Founded by Henry Ford in 1903, the Ford Motor Company was America’s first superpower car manufacturer. In addition to pioneering assembly-line manufacturing techniques, Ford has produced more cars that collectors covet over the years—from Model Ts to Mustangs, plus a lot in between—than just about any other carmaker.

In 1903, Ford released its first run of Model A cars. It only manufactured this initial version of the Model A for two years, and these early Ford vehicles are nearly impossible for collectors to find.

The next few years were formative for the company. In 1907, Ford built its last car with the steering wheel on the right side, the Model S. A year later Ford introduced the Model T (though it was considered a 1909 model), which changed car manufacturing forever. The Model T, or "Tin Lizzie," as it was often called, is one of the most collected antique cars ever made, and is the anchor for dozens of collectors groups around the United States and the world.

It is unclear how many vintage Model Ts still exist, but estimates range from 50,000 to 150,000.

Though they were extremely popular and remain so today, some collectors do not enjoy Model Ts as much as later Model As, mainly because the Model T cannot realistically be driven on modern highways. It was built with a belt transmission that only allows the car to go 25-30 MPH, and the brakes are essentially useless.

As is the case with all vintage cars, collectors enjoy restoring Model Ts, and some even collect Model T parts such as generators and steering wheels.

The Model T was also the first car Ford built on an assembly line. Ford needed a means to streamline production to meet the high demand for the car, and the assembly line, which ...

Model Ts remained the most popular American car model for almost two decades before it fell out of favor with the public. Out of Ford’s need to adjust to a changing market, the new Model A was born.

Although the second run of Model As only lasted from 1927 to 1931, they remain one of the most highly collected vintage Ford models. The Model A possessed a regular transmission, which allowed drivers to reach speeds of 45 MPH—at 40 horses, it had double the power of the Model T.

There were various versions of Model As: two-seater coupes, roadsters with retractable tops, two-door sedans, and four-door sedans, to name a few. All are sought after today, though the Roadster, which ironically was the most modestly priced Model A, and the Cabriolet (a convertible with windows) are the most collected.

In 1932, Ford came out with the Model B and the Model 18, which is commonly referred to as the Ford V-8 because of its engine. Other than the number of cylinders under the hood, the two models are virtually identical.

Many collectors, especially those who like to drive their vintage cars, enjoy the various models of the Ford V-8. Because of the more powerful engine, vintage V-8s can reach speeds of 50 MPH or more.

Ford continued pumping out cars through the first half of the 20th century, but it was not until the 1950s that it released car lines that attracted cult followings like its earlier Model Ts and Model As.

For example, in 1955, Ford came out with its first run of Thunderbirds. T-Birds, as they are called for short, have been a collecting niche ever since. Ford produced 13 generations of Thunderbirds until it stopped producing the car in 2005.

Considered the first personal luxury car, the Thunderbird came in a number of different models, including convertible. There are hundreds of collectors in the United States who are dedicated to just T-Birds, which means that the earlier generation models are, not surprisingly, more desired.

A year after releasing its first Thunderbird, Ford debuted its initial Fairlane model, which it would continue to sell in the U.S. until 1971 and in Australia until 2007. Early Fairlanes—whose name derives from Henry Ford’s estate—were considered full-size cars, but from 1962 on they were mid-sized.

In 1960, another collectible car rolled off the Ford assembly line, the Galaxie. This was a full-size family sedan, but it was also a high-performance vehicle and is considered by many to be a predecessor of the muscle car.

While all of these cars are popular among collectors, the undisputed most collectible Ford is the Mustang, which debuted in 1964. The Mustang is the only car that trumps the collectability of the earlier Model Ts and Model As.

This “pony car,” which is still manufactured today, was designed to feature a long hood and a short rear deck.

Other carmakers such as Chevrolet and Plymouth tried to imitate the appeal of the early Mustang, with the Camaro and Barracuda respectively, but no company was able to replicate the Mustang. The car became a cultural icon, appearing in James Bond movies and on the covers of countless magazines.

