Hemmings has a good writeup on the Scout SSV, which was to be International’s successor to the Scout II. From what it sounds like, they were aiming for the fences at a time when they could only afford to polish what they had.

Light trucks, on the other hand, were becoming more of a bother to the company. It discontinued its Travelalls and pickups in 1975 in response to the 1973 oil crisis, had trouble meeting the Environmental Protection Agency’s fuel economy standards set to take effect in 1979, and faced a second oil crisis that year.

I’ve always thought the SSV was a hideously ugly design that looked more like a Tonka truck than a production vehicle; even if they’d been able to pull this out of their hat, I wonder how many of them they would have sold—it reminds me of AMC’s attempts to shake things up with the Pacer, and later the Matador. And we all know how that went.

There’s a presentation at the ACD Museum in Fort Wayne about this subject on Saturday, which I’d love to be able to listen in on—but it doesn’t look like they’ve accounted for, uh, COVID. It’s a shame, because I’d definitely log in to a ZOOM call if I could.

Date posted: October 13, 2020 | Filed under History | 2 Comments »

2 Responses to Hemmings on the SSV

  1. Neal in Boston says:

    I saw and appreciated that article too.
    Like you, I have not been a fan of that proposed design, although I think the idea of composite bodies is a good one given how difficult rust can be.
    Wish that IH could have held onto the Light Line, and/or that someone would revive the Scout.

    Found the the following anecdote in the comments to be alarming and informative. The crash test videos of original Scouts are scary enough without worrying about decapitation!

    “Jason Herring a day ago
    …As to the story reference, “Trey” (he was Andrew Charles Stewart III) said that he and his group saw the film of the crash tests. The engine hood deflected to half of its length…THEN SPRUNG BACK to its original shape and length, DECAPITATING both of the front seat crash test dummies!! The subsequent engineering order was to make the hood “‘weaker”. I guess making the hood hinges and or front latch weaker was out of the question.”

    Yikes. Engineering by trial and error.

    Scout on!
    How are your other projects coming?

  2. bill says:

    Yeah, the crash test videos for Internationals are….alarming. There’s one for the Scout II where they roll it sideways and the whole thing just crumbles. What’s more frightening is that the one they tested was a dead ringer for my first Scout—same year, color, and trim level.

    Other projects are slower going; I’ve been sidelined with work and life the last month or so, so the only progress has been with paint removal and spare parts. And I haven’t heard a peep from neighbor’s Dad about painting schedule, so I’m holding off on blasting the actual truck until I get a firm commitment.

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