The American Automobile Industry in World War Two
An American Auto Industry Heritage Tribute
By David D Jackson

Overview      The U.S. Auto Industry at the Normandy Invasion, June 6, 1944    The U.S. Auto Industry and the B-29 Bomber   U.S. Auto Industry Army-Navy "E" Award Winners   The Complete listing of All Army-Navy "E" Award Winners   Sherman Tanks of the American Auto Industry   Tank Destroyers of the American Auto Industry    M26 Pershing Tanks of the American Auto Industry

    Automobile Manufacturers:  American Bantam Car Company   Checker   Chrysler   Crosley   Ford   General Motors   Graham-Paige   Hudson
   Nash-Kelvinator   Packard      Studebaker    Willys-Overland

General Motors Divisions
(Undergoing development) Aeroproducts   Brown-Lipe-Chapin   Buick   Cadillac   Chevrolet   Cleveland Diesel   Delco Appliance   Delco Products   Delco Radio   Delco-Remy   Detroit Diesel   Detroit Transmission   Electro-Motive   Fisher Body   Frigidaire   GM Proving Grounds   GM of Canada   Guide Lamp   Harrison Radiator   Hyatt Bearings   Inland   Moraine Products   New Departure   Oldsmobile   Packard Electric   Pontiac   Saginaw Malleable Iron   Saginaw Steering Gear   Southern California Division   Rochester Products   United Motors Service

Truck Manufacturers:   American LaFrance   Autocar  Diamond T   International Harvester    Mack Truck
   Marmon-Herrington Company   Pacific Car and Foundry  Reo Motor Car Company   Ward LaFrance Truck Corporation   White Motor Company

Automotive Tire
   B.F. Goodrich    Firestone Tire and Rubber Company
 Updates and Additions  


 Cleveland Diesel Division of General Motors Corporation in World War Two / WWII
Cleveland, OH
Originally the Winton Motor Carriage Company
Rest in Peace

This page added 10-20-2016.

Why is the German U-Boat U-505 the first photo on this page for the Cleveland Diesel Engine Division of General Motors?  Because the Fleet Tug USS Abnacki, powered by four Cleveland Diesel 12-278A main engines, towed this U-Boat across the Atlantic Ocean, from Africa to Bermuda, after its capture by US Naval Forces in WWII.  Thanks to the Cleveland Diesel12-278A engines, millions of persons have been able to visit and tour the U-505 at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago.   Author's photo.

The USS Abnacki has the U-505 under tow across that Atlantic Ocean, en route to Bermuda.

The USS Abnacki was the lead ship for the twenty two Abnaki Class fleet tugs, all powered by Cleveland Diesel 12-278A engines.  Each engine had 12 cylinders, with 278 cubic inches; totaling 3336 cubic inches total displacement.

History:  Alexander Winton started the Winton Bicycle Company in Cleveland, OH in 1890.  Seven years later he formed the Winton Motor Carriage Company, producing motor vehicles until 1924.  After that, Winton focused on both gasoline and diesel engine manufacture.  In 1930 General Motors purchased Winton for its diesel engine expertise, and formed the Winton Engine Corporation, a wholly owned subsidy of GM.  Winton Engine designed and built the first railroad diesel engines for General Motors, which were used to start a new GM Division that built railroad diesels and locomotive, the Electromotive Division.   In 1937 GM made Winton Engine into a division of GM, the Cleveland Diesel Engine Division.  Its engines focused mainly on marine applications.  Its diesel engines were used during WWII for both main propulsion and auxiliary power sources in many types of ships for the US Navy.

This very rare 1899 Winton is on display at the Ohio History Center in Columbus, OH.  Author's photo.

 This is one of more than 100 vehicles that Winton sold in 1899, making it the largest manufacturer of vehicles in the U.S. for that year.  Author's photo.

The Cleveland Diesel Division of General Motors won the Army-Navy "E" Award six times.

