We do a lot of work on Ambulances for sales purposes here at Global Emergency Vehicles, but recently we picked up this 1969 Ford Econoline 300 Ambulance as a project for our operation. It is very much a work in progress at this point, but overall it is in nice shape. We hope to one day have it as a show vehicle that will represent our business at EMS events and maybe even a few car shows.
The second generation Ford Econoline is actually very special in Ambulance history, in many ways marking the birth of the Type II Ambulance that we know today. For the 1969 model year Ford brought out the new Econoline Van with some major changes to the previous generation. Most notably it moved the engine from the middle, behind the front seats, up to the front of the vehicle. They also upped the engines that were available by adding the 300 CID I6 and the much-loved 302 CID Windsor V8 to the mix. Ours, thankfully, has the mighty 302 under its hood.
The ’69 Econoline also represents the era where Ambulances were moving away from car platforms and into truck and van platforms. The emphasis was on having enough room to treat a patient while en-route to the hospital, and more space as equipment became needed over the years. All of the added weight became difficult for a car chassis to handle, so a move to something bigger and stronger was needed. The new Ford Econoline proved to be a nice package for the time, and the idea of an Ambulance van conversion was seeded.
We are proud to have this Ford 300 Econoline among our fleet of emergency vehicles. It provides a sense of context for the modern Ambulances we provide to our clients every day. We have high hopes for what this project could become for us, and we are looking for ideas on what direction to go with it. Some of us want to keep it original, and some of us want to trick it out. Let us know your thoughts in the comments, and enjoy the rest of the photos below!