Ford has been building cars for over a century. Since 1903 we’ve rolled out some excellent automobiles, and while we believe our latest lineup is the best yet, we can’t deny there’ve been some real gems in the years past.
So we here at Team Ford decided, what the heck? Even as we move further into the bright automotive future, let’s take a moment to look back at the history of the Ford dynasty and highlight some of the greats from years past.
Ford Model T
When you talk about classic Fords, you can’t start anywhere but the beginning. Available in 1909, the Model T is considered one of the most influential vehicles in history! It was the first automobile affordable to the average consumer, thanks to assembly line mass production. This innovation moved driving from a hobby for the wealthy, to an affordable option for the middle-class. In the days before model years, every Model T bears that name, even though the look of the car evolved over the years. Boasting a whopping 20 horsepower, and able to run on gasoline, kerosine and ethanol, the original Model T engine saw little change until production ceased in 1927.
Ford Model 18
Also commonly referred to simply as the “Ford V8,” the Model 18 was the first affordable mass-marketed car with a powerful V8 engine. Introduced in 1932, the V8 had an astonishing 65 horsepower—a capability which only improved in the coming years thanks to advances in engine technology. The V8 came in a variety of body styles, but the Deuce coupe and Highboy Roadster are probably the most well-known. If you imagine a classic hot-rod, the image in your mind is the Ford Model 18.
Introduced in 1955, the Ford Thunderbird was the first of what is now considered the “personal luxury automobile,” with an emphasis put on driving comfort, rather than performance. The original Thunderbird was available as a convertible coupe, and still looks like a stylish ride. Eventually, the design was reworked to allow for four doors, and hardtops. Even though the Thunderbird’s emphasis was comfort, it came armed with a sporty V8 engine capable of competing with any car in its day. The descendent of the Thunderbird, the Ford Mustang, still draws some of its design cues from its ancestor to this day.
Ford Bonus Built
The very first Ford F-Series rolled off the assembly line in 1947, and was the first post-war truck design for the company. Recognizable for its wider cab and single panel windshield, the design was polished into the more comfortable (but still capable!) “Five-Star Cab” in later model years. The Bonus Built was also available with all-wheel drive through most of its production, making it a great vehicle for rural use. This workhorse was so successful at what it did, that it became one of the best-selling trucks on the planet—which is why we still sell them to this day!
Our latest lineup of Ford vehicles is built on the shoulders of these iconic Ford giants, refining the technology and design choices of years past. Check out all the latest Ford cars, trucks and SUVs at Team Ford, and see for yourself just how far we’ve come.