The system was sold in 1945 by Huntington's estate to National City Lines, a company that was purchasing transit systems across the country. National City Lines, along with its investors that included Firestone Tire, Standard Oil of California (now Chevron Corporation) and General Motors, were later convicted of conspiring to monopolize the sale of buses and related products to local transit companies controlled by National City Lines and other companies[n 1] in what became known as the General Motors streetcar conspiracy. National City Lines purchased Key System, which operated streetcars systems in Northern California, the following year.
The company was renamed as Los Angeles Transit Lines. The new company introduced 40 new ACF-Brilltrolley buses which had originally been intended for the Key System trolley bus system in Oakland which was being converted by National City Lines to buses in late 1948.
Many lines were converted to buses in the late 1940s and early 1950s.
Public ownership and finale
The last remaining lines were taken over by the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transit Authority (a predecessor to the current agency, The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro)) along with the remains of the Pacific Electric Railway in 1958. The agency removed the remaining five streetcar lines (J, P, R, S and V) and two trolley bus lines (2 and 3), replacing electric service with diesel buses on March 31, 1963.
In May 2011, the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, the city of Los Angeles, and several stakeholders began conducting studies and public meetings to identify the feasibility of restoring streetcar service downtown. The streetcar restoration efforts will further support in revitalizing Downtown Los Angeles's historic core and connect people to employment centers, shopping districts, civic resources, cultural institutions, historic landmarks and entertainment venues within the project study area. A restoration of the streetcar service is anticipated to underscore the overall renaissance occurring in the downtown area of Los Angeles.
^ ab"Book Review: Los Angeles Railway Yellow Cars". "By the end of World War II, the Huntington estate sold its majority interest to Chicago-based National City Lines. LARY became the Los Angeles Transit Lines, and bigger changes were in store. Many lines were converted to bus operation through the late forties and fifties. Never mind that NCL was partially owned by bus, tire, and gasoline suppliers. Though Federal anti-trust action was taken against NCL, the damage was already done. Los Angeles was officially in love with the automobile."
^United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit (1951), para 33, "We have considered carefully all the evidence offered and excluded. We think that the court's rulings were fair, and that, having permitted great latitude in admitting testimony as to intent, purpose and reasons for the making of the contracts, the court, in its discretion, was entirely justified in excluding the additional testimony offered."