History of the 1955-1959 Chevrolet Trucks
Chevrolet’s Task Force trucks debuted in March 1955 looking very much like the company’s newly redesigned passenger cars.
Designed by Ned Jordan, these pickups featured a stylish wraparound windshield, hooded headlights, and an egg-crate grille, while the traditional pontoon-style fenders found on Advance-Design models (1947-55) were eliminated.
Like the “Hot One” on the automotive side of the fence, a Task Force half-ton pickup could also be fitted with Chevy’s historic 265-cid overhead-valve V-8. The 235-cid six remained standard. Most notable among appearance updates were quad headlights, introduced in 1958.
Also introduced in the spring of 1955 was the Cameo Carrier, Detroit’s first truly stylish pickup. Available only in Bombay Ivory with red cab accents, the ’55 Cameo featured a fiberglass-skinned cargo box that further begged car-line comparisons. Cameo production continued through 1958, with color choices appearing in 1956. Following in the Cameo’s tire tracks in 1958 was Chevy’s new Fleetside pickup, another fashion-conscious model featuring cab-wide bedsides in steel.
This generation of Chevy 3100 trucks were the first no-excuses pickups from GM, thanks to all models having either the fully pressured oil system 235-cid six or the ubiquitous small-block V-8 engine—with both coupled to an open driveshaft. Torque tubes were out, meaning owners who were seeking a taller or deeper rear axle (or any powertrain imaginable) could easily undertake an engine swap. Task Force trucks were made in much smaller numbers compared to the previous generation of “Advance Design” trucks, so fewer are available today.