1922 FORD MODEL T ROADSTER
Engine No. 635852
Black with black upholstery and black Panasote top
Engine: four cylinders, in-line, side valves, 2.9 liters, 22bhp; Gearbox: two-speed epicyclic; Suspension: front and rear by transverse semi-elliptic leaf spring; Brakes: mechanical drum to rear. Left hand drive.
The world's first true mass-production car, Henry Ford's Model T revolutionized the world on wheels. It first appears in 1908, and was consistently the lowest priced genuine automobile of its time. Ford's objective was to bring together lightness, strength, endurance and economy. From the beginning, the company's statements always emphasized that the Model T, although basic and rugged, was built of the very best materials and, as Henry Ford himself often declared, contained features that could not be bettered by any other car at any other price. Using a logical and well-planned mass-production system, it was possible to cut cost to the bone while maintaining quality. The Model T was to remain in production for nearly two decades, selling an unprecedented 15 million units.
It was neither the largest nor the most powerful mass production car of its time, but it was light and easy to handle. With its forgiving two-speed planetary transmission, it possessed outstanding hill-climbing qualities. The Model T was not very fast in standard trim, but on its 3.64:1 rear axle ratio, could lope along at 40-45mph for hour after hour on paved highways. If its mechanism changed little over the years, the bodies were gently updated as time passed, with a great variety of new types introduced to widen the Model T's appeal. There were Roadsters, Tudor and Fordor sedans, phaetons, trucks and even buses. Its unchanging nature encouraged accessory makers, who promoted everything from luxury car style radiator shells to auxiliary transmissions. It is probable that without it there would have been no 'Hot Rod' industry.
This Model T is naturally finished in entirely black, from paintwork to fittings and the Panasote top and side curtains. Equipped with Ford head and side lights, as well as a windscreen mounted spotlight, it also has a luggage holder fitted on the offside running board, and the radiator sports a chrome Royce midget model motormeter. Acquired by the collection many years ago, although once restored, condition is now much aged, but nevertheless serviceable. No collection can be complete without a Model T; the Roadster represents an archetypal example of an increasingly rare variant of this popular antique car.