1937 Ford Specsby James Jordan
Ford redesigned for the 1937 car year, and the model was introduced with great fanfare as Ford sought to regain the lead in car manufacturing. It was the first year for headlights inside the front fenders, and the front grille had bars leading to a center bar. Ford also added a station wagon to its lineup; standard and deluxe versions were offered to all its models.
The 1937 Ford continued to use the V-8 Flathead engine that had been introduced in 1934, and it was still the best engine that was mass produced. The engine came in 136-cubic inches or 221-cubic inches, and was available across the board in most models; it was also used in the Ford half-ton pickup truck. The 221 put out 85 horsepower while the 136 had 60 horsepower. Both engines ran cars that had 112-inch wheel bases. The larger engine was much more popular and many more of them were installed. A standard three-speed transmission was used on all Fords of 1937, and standard tires were 5.5 X 16 inch. Ford changed its brakes to a steel cable system that was effective, but resisted using popular hydraulic brakes that other car makers used.
The 1937 Ford had a 14- or 16-gallon gas tank. The engines -- regardless of size -- held four qts. of oil and 15 qts. of coolant. The water pump could push through 45 gallons of water per minute, and the pump's location was changed to make water flow easier. Costs ranged from $529 for the coupe with the smaller engine to $758 for the Fordor Touring Sedan deluxe package with the larger engine. The Fordor Sedan was the most popular vehicle Ford made with nearly half a million of them being produced. The car weighed 2,696 lbs. The Coupe weighed 2,383. The car's overall length was reduced from the 1,936 length of 182.75 inches to 179.5 inches. All of the Fords were the same length and build on the same chassis.
The Ford lineup included a three-passenger coupe, Tudor, Fordor, Cabriolet, Sedan Phaeton and Roadster. Standard and deluxe packages were available on all these models. The deluxe package had dual taillights, wood window moldings and dashboard, Chrome plated grille, rear armrests, lock glove compartment door and clock. A convertible was available on several models, and station wagons with wood sides came from the sedans. Additionally, a heater, radio, radio antenna, cigar lighter and seat covers were available as optional equipment.
James Jordan has been a writer and photographer since 1980. He has worked for newspapers in Arkansas, Tennessee, South Carolina and Kansas, winning state press association awards for writing, photography and page design. In 1995 he received his master's in Christian education and completed two years of Ancient Greek at the graduate level. Jordan holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism.