GMC: Hauling for the General in Small Scale

Posted by: DaveWeber in Member Blogs

The General Motors Truck Company of Pontiac, Michigan; now a Division of General Motors Corporation, (GM) was established in 1911 and has been in continuous operation to the present. GMC developed out of the merger and acquisition by W C Durant, the founder of General Motors. These former manufacturers were the Rapid Truck Company, originally from  Detroit Michigan (1904-1912) and the Reliance Motor Truck Company; (formerly the Reliance Motor Car Company) of Owosso Michigan (1906- 1911).


The Rapid Trucks concentrated on production of one to two ton size capacities, while the Reliance vehicles made larger trucks up to a 5 ton capacity in size. Thus, it is evident that GMC  Trucks had a well established beginning! In addition, the Chevrolet Division of GM also introduced a sister truck line in 1918. During the continued coexistence of these 2 brands, many of these trucks were very similar in appearance ; except for the use of a somewhat differently styled engine grilles over the years. Near the end of the last Centennial, the large production truck licensing was sold to White Trucks; (formerly the White Sewing Machine Company) since acquired by Volvo of Sweden.. The trucks were branded as WhiteGMC for a few years after the acquisition.

With the “General” having disposed of the “big trucks”, GMC continued successfully in production. As noted above the main styling difference consisted of the differently designed grilles. The GMC presented a more “brutish” appearance. Even the smaller sedan pickup Chevrolet El Camino was joined by a sister product; the GMC Sprint. The Sprint is not well known and a much lesser amount of this latter brand were produced .

No doubt, there must have been some strong marketing competition, yet both brands have survived the recent major downsizing of GM!  Some observers suspected one of these sister brands might have been discontinued; but apparently the consumer clientele differs greatly to allow the continued production of both brands.

Models representative of the GMC in small scale (1:64 / 3 inch) size are and have been available over the years. We have attempted to identify alphabetically all known model/ toy manufacturers that we know about. But the following list is not guaranteed to be complete. Thus, we welcome any additions or corrections.

  • Boley Topkick Tow Truck
  • Buby Vandura
  • Code 3    Suburban
  • Columbia Telecomm  Yukon Denali
  • Ertl 1997 (?)  3500 Dually
  • Hartoy K15 Sierra Grande,  Transformers
  • Hot Wheels  1950
  • Johnny Lightning  1991 Syclone ,  1992 Typhoon
  • Maisto     Savanna Van
  • Majorette   Jimmy SUV 
  • Matchbox 1957 Stepside Pickup,  Savanna School Bus, Light Duty Tow Truck, RWR- Bucket Truck, Terradyne Concept P/up   
  • Muscle Machines    Sierra extended Cab
  • Racing Champions   Terracross Concept
  • Road Champs  1980
  • Shinsei   Semi Tractor/ Trailer  
  • Yat Ming 1950 

By  Dave Weber and Zach Morecraft
Pictures by Zach Morecraft

Tags: Tales of Toy Cars, Vehicles

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