December 6th, 2007

Schlock Captain Quidnunc

Cab over Pete with a reefer on...

This morning, while driving to work, I had C.W. McCall's "Convoy" song going through my head (still is). I started thinking about the "cab over Pete" lyric (referring to a Peterbilt make of truck with its cab over the engine) and I noticed that there were not many trucks on the road built according to the "cab over engine" design. I decided to count them. From about the Dublin Grade all the way to Alameda I noticed that there were only about a dozen and a half trucks which were cab over engine. Apparently, they're not too popular anymore. I wondered if there was/were reason(s) for this, so when I got to work I Googled for "cab over engine" and got a link to a forum titled "Yesterday's Trucks" where there was a thread wherein that very question had been asked. Serendipity. It is sometimes amazing what you can discover with just a little looking. Apparently, while being more maneuverable and having greater visibility from the cab, the cab over engine trucks got a reputation for being uncomfortable to drive and they were less streamlined and thus less fuel efficient.