This early example of the Ford side valve V8 engine and gearbox was donated to the Museum in 1976. It was prepared for the Melbourne International Motor Show display by Vivian Expositions in Clifton Hill possibly as part of the 50th Anniversary of Ford production in Australia. This is an early production truck-type engine made in Canada and was used to power a mobile crane at Duke & Orrs dry-dock in Melbourne before being acquired by Tom Frazer of Vivian Expositions for refurbishment.

The Model T Ford (1908-1927) and the Model A Ford (1928-1931) were both fitted with an in-line four cylinder engine. From 1932, The Ford Motor Company in the USA fitted a side valve, 221 cubic inch displacement, 'V' eight cylinder engine which developed 65 horsepower at 3400 revs per minute. This V8 engine had been in development since 1929 and was made with a one piece block to keep production costs down. The new V8 Ford was released in March 1932 in the USA with Ford in Australia releasing the V8 'Model B' car in August 1932. Despite some early teething problems, the side valve V8 remained in the Ford range until the 1950s. This engine was also fitted to Ford trucks and military vehicles during World War II such as the Canadian Military Pattern (CMP) truck for which various bodies and cabs were built by Ford in Geelong. The Ford side-valve V8 was fitted to locally made LP2 & LP2A Bren Gun Carriers.

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