This option made the A-100 van the most powerful compact van around.

Image from modified Dodge Truck Advertisement.

A-100 Pickup Postcard
For '67 the A-100 pickup was unfortunate in that it did not gain the longer wheelbase along with the vans. It did, however, aquire the possibility of having the LA-318 as an option in this year only to replace the 273ci as an option. This brought the total number of available engines on A-100's up to three; 170ci slant six, the 225 slant six, and the LA-318 V8. Rear quarter windows (shown above) were optional throughout the production of A-100's, allowing for better visibility.

Dodge L-Series Trucks
Images from 1971 Dodge Truck sales brochure.
The strange and fairly rare L-Series medium-duty Trucks were based on, as you can see, the A-100. What is so interesting is that Chrysler chose to utilize the resources they had including bodies from the A-100 compacts to create a medium-duty vehicle for 1966. The one benefit these trucks had was excellent manuverability; their wheelbase was a mega short 89 inches allowing for U-turns on streets as narrow as 28ft. For major repairs, the cab tilted up for access to either a Perkins Diesel (optional on L-600) or the 194hp 361-3 V-8 for the L-Series rigs.

Picture: Front and side views of an L-700.

Engine Usage - Medium Duty L-Series Tilt Cab Trucks (1966-1970)
Truck ModelStandardOptional Gas Optional DieselInstalled
L-600225 S6318-2 V8, 361-2 V8 Perkins 6-354`66-`70
L-700361-3 V8No optional gas Cummins V8-185 (`69-`70)`66-`70

Images submitted by Steve Dreibelbis
Above is a couple images of an L-700 which was spottted by Steve Dreibelbis at a Mopar show one year. This one has been fitted with a large hauling body atop a massive steel flatbed.

Tommy Ivo's L-700 Dragster Hauler
tommy1.jpg35.7K tommy2.jpg40.6K

Images submitted by Steve Dreibelbis
Here we find a long lost L-700 hiding in a junkyard near some far lesser vehicles. The truck looks to be fairly complete, even though these views don't tell us much.

Another White L-700
whiteL700.jpg

Did you know that there was a model kit made of the L-700? IMC models produced this kit in the sixties to honor these ultra cool trucks. The image was found on http://www.ebay.com where you can buy and sell (via auction) all kinds of auto related toys and collectibles.

L-Series Fire Truck Images
2L700fire.jpg L700fire1.jpg L700fire2.jpg L700fire3.jpg
2L700fire.jpg Submitted by Dan Summerville
Remaining Images Submitted by Steve Dreibelbis

Thanks to Chris Lublin for use of Dodge Truck sales brochures.


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