Item:
GPA1942

Original U.S. WWII Ford GPA SEEP Serial Number 22741- Offered in Award Winning Factory Restored Condition

Regular price $225,000.00

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Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. The Ford GPA 'Seep' (Seagoing Jeep) was an amphibious version of the WWII Ford GPW Jeep. Only 12,778 were ever produced making this one of the most rare military vehicles in existence today.

This particular example was awarded the highest-level GOLD AWARD with a rating of 99.007% at the 2011 MVPA (Military Vehicle Preservation Association) National Convention in Dayton Ohio, making this the finest GPA in existence on earth.

It has been restored to 100% original factory unissued parts in exacting detail. It runs flawlessly both on land and in water and will be the focal point of any collection. The Jeep has all matching serial numbers (#22741) and was delivered to the Army on 11/4/1942. It was found, rebuilt and restored by former president of the MVPA, master restorer David Welch owner of Ramshorn Creek Restorations. It has no equal and should actually be in the Smithsonian (if they didn’t already have one, still ours is better!).

This GPA has clear title and is currently registered in the state of New Jersey as an antique. It is 100% street legal and transferable. Transportation within the continental USA is included in the purchase price. Overseas customers must contact us for a quote.

Watch it in action oh History Channel's Pawn Stars with IMA's own Alex Cranmer:

History and development of the Ford GPA:

After having commissioned Willys, Ford and Bantam to build the first 4,500 jeeps (1500 each) in March 1941, the US Motor Transport Board set up a project under the direction of the National Defense Research Committee (NDRC) to be designated "QMC-4 1/4 Ton Truck Light Amphibian".

As the war in Europe progressed bridges were frequently destroyed in front of the advancing Allies and the requirement for an amphibious version of the jeep arose. Roderick Stephens Jr. of Sparkman & Stephens Inc. yacht designers was asked to design a shape for a 2700 lb (1,200 kg) amphibious jeep, in the same vein as his design for the DUKW six-wheel-drive amphibious truck. Not surprisingly Stephens' hull design looked like a miniature version of that of the DUKW, and just like it, the 'Seep' was going to have a screw propeller, driven by a power takeoff, operating in a dedicated tunnel faired into the rear end bodywork, as well as a proper rudder.

The construction of the vehicle was developed in competition by Marmon-Herrington and Ford Motor Company. Marmon-Herrington specialised in all-wheel drive vehicles. The Marmon-Herrington prototype's hull formed an integral unibody structure, created by cutting shapes out of steel plate and welding those together, much like the hull or chassis of an armoured vehicle. The Ford entry however used a sturdy chassis and internal frame, to which more or less regular automobile type sheet-steel was welded. This construction made the GPA some 400 lb (180 kg) lighter than its competitor. Also The GPA's design was based on the Willys MB and Ford GPW standard Jeeps as much as possible. When designing and building the GPA, Ford utilized many of exactly the same parts that the Ford GPW did. The GPA had an interior similar to that of the MB/GPW jeeps, although the driver's compartment had almost twice as many control levers: 2WD/4WD, hi-range/lo-range, capstan winch (on the bows), propeller deployment and rudder control. After a direct comparison of the two company's prototypes, Ford received a contract for production starting in 1942.

Service:

In contrast to the DUKW the GPA (G=Government, P=80" wheelbase, A=Amphibious) did not perform well in the field. At some 1,600 kg (3,520 lbs) the production craft had become much heavier than the original 1,200 kg (2,640 lbs) specified in the design brief, but its volume had not been increased accordingly. As a consequence a low freeboard in the water meant that the Seep couldn't handle more than a light chop, and certainly couldn't take much cargo. The Seep's intended objective: to ferry soldiers to and from ships offshore, to trundle up the beach and continue inland, was therefore not met. It is reported that many of the Jeeps that were used in battle sank if there were any significant waves at all.

On land the vehicle was too heavy and its body too unwieldy to be popular with the soldiers. Adding insult to injury, the GPA would frequently get stuck in shallow waters, where the regular Willys MB's water fording abilities allowed it to drive straight through (Pohl, 1998). Production was already halted in March 1943 after production of only 12,778 vehicles, due to financial quibbles between Ford and the US government, as well as bad reception of the vehicle in theatre. Although some sources (Pohl; Carlin, 1989) state that less than half of that number were ever completed, serial numbers of surviving specimens suggest that the 12,7XX figure is actually correct.

In spite of participating successfully in the Sicily landings of September 1943, and performing reasonably well in inland river crossings, most GPA’s were routed to Russia under the Lend-Lease program. GPAs were also used in action North Africa, Normandy France, Holland and the South Pacific. They were also used by the British, Canadians and Free French/Fighting French.

Postwar

The Russians were sufficiently pleased with the GPA's ability to cross rivers and inland waters to keep developing it after the war. Starting out with the chassis of the GAZ-67B, prototypes were created that largely copied the Seep's layout and design, eventually leading to the GAZ 46 MAV, based on the chassis and mechanicals of the GAZ 69 4×4 jeep, to go into production as of 1952. Both the GAZ 69 and the amphibious GAZ 46 were exported to many communist countries.

By 1944 GPAs were being sold as surplus and were purchased by farmers, ranchers, adventurers and others. By the 1970s collectors had discovered them and started restoring them back to their original specifications.

Manufacturer: Ford

Production: 12,778 (1942–1943)

Assembly: United States

Class: Amphibious military utility vehicle

Layout: front-engine RWD / 4×4

Platform: Ford GP

Engine 4-cyl. side valves,

134 cu.in (2,199 cc), 60 hp

Transmission: 3-speed + 2-speed transfer case; low range engages FWD;

PTO propeller drive

Dimensions-

Wheelbase: 84 inch / 213 cm

Length: 182 inch / 462 cm

Width: 64 inch / 163 cm

Height: 69 inch / 175 cm; 45 inch reducible

Curb weight: 1,110 kg (GWV 1,610 kg)

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