Early generation Mustangs from the 1960s and ’70s are most collectible. Some Mustangs released between 1965 and 1970, known as Shelby Mustangs, are especially popular.

Other collectible Ford models include the Lotus Cortina, the Consul, and the Capri.

About our sources | Got something to add?

▼ Expand to read the full article ▼

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Jersey Vintage Ford Collectibles

Jersey Vintage Ford Collectibles

Sam Baker's excellent collection of vintage Ford porcelain and neon signs and related memorabilia from the 1920s an… [read review or visit site]

The Ford Cortina Web Site

The Ford Cortina Web Site

‘Drives Like Fun, Saves Like Crazy’ was the Ford Cortina marketing slogan, and this site certainly lives up to … [read review or visit site]

1957Ford.com

1957Ford.com

The new model year Fords are in, and its 1957! Looking at a Fairlane, Tudor Sedan, Ranchero or Country Squire Wagon… [read review or visit site]

Hemmings Auto Blogs

Hemmings Auto Blogs

This great (and frequently updated) blog from the folks at Hemmings Motor News is a visual feast of old and new pho… [read review or visit site]



Clubs & Associations

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

1970 Ford Other Pickups -- 1970 Camelot Cruiser Rv Ford C 900 Tractor Trailer By Gas Monkey Garage !1967 Ford Mustang Fastback 1967 Mustang Fastback 289 4 Speed1932 Ford 4-door Phaeton Touring Convertible 1932 32 Ford 4-door Phaeton Model 18 Convertible * Older Restoration1956 Ford F-100 1956 Ford Pickup F100 – Big Window Air Ride, F-100 Antique Pick-up Hot Rod1922 Ford Model A Hot Rod Rat Rod Teel Body 1922 Ford Chopped Channeled 350 V8 Blower 400 Auto 22 23 24 25 26 271935 Ford Other 3 Window 1935 Ford 3 Window Coupe1969 Ford Torino Torino 428 Cobra Jet 1969 Ford Q-code Torino Cobra, 428 Cobra Jet, 4-spd, Indian Fire, Marti Report1970 Ford Mustang Mach 1 428 4 Gear Q Code 1970 Ford Mustang 428 Cobra Jet 4 Speed Original Paint Not R Code1968 Ford Mustang Coupe 1968 Coupe Used Automatic1966 Ford Mustang Base Fastback 2-door 1966 Ford Mustang Fastback Autographed Shelby Clone, Project Car Needs Work Lqqk1971 Ford Torino Gt 1971 Ford Torino Gt No Reserve1949 Ford Other Pickups Guns & Ammo 1949 Ford F6/ Hot Rod/rat Rod/ Guns & Amo..gmalum Head 454 Ci /one Bad A$$ Tk!1973 Ford F-250 Ranger 1973 Ford F250 4x4 Ranger Highboy1971 Ford Bronco 302 1971 Ford Bronco 302/3-speed Factory Ac **rust Free**1971 Ford Mustang Mach 1 1971 Ford Mustang Mach 1 429 Super Cobra Jet Drag Pack1967 Ford Mustang Gt 1967 Mustang S Code 390 Gt 4 Speed Fastback1956 Ford F-100 Custom Cab 1956 Ford F100 Short Bed Classic Old School Hot Rod Cruiser Rare Vintage F-1001950 Ford Other Coupe 1950 Ford Coupe1935 Ford Other 5 Window V-8 Supercharged Coupe 1935 Ford 5 Window Coupe,flathead V-8 Supercharged,36korig,miles,older Frame-off1969 Ford Mustang Shelby Gt500 Ram Air 1969 Ford Shelby Gt500 Ram Air Mustang - A Rare Classic1964 Ford Thunderbird Very Original Good Running/driving Weekend Cruiser 19641966 Ford Mustang Gt 1966 