Bantam Reconnaissance Car

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This BRC-40 is on exhibit at the Pennsylvania Military Museum in Boalsburg, PA
From the Museum Placard:
"Produced by American Bantam Car Company of Butler, Pennsylvania, the Bantam Reconnaissance Car (BRC-40) was the predecessor to the famous Ford and Willy's "jeep" of WWII. This one was sent to the U.S. Army in 1940 for testing.

The BRC-40 was the second model of "jeep" produced by Bantam. It was an improvement of the pilot model sent to the U.S. Army for testing in 1940. Bantam produced 2,675 BRC-40's in 1941 before the contract for the "jeep" was awarded to Ford Motors and Willy's Overland for mass production.

Most BRC-40's were sent to Great Britain and Russia through the Lend Lease program. The Russians copied the BRC-40 and called their version the GAZ-67.

In 1938 the Pennsylvania National Guard's 112th infantry Regiment tested 2 Bantam Roadsters during field maneuvers. This unofficial test was the first time a military unit used a Bantam, and its results led to the development of the "Jeep".

Additional Information:
The Bantam BRC-40 was produced from March 1941 to through mid-December 1941. Bantam however was unable to meet the demand for production of the much needed vehicles. With Bantam unable to increase their production lines due to financial ability to produce them on the scale needed by the War Department, they then turned to Ford and Willy's to build their own versions, even going so far as to forward the Bantam Blueprints to them claiming the government owned the design. After Willy's started production of their version, the Bantam BRC-40 was no longer required by the U.S. Army as it was "non-standard".

Items of note on the BRC-40:
Grille has round bars instead of flat slats
Single windshield wiper on bottom
Parking brake on the left beside pedals
No gas pedal - Floor mounted starter button and a hand throttle in dash to set speed

Website of Interest
The Pennsylvania Military Museum

Photography Note:
This museum exhibit was in a three sided enclosure with dim lighting, so brightness was slightly enhanced for better photos.
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About the Author

About Delbert (Delbert)

I'm 51. I've been model building since Dec 2001 and I build everything from wingy things to ground hugger's. esp WWII era. also built a car or two. Some people think my stuff isn't too bad.


How fitting. I was thinking about starting the Mini Art kit soon. Good pics.
NOV 04, 2015 - 06:24 PM
Just don't think you're going to be able to use the figures that come with the kit. They don't fit the seats AT ALL. (...just noticing I might be 7 months late on the warning)
MAY 27, 2016 - 06:40 AM