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Econoline

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1960 Ford Econoline Size

 

Econoline Parts

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The first generation of the Ford Econoline made its debut on September 21, 1960. Introduced for the 1961 model year as a cargo van, pickup truck, and a passenger van. the Econoline began development based on design sketches that were dated 1957. The Econoline replaced the van version of the Ford F-Series that was cancelled.

 

While introduced alongside the Chevrolet Corvair van for 1961, the Ford Econoline established many design precedents adopted by successive designs of American vans, including the Chevrolet Van and Dodge A100. While remaining a forward-control vehicle, Ford adopted a mid-engine configuration. As the engine was placed between the front seats instead of behind the rear axle as on the Corvair, a larger rear door and flat load floor was created, allowing for additional load capacity.

 

As the result of a lengthy United Auto Workers strike in 1967, the launch of the second-generation Econoline van was delayed almost four months until January 1968. Instead of calling it a 1968 or 1968.5 model, Ford decided to call it the 1969 model. Shedding its Falcon roots, the second-generation Econoline became a heavier-duty vehicle, sharing many of its underpinnings with the F-series full-size pickups.

 

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For 1975, the Econoline/Club Wagon were given a complete redesign. Based on an all-new chassis, Ford became the first American manufacturer to adapt body-on-frame construction to a full-size van.

 

 

The new-generation Econoline would become common not only in its own right, but as the basis for other vehicles. With a full frame, the Econoline became popular as a cutaway van chassis; the design served as a basis for many ambulances, and various types of trucks and buses. The shared drivetrain with the F-Series marked the beginning of aftermarket four-wheel drive conversions. During the 1970s, the Econoline became popular as a basis for van conversions. Using the sparsely-equipped Econoline cargo van as a basis, a luxurious interior was fitted, along with extensive customization of the exterior.

 

For the 1992 model year, Ford introduced the fourth generation of the Econoline/Club Wagon. While the third-generation chassis was largely carried over, the body and interior underwent a complete redesign. As with the smaller Ford Aerostar, the fourth-generation model line was offered two body lengths on a common wheelbase.

 

 

The fourth-generation Econoline/Club Wagon underwent several revisions during its production. For 1999, to adopt a nomenclature closer in line to that of Ford full-size trucks, the Econoline was renamed the E-Series.

 

 

In June 2014, production of E-Series passenger and cargo vans was discontinued as sales of the Ford Transit began in North America. From 2015 onward, the E-Series has remained in production solely for commercial markets in cutaway-cab and stripped chassis configurations. For the 2021 model year, the E-Series receives mechanical and functional updates to improve performance of second-party equipment; it remains in production solely as a commercial vehicle.