Studebaker US6

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Studebaker US6
Studebaker US.jpg
Studebaker US6 model U2
Type 2 12 ton Cargo truck
Place of origin  United States
Production history
Number built 197,678 (+ 22,204 by Reo)
Specifications
Weight 10,485 lb (4,756 kg)
Length 265 in (670 cm)
Width 88 in (220 cm)
Height 88 in (220 cm)
Crew 2

Engine Hercules JXD
320 cu in (5.2 L) I6
86 hp (64 kW)
Suspension wheels, 6x4 and 6x6
Speed 45 mph (72 km/h)

The Studebaker US6 (M16A) is a class of 2 12 ton (2268kg) trucks manufactured by the Studebaker Corporation during World War II, produced in the United States from 1941–1945.

History[edit]

In 1940 the US Army set a requirement for a 6x6 truck with a 12 ft (3,658 mm) cargo area and 2 12 ton (2,268 kg) off-road payload. Studebaker and Yellow Coach (a GM brand) submitted very similar models, with many shared components, while International Harvester submitted its own unique design. All three were accepted and in production by 1941.

Production was divided between Studebaker producing for Lend-Lease, Yellow (later GMC) producing for the US Army, and International Harvester producing for the US Navy & Marines. These three primary manufacturers produced over 900,000 2 12-ton trucks in all, in both 6x4 and 6x6 axle/wheel versions, with approximately 200,000 Studebaker trucks built in thirteen variations, including dump truck and tractor models.[1]

Specifications[edit]

Engine and driveline[edit]

The US6 used a Hercules JXD engine, an I6 L-head with 86 hp (64 kW) at 2800rpm and 200 lbf·ft (271 N·m) at 1150rpm. A 4 in (102 mm) bore by 4 14 in (108 mm) stroke gave 320 cu in (5.2 L) in a conservative and reliable engine. With a compression ratio of only 6:1 it could use very low octane gasoline. This engine was also used in the M3 and later M8/M20 armored cars.

The transmission was a Warner T 93 5 speed with a direct 4th gear and overdrive 5th gear. The transfer case had high and low gears, and engaged the front axle. In 6x4 models it was blocked in high and did not drive the front axle. Both front and rear axles were a Timken split type. The transmission was also used by CCKWs, as were many transfer cases and axles.[1][2]

Body and chassis[edit]

The US6 used Studebaker’s civilian truck cab, modified for military use. Studebaker trucks were unique from other 2 1/2 ton trucks built for the war effort because vent windows were included in each door. These windows were separate from the window that rolled down into the door and could be rotated out to help with ventilation.

Studebaker designed the open military cab also used by the CCKW, but their major customer, the U.S.S.R, preferred the closed cab for their climate. While Studebaker's open cab became the US standard, the US6 returned to the closed cab after only 10,000 units.

The US6 was built on chassis with two wheelbases, 157 in (399 cm) long wheelbase (LWB) used in most models, and the 148 in (376 cm) short wheelbase (SWB), used in semi tractors and dump trucks. All models had 7.50-20” tires and dual rear tires.

6x4 models, intended for on road use only, were rated at 5 tons (4536kg), twice the 6x6’s off road rating.[1][2]

Models[edit]

The US6 series includes the following:

Model[1] Description Wheelbase
U1 Cargo with 12 ft (3.7 m) bed SWB
U2 Cargo with winch SWB
U3 Cargo with 17 ft (5.2 m) bed LWB
U4 Cargo with winch LWB
U5 750 US gal (2,800 l) tanker LWB
U6 5 ton 6x4 Semi tractor SWB
U7 5 ton 6x4 Cargo with 17 ft (5.2 m) bed LWB
U8 5 ton 6x4 cargo with winch LWB
U9 Cab and chassis (w/o winch) LWB
U10 Rear dump SWB
U11 Rear dump with winch SWB
U12 Side dump SWB
U13 Side dump with winch SWB

Combat use[edit]

A BM-13 Katyusha rocket launcher based on a Studebaker
Katyusha side view

Large numbers of Lend-Lease Studebaker trucks were sent into the Soviet Union via the Persian Corridor. The Soviets found them a good platform for "Stalin Organ" Katyusha rocket launchers, although it was not their prime use in the Soviet Union. It fulfilled many roles in the Red Army, such as pulling artillery and was renowned for its ruggedness and reliability. The truck was affectionately known as the Studer by Soviet troops.

Studebakers parked along the Persian Corridor

Studebaker US6 trucks were also used in the construction of the Burma Road as well as the Alcan Highway in North America.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Doyle, David (2003). Standard catalog of U.S. Military Vehicles. Kraus Publications. p. 122-124. ISBN 0-87349-508-X. 
  2. ^ a b Crismon, Fred W (2001). US Military Wheeled Vehicles (3 ed.). Victory WWII Pub. ISBN 0-970056-71-0. 
Department of the Army (1943). TM 9-807 War Department Technical Manual. 


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