Cleveland Diesel Division of GM World War Two / WWII Production Numbers / Statistics:

Cleveland Diesel Division provided many engines of various sizes for use in US Naval ships.  Engines came in various sizes depending on the number of cylinders, as the displacement of the cylinders was constant.  Engines were designated by AB-CDE where AB or A was the number of cylinders and CDE the displacement of each cylinder in cubic inches.   Multiplying AB times CDE gives the total displacement of the engine in cubic inches. 

Cleveland Diesel Powered Ships - World War Two

Class of ship Number in Class Cleveland Engine Type Number of engines Total Engines Comments
Abnacki ATF-96 to ATF-117 22 Cleveland Diesel 12-278A diesel main engines 4 88 4 General Electric generators single screw
AbnackiATF-96 to ATF-117 22 Cleveland Diesel 3-268A auxiliary services engines 3 66  
110 Foot Subchasers SC-497 class 195  Cleveland Diesel 8-268A ??? 2 390 243 of the class used the GM Electro-Motive pancake engine
Auxiliary Motor Minesweepers YMS 481  Cleveland Diesel 8-268A 2 962  
Cannon DE Class 72 See Below 9 648  Four main propulsion and four service engines each
All Submarine Classes 136 See Below


4 1,648  
Total Engines 627     3,832  


Cleveland Diesel Powered Cannon Class Destroyer Escorts  - World War Two

Class of  Ship Number in Class Cleveland Engine Type Number of engines Total Engines Comments
Cannon DE 72 Cleveland Diesel Model 16-278A, 16 cylinder,  main propulsion engines with electric drive 4 288 Twin Screw
    Cleveland Diesel Model 8-268A, 8 Cylinder, 350 HP for ship's electrical service 4 288 Located in the Forward engine room B1, Forward Motor room B2, Aft Engine Room B3, and Aft Motor room B-4
    Cleveland Diesel Model 3-268A, 3 Cylinder, 150 HP for emergency ship's electrical service and 1 72  
Totals 72     648 The Cannon Class Destroyer Escorts each had nine Cleveland Diesel Engines on it for a total of 648.


Cleveland Diesel Powered Submarines - World War Two
Class of Submarine Number in Class Number with Cleveland Diesel Engines Type Cleveland Diesel Engines Number of engines Total Engines Names of boats with Cleveland Diesels in Class
P (Porpoise) 10 10  Cleveland Diesel 16-201A diesel engines, 1,300 hp (970 kW) each, driving electrical generators 4 40 First use of the Winton/GM Cleveland Diesel engines in an American submarine. They were built from 1933 to 1937.

Porpoise, Pike, Shark, Tarpon, Perch, Pickerel, Permit, Plunger, Pollack, Pompano 
Salmon 6 6  Cleveland Diesel 12-278  4 24 The six submarines were originally built and powered by four Hooven-Owens-Rentschler (H.O.R.) Engines in 1936 to 1938.

In 1943 and 1944 the six Salmon Class submarines had their H.O.R. engines replaced by Cleveland Diesel 12-278 engines.  They were:

  Salmon, Seal, Skipjack, Snapper, Stingray, and Sturgeon
Sargo 10 10  Cleveland Diesel 12-278   diesel engines (two direct drive, two driving electrical generators), 1,535 hp each 4 40 Built in 1937 to 1939.  The Squalus, Swordfish,  Sealion, and Seawolf originally were built with Cleveland Diesel 12-278 engines.

The following Sargo Class Submarines originally had Hooven-Owens-Rentschler (H.O.R.) engines installed.  They were replaced by GM 12-278A engines in 1943 -1944.  Sargo,Saury,  Spearfish,  Scuplin, Seadragon, Searaven

Tambor 6 3  Cleveland Diesel 16-248 4 12 Three of the six boats had GM Cleveland Diesel Engines.  They were: Tambor, Tautog and Thresher.  The remaining submarines had Fairbanks-Morse engines.
Gar (These are a later group of Tambor Class submarines 6 6 Cleveland Diesel 16-248 4 24 Three of the six in the class were powered by Cleveland Diesel Engines. 

