International Harvester Scout

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1961 International Scout 80 with half cab roof

The International Scout is an off-road vehicle which was made by International Harvester from 1961 to 1980. It was one of the earlier SUVs. The Scout was created as a competitor to the Jeep. Remarkably, the Scout went from a basic idea to production in only two years.[1] Like the Jeep it had square utilitarian styling but had cleaner lines.[2] It initially featured a fold-down windshield. The Scout and second generation Scout II were produced in Fort Wayne, Indiana as two-door trucks. They had the options of a half cab pickup or removable hard or soft top.

Background[change | change source]

International Harvester began building trucks and pickups and later in 1907. In 1953 it added a truck-based people carrier, the Travelall. In the late 1950s it began to design a competitor for the two-door Jeep CJ 4x4. The 1961 model year Scout 80 made its debut in late 1960. Scouts began selling so well against Jeep, Ford jumped in with the Bronco and Chevrolet came out with the Blazer.[3]

Production[change | change source]

A concept for its replacement was started in 1964. It was approved for production in mid 1965. The Scout II was introduced in 1971. The basic sheet metal remained the unchanged until production stopped on October 21, 1980. During the 20 year period (1960–1980) 532,674 Scouts were produced. The Scout, introduced as a commercial utility vehicle in 1960, set the stage for future 4-wheel drive recreational vehicles of the '70s, '80s, and '90s.

Scout models
1963 International Scout 80
 
1966 International Scout 800
 
1973 International Scout
 
1979 International Scout
 
Scout Traveler
 

Scout models and variants[change | change source]

Scout models include the:

  • Scout 80 (1960–1965): The original
  • Scout 800 (1966–1971): Same overall design as original with upgrades (electric wipers, newer engines etc.)
  • Scout 810 (1971): Some early Scout II's contain Scout 810 badging on the glove box.
  • Scout II (1971–1980): The later standard production model with a removable soft or hardtop (100-inch wheelbase).
  • Scout II Terra (1976–1980): The light pickup truck version (118-inch wheelbase).
  • Scout II Traveler (1976–1980): This version had a removable fiberglass hardtop, optional third row of seats (118 in wheelbase).
  • Super Scout II (1977–1979): This model had removable fabric doors, a rollbar, and softtop. The soft-top model was tagged the "SSII" by IH marketing. Eventually the "SS" letters were assumed to stand for "Super Scout", the name this model is called today.

References[change | change source]

  1. Jim Walczak. "Little Known Facts About The International Harvester Scout - IH Scout History". About.com. Retrieved 25 May 2015.
  2. Steve Statham, Jeep Color History (Osceola, WI: MBI Publishing Co., 1999), p. 88
  3. Michael Lamm, 'Sitting in Looking out, you'd hardly guess you were driving an off-road vehicle. It's another of those two-car cars', Popular Mechanics, Vol. 136, No. 5 (November 1971), pp. 100–102