Mustang Convertible Gt 289 4 Speed Show & Drive No Reserve 1965 1967 19681956 Ford Crown Victoria 2 Door Hardtop Hard Top 1956 Ford With Mustang 5.0 1955 1957 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 Corvette1970 Ford Bronco Sport 1970 Ford Bronco 5.0 H.o. 4-speed Manual1931 Ford Model A Rumble Seat Coupe 1931 Ford Model A Coupe1932 Ford Other Black 1932 Ford All Steel1934 Ford Other Pickups 1934 Ford Pick Up Steel Body 350 V8 700r Trans Ac Disc Brakes Four Link1953 Ford Mainline Base 1952 Ford Mainline Base 3.9l1966 Ford Mustang 1966 Ford Mustang Fastback 289 Ps Automatic Trans Billet Specialty Wheels 2+21977 Ford Model A 1977 F 250 Original Motor And Tranny Beautiful !!!!! All Records1970 Ford Galaxie Xl Convertible 27,784 Actual Original Miles! 1970 Ford Galaxie Xl Convertible Simply Gorgeous Classic Cruiser! Low Miles!1965 Ford Mustang Fastback 1965 Ford Mustang1963 Ford Thunderbird 2 Door 1963 Ford Thunderbird Convertible1950 Ford Other Custom Clone F1 Hot Rod Truck 1950 Ford F1 Custom Pickup Rebuilt 428 Engine Automatic Lime Green1930 Ford Model A 1930 Ford Model A1967 Ford Mustang '67 Mustang Fastback California Car, V8 & Options 1967 Mustang Fastback V81965 Ford Mustang Fastback 1965 Ford Mustang Fastback 2+2 5 Speed Rust Free1966 Ford Galaxie 500 1966 Ford Galaxie 5001950 Ford Custom Coupe 1950 Ford Custom Coupe1955 Ford Thunderbird Base/mild Custom 1955 Ford Thunderbird / Mild Custom Very Good Condition Second Owner Estate Sale1970 Ford Torino Torino Gt Fastback 429 Cobra Jet 1970 Ford Torino Gt Fastback 429 Cobra Jet, Ac, Power, Deluxe Marti Report1975 Ford Bronco Ranger Package 1975 Ford Bronco1972 Ford Bronco 1972 Ford Bronco Vintage Air Built 302/3 Speed James Duff Suspension1965 Ford Mustang 1964 1/2 Ford Mustang Convertible 260, Power Steering, Auto, Longterm Ownership1966 Ford Fairlane 2 Door Hardtop Xl 500 390 V8 1966 Fairlane Xl 500 2 Door Bucket Seat W/console Automatic1964 Ford Thunderbird Thunderbird Cvt 1964 Ford Thunderbird Convertible, Florentine Green, Automatic, All Power! Look1970 Ford Other 1970 Ford Maverick With 2011 Ford Mustang Gt 5.0 Coyote Engine1965 Ford Mustang 2 Door Fastback 1965 Fastback 289 Solid Beautiful Black And Gold Hertz Gt 350 Trim Very Sharp1968 Ford Mustang 2 Door Coupe 1968 Ford Mustang1977 Ford F-250 1977 Ford F2501956 Ford F-100 1956 Ford F100 Custom Resto-mod A/c ,4w Disc, Power Rack Front,. Adj 4 Link 19701938 Ford F-100 1938 Green & Black Totally Restored Stunning Truck, Great Driver1930 Ford Model A 1930 Model A Ford Briggs Body Town Sedan1971 Ford Torino 1971 Ford Torino Cobra1977 Ford F-350 Xlt 77 Ford F350 Crew Cab 2x41965 Ford Mustang 1965 Ford Mustang Convertible Classic Car Barn Find Project1969 Ford Mustang 2 Door Fastback 1969 Fastback 351c Auto Mach 1 Trim Very Solid Beautiful Grabber Yellow Sharp1966 Ford Mustang Gt Convertible 1966 Ford Mustang Gt Convertible A Code 289 V8 4v Carb 4 Speed Manual1929 Ford Model A 1929 Ford Model A Roadster1965 Ford Thunderbird Convertible 1965 Ford Thunderbird Convertible Matching Numbers