The first-generation of the Ford F-Series is a series of trucks that was produced by Ford in North America from 1948 to 1952. While trailing the Chevrolet Advance Design trucks by a year, the introduction of the F-Series marked the divergence of Ford car and truck design, developing a chassis intended specifically for truck use.
Across North America, Ford assembled F-Series trucks at sixteen different facilities during its production. In Canada, Lincoln-Mercury sold the F-Series under the Mercury M-Series nameplate to expand coverage in rural areas. The first generation of the F-Series is the sole generation produced entirely with “Flathead” engines (inline-6 and V8) and without an automatic transmission option.
The first-generation F-Series truck (known as the Ford Bonus-Built) was introduced in late 1947 (going on sale in 1948), replacing Ford trucks introduced in 1941. It had a flat, one-piece windshield and integrated headlamps. Options included the “See-Clear” windshield washer (operated by foot plunger), passenger-side windshield wiper & sun visor, and passenger-side taillight.
The first-generation F-Series was marketed in eight different chassis (based on their GVWR), giving them their model names; the F-1 was the lightest-capacity version with the F-8 as the highest. F-1 through F-3 pickup trucks were offered (forming the basis for panel trucks) and the bare F-3 chassis served as the basis for a parcel delivery truck. The heavier-duty F-4 chassis was produced as a light-duty commercial truck. The F-5 and F-6 were produced as medium-duty trucks in three configurations, a conventional, a COE/cab-over (as the C-Series), and a school bus chassis (as the B-Series, no bodywork rear of the firewall). The F-7 and F-8 were heavy-duty commercial trucks.