Today’s drivers seem to think they “need” four-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, even if they live in a town where it snows once every five years and in which a gravel driveway qualifies as tough terrain. As for pickups, many ostensibly utilitarian examples on the market today pack as much leather and luxury as a Mercedes-Benz. That wasn’t always the case, of course. For most of their history, pickups featured barebones interiors; their owners needed them to do work, not to get to work. Even four-wheel drive was a relatively rare feature, and not until the end of the 1950s did each of the Big Three build its own light-duty 4x4.
By simply doing their jobs, most old-school trucks led a hard life in-period, which led to a low survival rate. This helps enhance vintage trucks' desirability, and 4x4 examples in particular are typically worth significantly more than their rear-drive counterparts. With the current popularity of all-wheel drive in new vehicles, it makes sense that early 4x4s are coming into fashion, and these late-'50s pickups are just three examples.
Read the full article on Hagerty.com: https://www.hagerty.com/media/valuation/these-3-light-duty-50s-trucks-broke-ground-on-four-wheel-dri...
My understanding has always been that 4x4 was not common in many places until it became regionally popular in the 70s (mountainy/snowy states). Widely popular by the end of the 80s for trucks and the emerging SUV craze.
This article would benefit from some production numbers for context. Pretty sure Napcos are quite rare having been mostly sold to logging companies and such that worked them hard.
That dodge as an export model is a Fargo. That body design runs from 1958 to 1966 with a longer wheel based after 1959-All cab parts ( door, fenders, hood, glass etc) from a D-100 to a D-900 fit and this might also include the chassis.