Gar, Grampus, Grayback

The remaining submarines had Fairbanks-Morse engines.

Gato Class 77 44 Cleveland Diesel 16-248 main engines 1,600 HP



4 176  Forty-three of the 77 in the Gato Class were powered by Cleveland Diesels. They were:
Gato, Greenling, Grouper, Growler, Grunion, Guardfish, Barb, Blackfish, Bluefish, Bonefish, Cod, Cero, Corvina, Darter, Wahoo, Whale, Angler, Bashaw, Bluegill, Bream, Cavalla, Cobia, Croaker, Dace, Dorado, Flasher, Flier, Flounder, Gabilan, Peto, Pogy, Pompon, Puffer, Rasher, Raton, Ray, Redfin, Robalo, Rock, Golet, Guavina, Guitarro, Hammerhead, Runner

Twenty of the 77 were lost in combat.

Balao 120 61 Cleveland Diesel 16-278 4 124 Sixty-one of the 120 in the Balao Class were powered by Cleveland Diesels.

Balao, Billfish, Bowfin, Cabrilla, Capelin, Cisco, Crevalle, Perch, Shark,  Sealion, Barbel, Barbero, Baya,  Becuna, Bergall, Besugo, Blackfin, Caiman, Blenny, Blower, Blueback, Boarfish, Charr, Chub, Brill, Bugara, Bullhead, Bumper, Cabezon, Dentuda, Capitaine, Carbonero, Carp, Catfish, Entemedor, Chivo, Chopper, Clamagore, Clobber, Cochino, Corporal, Cubera, Cusk, Diodon, Dogfish, Greenfish, Halfbeak, Hardhead, Hawkbill, Icefish, Jallao, Kete, Kraken, Lagarto, Lamprey, Lizardfish, Loggerhead, Macabi, Mapiro, Menhaden, Mero,

Tench Class 29 5 Cleveland Diesel 16-278 4 20 Five of the Tench Class used used Cleveland Diesel engines.  They were the Tench, Turbot Corsair, Ulua, and Runner.
Total   136     1,648  

The USS Evarts, the lead ship in the class of destroyer escorts by the same name.  The 97 in the class were all powered by four Cleveland Diesel 16-278

A Cleveland Diesel engine is being installed in a U.S. submarine during WWII.

The USS Cod  is on display in Cleveland, OH.  It is equipped with Cleveland Diesel engines, all of which are operational.   Author's photo.

 The tops of two 16-248 Cleveland Diesel engines are visible in the aft engine room.  Each of the sixteen cylinders contains 248 cubic inches of displacement.  The bottom half of the engines are under the floor plates.  Author's photo.

  Author's photo.

 Author's photo.

Author's photo.

The forward engine room on the USS Cod.  Author's photo.

Water evaporators processed 1,000 gallons a day for batteries and crew drinking.  Author's photo.

 Author's photo.

Author's photo.

The following photos of the USS Slater DE-766 in Albany, NY are courtesy of Bill Maloney.

The USS Slater DE-766 is the only Cannon Class Destroyer Escort on display.  It is located on the Hudson River in Albany, NY.  It is one of only two Destroyer Escorts on public display in the United States.  The Cannon Class DE's had a total of nine Cleveland Diesel engines on board for main propulsion and ship's service electrical power.  Photo courtesy of Bill Maloney.

One of the four Cleveland Diesel Cleveland Diesel Model 16-278A, 16 cylinder, main propulsion engines that drove electric generators.  The power produced by the generators then drove electric motors that drove the propellers. Photo courtesy of Bill Maloney.

One of four Cleveland Diesel 8-268 350 HP engines that drove generators for the ship's electrical power.  Photo courtesy of Bill Maloney.

Photo courtesy of Bill Maloney.

Cleveland Diesel 3-268 150 HP emergency ship's service generator.  Photo courtesy of Bill Maloney.

This drawing shows the Cleveland Diesel Division Plant 3 at 8684 Clinton Road in Brooklyn, OH.  The building still stands today, housing a trucking company.




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