Bedford Motor Coach

1948 Bedford OB Coach by Plaxton

Offered by Bonhams | Bicester, U.K. | December 11, 2021

Photo – Bonhams

Bedford Vehicles was founded in 1931 when General Motors shifted production of Chevrolet commercial vehicles to a Vauxhall plant. The Bedford marque was born and remained GM’s main British commercial vehicle manufacturer until 1986, at which time the heavy trucks were branded as Isuzus. Light Bedford vehicles carried on until 1991.

The OB was a single-door bus manufactured between 1939 and 1951. Most of them carried between 26 and 29 passengers, and this one is fitted with a Plaxton body. It’s got a great side profile and is powered by a 3.5-liter inline-six rated at 72 horsepower.

This one was restored between 2006 and 2008. In all, 12,766 examples of the OB were produced, with just 73 of those coming before the war. The pre-sale estimate is $51,000-$60,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $51,308.

1951 Kenworth

1951 Kenworth BC 825-C Conventional

Offered by Mecum | East Moline, Illinois | November 11, 2021

Photo – Mecum

This is a pretty awesome-looking semi. And it’s from 70 years ago, yet it doesn’t look that much different from today’s semis. It’s pretty crazy actually, not to mention the fact that it survived this long, although the restoration certainly helped.

Kirkland, Washington’s Kenworth traces its roots back to a dealership owned by the Gerlinger brothers. They started producing their own truck called the Gersix in 1914. Bankruptcy followed in 1917, and the company’s assets were acquired by E.K. Worthington and Frederick Kent. They combined their last names to form “Kenworth” in 1923.

This truck is powered by a 262-horsepower Cummins diesel. The auction catalog is light on info, but the truck looks pretty sharp and is probably still fairly usable. You can read more about it here and see more from this sale here.

Update: Sold $46,200.

1909 Stanley Mountain Wagon

1909 Stanley Model Z Mountain Wagon

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 7, 2021

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The Mountain Wagon is a popular Stanley body style. We’ve featured one before – a real one. This one is a re-creation, as most of these were essentially commercial vehicles. And as we often lament here, commercial vehicles have terrible survival rates.

It was built by a well-known steam car restorer in 1987. The story is that he would build Stanleys using remnants of existing chassis. The 30-horsepower Model Z was only built in 1909. And only as a mountain wagon. So if this is a re-creation mountain wagon, it’s also not a real Model Z. But, apparently, there are some real Stanley bits in there somewhere.

It’s pretty convincing, and unless you knew the story, you’d probably never be able to tell. This nine-passenger mountain wagon is expected to sell for between $100,000-$150,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $132,000.

Packard Box Truck

1916 Packard Model E 2.5-Ton C-Cab Box Truck

Offered by Worldwide Auctioneers | Auburn, Indiana | September 3, 2021

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

Packard was one of America’s grandest automobiles around the start of WWI. But they were also producing some pretty heavy-duty commercial vehicles at that time as well. We’ve actually featured a 3-ton variant of the Model E in the past, but this earlier 2.5-ton variant features a C-cab design.

Power is from an 8.6-liter inline-six good for about 60 horsepower. This truck was built in 1916 – the first year for shaft drive after Packard ditched its drive chains. This thing is pretty massive and sports a cool period-style corn starch livery.

Old commercial vehicles are always a treat as their survival rates are dismal at best. This one is coming out of a Packard-focused museum and will sell at no reserve. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $30,800.

1936 Albion Van

1936 Albion SPL 126 Van

Offered by H&H Auctioneers | Duxford, U.K. | April 14, 2021

Photo – H&H Auctioneers

Glasgow, Scotland-based Albion produced passenger cars for a short time until 1915 and, afterward, concentrated exclusively on commercial vehicles. This would be what the company is remembered for, and production of these continued until 1972.

We’ve featured a few Albion commercial vehicles in the past, including a truck from about this era. This delivery van carries a livery for a producer of Swiss Rolls and was apparently delivered new to this company. It was restored between 2005 and 2008 and has been fitted with overdrive, allowing it to hit about 55 mph. This makes it somewhat usable, especially if you’re a business owner looking to advertise (though it would be a shame to lose this livery). Power is from an inline-four of unknown displacement or output.

Bonhams sold this truck in 2013 for $26,000, and it now carries an estimate of $20,000-$25,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $29,469.

Crown Supercoach School Bus

1961 Crown Supercoach A779-11

Offered by Bring a Trailer Auctions | Online

Photo – Bring a Trailer Auctions

This is a school bus. That is probably obvious. But it is from 1961. I’m guessing they built a lot of these, but there are probably very few left. And based on the records shared in the auction listing, there are probably even fewer that have had this kind of money lavished upon them.

