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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Vintage cars converge on WaimateTimaru Herald, February 7th
A 1925 Ford model T bought by Hadlee and Brunton to replicate the original one owned by the company when it was called Hadlee and Clough. . The Waimate Vintage Car Club is holding its 35th Wallaby Rally, featuring several rare vintage vehicles from ...Read more
A history of sport utility vehiclesTallahassee.com, February 6th
In 1928, Ford Motor Company designers enclosed the Model T truck providing the first "panel" truck to be marketed to the public. The panel ... However, according to the London Vintage Taxi Association, early French taxi cabs were powered by electric motor...Read more
Gunfight Friday: Savage 99 vs. German Guild RifleField and Stream (blog), February 5th
Those early Scopechiefs were made by Kowa and are excellent vintage scopes. The 99 stocks fit me so ... I love Savage 99s and would put out a fair amount of bread to own one with the beavertail fore end (model T?) in 250 Savage. Having said that I must ...Read more
Business briefs: Shopping center to be part of Skyplex commercial parkThe News-Press, February 4th
Edison & Ford Winter Estates will host its annual antique car show featuring Ford models from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday. Each year, classic car owners and club members exhibit more than 100 cars on the Ford ... the Calooshatchee River as a tribute...Read more
Local Model T club aids Affleck filmConcord Monitor, February 3rd
Members of the Central N.H. Model T Club joined other New England Model T clubs for a drive into the past. Specifically, the 1920s in Boston. The car clubs volunteered their vehicles and, in some cases, themselves for the filming of Ben Affleck's...Read more
Learning how to drive a vintage Model T Ford (VIDEO)Malay Mail Online, January 21st
NEW YORK, Jan 22 ? Starting in 1908, Henry Ford sold his novel Model T cars as the first to be really accessible to the masses. What's more, he marketed them as easy to handle for casual drivers and (gasp!) women since they started with a button...Read more
Driving a 1914 Model T Will Reteach You How to Use a CarBloomberg, January 21st
Driving this Model T was more difficult than many of the other vintage manual cars I've driven. The throttle is touchy, and the pedals all have to be right in line in order to brake or to go in neutral. But, like most things, it just takes some time to...Read more
Model T Fords buffeted by wind during rallyTimaru Herald, January 16th
Organised by the Model T Ford of New Zealand Club, a convoy of more than 30 cars set off from Timaru for Twizel on Thursday morning. The rally stopped at Waihao Forks, near Waimate, for morning tea, before continuing on to Kurow Winery for lunch and ...Read more