First released in October of 1908, the Ford Model T was designed to be a car for the people. Unlike cars that had come before it, the Model T was made to be easy to operate and inexpensive enough that any working person could own one. Ford’s redesigned manufacturing process made this possible. Instead being assembled in place, Model Ts moved along a monorail, with large machines placed in the order they were needed to produce individual car parts. This moving production line became an instant hit, cutting fabrication time in half. Within five years, Ford had adapted the method to each of its various assembly lines, minimizing the company’s expenses and revolutionizing the modern factory.
Ford’s most popular Model T, the Touring series, originally cost $850, or approximately a teacher’s yearly salary in 1908. Although this was a comparatively reasonable price, the Model T’s straightforward operation and ease of repair are what really made it sell. The Model T’s high clearance, light weight, and four-cylinder engine allowed the car to handle nearly any rough road surface. The vehicles traveled an average of 10-12 miles per gallon, and could sometimes reach speeds of more than 30 miles an hour, though only on the best roads. The worst that could be said for them is that their brakes were terrible.
The first Model T design came in green, grey, and red, and quickly gained the nickname “Tin Lizzie,” a reference to motorcars being cheap metal versions of horses, which were often called Liz or Lizzie. In 1914, Ford began its famous “any color as long as it’s black” strategy to minimize costs and improve durability. The Model T’s simplicity generated a huge aftermarket for accessories and parts, as most of the original vehicles didn’t even include an instrument panel.
Following World War I, Ford’s sales dropped during America’s postwar economic recession, and the company finally began to rethink its Model T design. Though business soon improved to reach a new peak in 1923, with 2.2 million cars produced, pressure from competing automakers’ yearly design upgrades pushed the company towards a new Model A.
During 18 years of production, Ford had created a stunning 16.5 million Model Ts. Named the “Car of the Century” in 1999, the Ford Model T is still the most collected and well-respected car ever produced.
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'Rolling Art'The Missourian, October 1st
A 1963 Chrysler Turbine — one of only 50 cars of its kind ever made — will be on display under the Farmers' Market in Downtown Washington this Sunday, Oct. 5, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. as part of an Invitational Antique Vehicle Display that will close...Read more
Around the Town: It's time for OktoberfestArizona Daily Sun, October 1st
The Heritage Festival on Saturday will feature living history demonstrations such as candle-dipping, weaving, chuck wagon cooking, mountain man encampment, vintage baseball, 1915 Model T rides, music, food, and more. Admission is $6 for ages 18-64; ...Read more
68th ANNUAL LOS ALAMOS OLD DAYS PARADE WINNERS ANNOUNCEDSanta Barbara Independent, September 29th
Automobile—Antique: Lompoc Valley Historical Society Model T Racing Roadster driven by Brian Donelson. 7. Automobile—Classic: 1949 Plymouth Special Deluxe driven by Paul Taylor. 8. Tractor—Antique: 1928 John Deere Model D driven by Barry ...Read more
Man's lifetime of unfinished projects become son's hobbyLos Angeles Times, September 28th
Scattered here and there is a collection of pewter dishware, antique baby carriages, a trunk filled with Mason jars and even a penny-farthing bicycle that its former owner was once photographed riding. Related: Dennis Holland dies at ... Nearby is the...Read more
Margo rides the 'Model T'WXII The Triad, September 25th
THEY'LL LEARN TO WORK ON TRANSMISSIONS AND ELECTRICAL SYSTEMS. LET'S SEND THINGS OUT TO MARGOT. SHE IS SITTING IN A CAR RIGHT NOW. TELL US ABOUT WHAT YOU ARE IN AND WHAT IS GOING ON. I AM IN A VINTAGE CAR...Read more
Model T Ford Club to Host Annual Event in San AngeloSan Angelo LIVE!, September 24th
Many of the vintage automobiles are expected to be in town this October for several days' worth of activities. ... “He had a car collection, and one of the vehicles he owned was a Model T Ford, which he let me drive one day...and I got to drive it for...Read more
Antique cars at Boonesborough DaysHerald-Mail Media, September 8th
Antique cars at Boonesborough Days. Bridgette Kinna of Thurmont, Md., and Ryan Uppercue of Boonsboro look over a row of Ford Model T antique cars Sunday during Boonesborough Days at Shafer Memorial Park in Boonsboro. Antique cars at ...Read more
Model T Ford marks its century in styleGladstone Observer, September 4th
Miriam Vale Vintage and classic cars show - Gordon Whittaker with his 1914 T Model Ford. Photo Mike Richards / The Observer Mike Richards. A FORD Model T owned by Gordon Whittaker is turning 100. Gladstone Vintage Car Club is tuning up to celebrate ...Read more