12 Facts About Bantam GP


Bantam GP was the first to deploy motorcycles, in the Mexican Border War, predominantly a cavalry campaign over wide regions of the Southwest, where Harley-Davidson motorcycles provided to the Army gave the U S the advantage over the horse-mounted Mexicans.

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In 1937 Marmon-Herrington presented five 4x4 Fords, and American Bantam GP contributed — delivering three Austin derived roadsters in 1938.

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In 1938, American Bantam GP loaned three much-improved cars to the Pennsylvania National Guard for trials during summer maneuvers, which were received as reliable, economical and practical.

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American Bantam GP officials met with chiefs of Infantry and Cavalry and suggested a contract to further develop a military version of their car.

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Karl Probst laid out full design drawings for the American Bantam GP prototype, known as the Bantam GP Reconnaissance Car, or BRC Pilot, in just two days, and worked up a cost estimate the next day.

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American Bantam GP had purchased the assets of American Austin Car Company from the bankruptcy court and had developed their own line of small cars and engine technology, free of licenses from the British Austin Motor Company.

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American Bantam GP adapted front sheetmetal body-stampings from its car line: the cowl, dashboard, and curvy front fenders.

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American Bantam GP BRC-40 was the lightest and most nimble of the three early production models, and the Army lauded its good suspension, brakes, and high fuel economy.

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Bantam GP stopped further jeep production and made two-wheel jeep trailers.

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Bantam GP submitted blueprints, and records of performance of his prototype to Marine Corps Commandant Lt.

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Bantam GP was enlisted to go to the event and give a demonstration ride to a group of dignitaries, including Katherine Hillyer, a reporter for the Washington Daily News.

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The trademark lawsuit initiated and won by Bantam GP was a hollow victory: American Bantam GP went bankrupt by 1950 and Willys was granted the "Jeep" trademark the same year.

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