Wanting to diversify, Allis-Chalmers built its first farm tractor in 1914. The tractor business grew, and in 1928 a line of crawler tractors was started. And when Allis-Chalmers decided to focus on the small and medium sized farmer, they came up with new designs that turned out to be one of the most popular series of tractors ever produced. The WC tractor was first built in 1933 as a prototype tractor. Soon to follow was the Model B tractor, then the Model C in 1940, the Model CA in 1950, the Model WD in 1948 and the Allis-Chalmers WD45 in 1953.
Over the years, the company made a series of acquisitions, including Simplicity Manufacturing, Inc., and introduced a number of product lines. In addition to farm tractors, Allis-Chalmers offered combines, hydroturbines, values and pumps, compressors, electric motors and Simplicity lawn & garden tractors. By 1979, Allis-Chalmers had grown into a $2 billion corporation and was one of the prominent machinery and tractor manufacturers in the United States.
The rapid economic change during the 1980s, however, created financial struggles from which Allis-Chalmers could not recover. It sold Simplicity manufacturing to its management in 1983. This move was followed by the sale of its farm equipment division to K-H-D AG of Germany (which was renamed Deutz-Allis) in 1985. Deutz-Allis was later sold to its management and became what is now the AGCO Corporation.
What remained of the manufacturing businesses were dispersed in 1998 and the company officially closed its offices in Milwaukee in January 1999. The remaining service businesses became Allis-Chalmers Energy in Houston, Texas.
In 2008, Briggs & Stratton Power Products, LLC, announced it would be restoring the Allis-Chalmers brand to the lawn and garden industry with two new lawn tractors. Available at Simplicity dealerships beginning this fall, the new tractors harken back to the glory days of the Allis-Chalmers farm tractor. The design of the new AC130 lawn tractor is reminiscent of these products, leaning heavily on the familiar orange color and distinctive Allis-Chalmers logo.