M-37 Dodge Truck Family

The 3/4 ton rated M-37 family of trucks were built by Dodge as the first M-series 3/4 ton truck, the successor to the G-502 WC 3/4 ton family of trucks used in WW II and Korea. The M37 is a custom military design developed starting in 1948 and produced is several groups and models from 1950 to 1968. The M37 series was used by all the U.S. services from the early 1950s through the 1980s and exported widely around the world. Although a little sluggish, this is one of the toughest and most reliable trucks ever built.

1953 M37 owned by Madison Hughes, CAF Highland Lakes Squadron Air Show, Burnet, TX, 12 April 2008.  Photo courtesy Bob Pettit
1953 M37 owned by Madison Hughes, CAF Highland Lakes Squadron Air Show, Burnet, TX, 12 April 2008. Photo courtesy Bob Pettit.

Today in WW II: 23 Oct 1941 Romanian troops slaughter over 20,000 Jews in the Odessa area, in reprisal for bomb set by Soviets. More 
23 Oct 1942 2nd Battle of El Alamein, Egypt begins; British successfully driving the German Afrika Korps out of Egypt [23 Oct-4 Nov].
23 Oct 1944 Naval Battle of Leyte Gulf begins in the Philippines, protecting US 6th Army Leyte beachheads from sea based attack [23-26 Oct].
23 Oct 1944 Palawan Island, Japanese armada detected on route to Leyte; American submarines sink two Japanese cruisers.
Visit the Olive-Drab.com World War II Timeline for day-by-day events 1939-1945! See also WW2 Books.

M37 Dodge 3/4 ton 4x4 Truck Family (G-741)

M37 Dodge prototypes were delivered to the Army early in 1950, and the first production vehicles in December that year. The Chrysler/Dodge internal designation was T245 which also identifies the engine. During 1951 through 1954 vehicles of the M37 series were produced and delivered monthly, totalling over 63,000 by mid-1954. By 1957, cumulative changes to the design resulted in the designation M37B1 (and T245A) for deliveries starting in 1958. From 1958 through 1968, about 47,600 M37B1 series vehicles were produced. In addition, a Canadian version (M37CDN) was produced from 1951-1955, an additional 4500+ vehicles.

The M-37 was succeeded by trucks derived from commercial vehicles, including the Kaiser M-715 and Dodge M-880. Eventually almost all of the U.S. military light duty trucks were replaced by the HMMWV.

The M-37 family trucks were produced with and without a winch, and with multiple body styles including:

There were other prototypes and limited production models in small numbers, such as:

Doyle's Standard Catalog of U.S. Military Vehicles exhibits these and other M37 based models. Detailed production information is covered by Zentmyer (see below).

Many M-37s still survive and are on the road as civilians, restored, or still in military service in odd corners of the globe. A restored M37 owned by Terry Fralick, winner of first place in the Restored Class at the Mobile Alabama MVPA National Convention in 2004, was for sale in February 2014, asking $25,000.

Find additional photos and hi-res versions of Terry Fralick's M37 at the Olive-Drab Military Mashup.

Terry Fralick can be reached by email at the link. More photos here.

Information Sources for the Dodge M-37 Truck Family

You can find an extensive list of Technical Manuals, Technical Bulletins, MWOs and other documentation for the Dodge M-37 Truck Family on the linked page. A table of dimensions and specifications is on the same page.

In addition to the technical manuals, an important source for detailed information on the history of the M37 is the volume TM 9-1840C M37 Series Production Story by John H. Zentmyer, July 1987. This little manual, in the format of a military TM, is available from Adirondack Dodge Parts or Boyce Equipment. Doyle's Standard Catalog of U.S. Military Vehicles has an excellent M37 section with many photos.

For a very complete and extensive write-up on the restoration of an M-37, including solving a lot of problems and dealing with real-world issues, take a look at this M37 page.