Shown is the M1A1 variant,
standardised in March 1944, which featured an open cap
and a typical military front end. Whether it was made by
Kenworth (Model 573) or Ward LaFrance (Model 1000, series
5) is not easy to determine as differences in appearance
were minimal. It is probably a Ward LaFrance due to the
design of the whiffletree. The design of the front bumper
made it possible to break down trees and other obstacles.
Note the addition of manually operated outrigger jacks to
help stabilising the truck under operating conditions.
Spare wheels were mounted on both sides of the main mast
for easy access.
Welding and cutting equipment was carried, with 3 big gas
bottles, behind the cab and there was a considerable
amount of tools and equipment in the lockers.
The Gar Wood US6A fully powered main crane had a 6 ton
capacity instead of the 5 ton capacity of the M1. Front
winch primarily intended for self recovery was a Gar Wood
5M713K with a 9 ton capacity and rear winch a Gar Wood
3U615 with 21 ton capacity.
Bows and tarpaulins for camouflage were furnished. These
gave the wrecker the look of cargo truck, and made it a
less conspicuous target from the air.
With the introduction of the M62 in the early 1950´s ,
the M1A1 were downgraded to "limited standard".
Some 3.735 were produced from 1943 to 1945.