The Crown Coach Corporation produced buses (and some fire trucks) in Los Angeles between 1904 and 1991. The final few months were under the control of GE before the brand was phased out. The Supercoach was a product they introduced in 1948 and continued to iterate on until the end of the line in 1991.

This one has a replacement drivetrain. The 7.0-liter Detroit Diesel inline-six is located in the middle of the bus (underneath it). It also has a more modern five-speed automatic transmission instead of the old school five-speed manual with a two-speed rear axle. Remember your bus driver constantly shifting gears? Yeah, this one is easier to drive.

I always love an old bus, and this one is pretty great. The seats have been stripped out of the interior, which is a shame, but it’s still a winner. It was in service with a school district from new until 1999, which is insane. It makes me wonder just how old the back-up buses I rode on as a kid actually were. Click here for more info about this bus.

Update: Sold $27,250.

Mercedes O319 Minibus

1964 Mercedes-Benz O319 Minibus

Offered by Brightwells | Online | February 18, 2021

Photo – Brightwells

Mercedes-Benz has been in the commercial vehicle business for a long time. Longer than just about anyone, in fact. The L319 was a “light” commercial platform produced by the company between 1955 and 1968. It was their first such vehicle, slotting in between a small delivery van and a run-of-the-mill truck.

They were available in a variety of body styles, including vans, flatbed trucks, and more. A minibus variant called the O319 was also available. This would’ve originally had a small, 55-horsepower diesel engine in it, but now it has a replacement 2.0-liter diesel inline-four.

This tiny bus has apparently been in a private Welsh collection for years, being primarily used as a wedding party bus (though the interior still has very bus-like rows of seating). It is expected to sell for between $41,000-$48,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Bid to $34,192… Brightwells doesn’t make it easy to tell if a car sold or not. This one missed its estimate so I’m not sure.

Nelson-LeMoon

1928 Nelson-LeMoon Stake Truck

Offered by Mecum | East Moline, Illinois | March 25, 2021

Photo – Mecum

A.R. LeMoon sold his first truck in 1910, and in 1913, the Nelson & LeMoon company of Chicago started selling vehicles under the Nelson-LeMoon name, which would last through 1927. At that time, Nelson was dropped again, and production wrapped up in 1939 (when Mr. LeMoon shifted to becoming a dealer for Federal trucks). In 29 years, the company produced approximately 3,000 trucks. Not a lot. And many of them remained in the greater Chicago area.

This truck is powered by a Waukesha inline-six and was purchased by the current owner in 1979. It was essentially a derelict at that time, but has been restored. It must be one of the nicest examples in existence. It’s now a stake bed truck, and the cab forward is pretty much how it would’ve looked when new.

It’s an interesting, all-American pre-war heavy commercial vehicle. And it’s from a marque most people have never heard of, let alone seen. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $20,350.

Leyland Tiger PS1

1947 Leyland Tiger PS1

Offered by H&H Classics | Online | November 25, 2020

Photo – H&H Classics

Well, last week we featured a lot of commercial vehicles. I said that we’d pick it up again on Monday. It’s now Tuesday, but here we are. The Tiger is a model of bus produced by Leyland Motors between 1927 and 1968, and again from 1981 through 1992. They looked different over the years, and this front-engined Tiger is of the post-war PS variety.

It is said to be one of two known survivors with coachwork by Barnaby (of four built). It was part of a private bus line for its commercial career, and it is powered by a 7.4-liter diesel inline-six.

This bus was restored in the 2000s, and it was restored to “bus-spec” and not converted into an RV like so many old buses have been. I’m a big fan of classic busses, and despite this one being overseas, I dig it a lot. It carries a pre-sale estimate of $26,000-$31,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

1921 International

1921 International 101 Stake Bed

Offered by Mecum | Davenport, Iowa | November 19-21, 2020

Photo – Mecum

Somehow this week became “classic commercial vehicle week.” Not sure how that happened. But I do know that it will continue at least through Monday. This is a pretty interesting one. International Harvester was founded in 1902 when McCormick and Deering merged. Agricultural equipment was first, followed by passenger vehicles and heavy trucks.

The International brand is still a leader in the truck business. This was one of their early revolutionary designs. Apparently, the 101 was the first truck that could haul more than its own weight. It’s insane that this took until 1921 to accomplish.

Mecum states that only 27 examples of the 101 were built. They look like Renaults from the front (but many trucks of the era did, and for good reason: it was to protect the radiator by placing it behind the engine so angry Teamsters carriage drivers couldn’t damage the front-mounted radiator). It’s a downright frightening machine. Huge, heavy, and with badass wheels. Power is from a 4.6-liter inline-four good for 29 horsepower. Top speed is 14 mph. I imagine this was used to move big loads small distances. What a beast. Find out more here and see more from Mecum here.

Update: Sold $33,000.