Ford introduced the Model A in 1928 as the successor to the very popular Model T. The Model A had 6,800 parts compared to the 5,000 parts contained in the Model T. The car was sold in four standard colors and by March of 1930, sales had reached three million dollars and nine body styles were available. The Model A ceased being produced in 1932.
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The Model A was introduced by Ford in 1928. It doubled the horsepower its predecessor had by offering a strong 40 horses. It was a more sophisticated car compared to the Model T which was in production for eighteen years.
The Model A had a wheel base of 103.5 inches, was 165 inches long, was 67 inches wide and weighed in at 2,265 pounds.
The Model A was produced with almost two dozen different body styles, not including cars produced for commercial purposes. Because Chevrolet was selling more cars and had a better reputation for reliability, Ford was doing everything they could to attract buyers.
The Model A had a L-head inline 4 cylinder engine that was water cooled. The fuel was delivered by gravity and the car had a visual fuel gauge.
The cars transmission was a 3-speed conventional sliding gear manual unsynchronized unit and it had a single speed reverse. The Model A was the first Ford to introduce a standard set of driver controls with conventional clutch and brake pedals, throttle, and gearshift.
Two of the models of the Ford Model A was the Standard and Deluxe Phaeton. Brand new, a Deluxe Phaeton sold for $580.00
The Model A Roadster was a favorite out of all the models. The sporty lines and driving enjoyment this car brought set it apart from the other models Ford built.
The Model A Deluxe Coupe came with the rumble seat in the back. While not popular because it left the passengers to face the elements, the last car produced with a rumble seat was the Triumph 2000 Roadster in 1949.
The Model A Tudor had a base price of $495.00 but came with a $15 front and rear bumper option and a spare tire and cover for $15.40. 208,562 Tudor’s were built in 1928 and it was the most popular model sold between 1928 and 1931.
The Model A Fordor had upgraded door knobs, chrome accents and a SLANT windshield. The back and top side was painted the same color as the car. It retailed for $570.00.
The Model A Town Car was the limousine of the day. The the Briggs Manufacturing Company in Detroit Michigan was known to make the bodies on several town cars, including cars for commercial use.
Ford produced over 26,000 pickups in 1928. In August of 1928, the pickup had a full metal roof, roll up windows in the doors and and came in black or Moss Green.
Henry Ford also introduced the “H”pattern shifting for the transmission this year. It was a lot easier to drive compared to the three pedal planetary transmissions that were used in all the Model T’s.
Henry Ford was set in his ways. He wasn’t willing to change the look of his car, the Model T. But as other car manufacturer’s were seeing spikes in sales, Ford wasn’t. So he shut down the production plant for six months until the Model A was ready to be produced.
While Henry Ford was stubborn on not wanting to change the design of the Model T, his son, Edsel Ford was secretly designing a new car. It was Edsel who played an important role in the Model A.
The Model T was a project car that developed as it was in production. Using the experience of the Model T, the Model A was already designed when it began production. There was little change to the car after it began production.
To advertise the new Model T, Henry Ford relied on the media to reach the buying public. The marketing campaign worked. Ford had a difficult time meeting the demands. They were producing roughly 4,000 new cars a day in 1928. That number increased to 9,200 cars per day by June of 1930.
Henry Ford learned from his mistake of keeping the Model T in production without introducing a new line of vehicles. As the 1928 Model A was being produced, Ford started designing the next model. This led to the introduction of the V8 in 1932.
The introduction of the Model A was exactly what the car buyer was looking for. It separated the look of the car from the image of the horse and buggy and looked more like a car. With the public desiring more creature comforts like an electric ignition, the car was a huge success.
Almost 90 years later, the Model A is still a favorite for car lovers. While some have remained loyal to the car’s original design, others have created head turning automobiles that make any car guy drool. Henry Ford’s mark still stands today.
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