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October 23, 1911 – A spot of English T, English Model T that is
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October 23, 1911 – A spot of English T, English Model T that is

A Model T Depot Hack in England. The Ford Motor Company began  intercontinental production on this day in 1911 when the first English Ford Model T left a factory in Trafford Park, Manchester, England, the first Ford assembly plant outside of North America. Three years after production started here, Britain’s received its first moving assembly line at the plant. This allowed the factory to pump out more than 20 Ford Model T cars per hour.  Trafford Park Ford plant An expansion of the plant after World War I significantly increased manufacturing capabilities. By the beginning of the 1920s, 41 percent of all registered cars in Britain were Fords. To further improve production numbers, Henry Ford demanded a a plant with better access to a deep water port. His dream came true with the...
October 22, 1955 – Ford Thunderbird sales begin
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October 22, 1955 – Ford Thunderbird sales begin

On the heels of the Chevrolet Corvette debut in January 1953, Ford unveiled the concept for the Thunderbird to the public just one month later. Believing Chevy would begin Corvette begin production in the near future, Ford kicked development of the Thunderbird into high gear. A full scale, painted clay model that closely resembled the production T-Bird debuted by May. Final approval would come the following September after minor tweaks. Engineers scrambled to build a brand new car in near record time. Just one year after introducing the idea of the car, the Ford Thunderbird wowed the public at the Detroit Auto Show on February 20, 1954. Production would begin the following September and on this day in 1954 the Thunderbird went on sale. Above: 1960 Ford Thunderbird. By Reinhold Möl...
October 15, 1924 – Lee Iacocca is born
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October 15, 1924 – Lee Iacocca is born

On this day in 1924 Lido Anthony “Lee” Iacocca was born. He would become one of the most influential men in modern American automotive history. In his career he would achieve many incredible feats throughout the 1950s, 1960s, 1970s and 1980s at Ford and Chrysler.  Due to a childhood illness, Lee was barred from service during WWII. Though this may have saved his life, Lee recalled wanting nothing more than to fly a bomber over Nazi Germany. Unable to join the fight, Lee took the opportunity to study engineering at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania. He would later attend Princeton before joining Ford’s own educational engineering program. Following his graduation from the Ford institution he became an engineer with the company. He soon found a better fit in sales and marketing afte...
October 1, 1908 – GM buys Buick, Ford builds first production Model T
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October 1, 1908 – GM buys Buick, Ford builds first production Model T

October 1, 1908 was a big day in the growing automotive industry. Up in Flint, Michigan, William Durant had recently formed General Motors, intending it be a holding company for various automotive interests. On this day in 1908 his new company acquired its first property, Buick, though it was more or less a transfer from current owner Durant to GM. On the same day, about 70 miles southeast of Flint, in the booming town of Detroit, the Ford Motor Company manufactured its first production Model T. The world changed forever. William Durant Henry Ford A month after Buick moved under the GM umbrella, Durant acquired Oldsmobile. In 1909 he'd snap up several more, including Cadillac, Oakland (to become Pontiac), Rapid Motor Vehicle Company (to become GMC), Reliance Motor Truck Compa...
September 18, 1955 – The 2 millionth Ford V8 engine is built
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September 18, 1955 – The 2 millionth Ford V8 engine is built

1932 Ford Model 18 V8 On this day in 1955 Ford produced its 2 millionth Flathead V8 engine, 23 years after its introduction in the 1932 Model 18. The valve-in-block design was the first independently manufactured V8 from Ford. The first Ford Flatheads had a displacement of 221 cubic inches and made 65 horsepower. Those V8s can be identified by the water pumps located at the front of the heads. Flathead Ford V8 firing order t shirt. Get it here. Production of that 221 lasted from 1932 to 1939 before being replaced by the 239, which pumped out 95 horsepower. The original Flathead Ford V8 design was discontinued in 1953, with the two millionth V8 being a second generation engine. Ford V8 in a Thunderbird
September 16, 1920 – The first Lincoln automobile
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September 16, 1920 – The first Lincoln automobile

Henry Leland founded Lincoln Motor Company in 1917 to produce Liberty V12 aircraft engine for the US involvement in World War I. Leland, who also founded Cadillac in 1903, was able to fund the company after receiving a $10 million government contract to produce the engines. By the time the war concluded, the company's Detroit plant had been the final assembly location of more than 6,500 airplane motors made of parts sourced from Ford, Cadillac, Packard and other automakers. Since their contract ended with the war, Leland and his son planned a transition into building luxury automobiles. While retooling their facility they officially reorganized as an automaker in January of 1920. Just nine months later, on this day in 1920, the first Lincoln automobile, a 1921 Model L, left the factor...
September 15, 1909 – Henry Ford loses legal fight of a lifetime, files appeal
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September 15, 1909 – Henry Ford loses legal fight of a lifetime, files appeal

It was on this day in 1909 that a court battle between George Selden and Henry Ford that started on October 22, 1903 came to an end...almost. To get to this point, let’s review: George Selden held an 1895 US patent for the gasoline powered automobile. This made him eligible to receive royalties from all automakers in the United States, all without manufacturing any vehicles himself. With executives at Electric Vehicle Company (EVC), he founded the Association of Licensed Automobile Manufacturers (ALAM) in 1903 as an overlord of the American auto industry. This association set up a simple way for automakers to pay their royalties to Selden and the EVC.  When Henry Ford set up Ford Motor Company in 1903 he tried to join ALAM, but he was denied. It’s theorized he was not admitted...
September 11, 1970 – The Ford Pinto goes on sale
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September 11, 1970 – The Ford Pinto goes on sale

The public met the Ford Pinto on this day in 1970, exactly one year to the day Ford fired former president Bunkie Knudsen. Ford developed the subcompact to compete with the influx of small cars of the era, particularly imports, but also domestics such like the Chevy Vega, introduced one day prior. Between 1971 and 1980, more than 3 million Pintos would roll out off assembly lines. However, it wasn’t the fact that the Pinto was the first mass produced car to feature rack-and-pinion steering that put it in the headlines. The explosive news coverage the car received throughout the 1970s can be attributed to an ill placed gas tank on pre-1977 models. Above: Ford Pinto - By Joost J. Bakker CC BY 2.0 The vehicle earned a reputation for bursting into flames in rear end accidents at speeds ...
September 9, 1954 – The First Ford Thunderbird
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September 9, 1954 – The First Ford Thunderbird

Ford's answer to the Corvette, the Thunderbird, began rolling off assembly lines on this day in 1954 for the 1955 model year. The Thunderbird, while aligned to compete with Chevrolet's sports car, was positioned as a personal luxury vehicle. Ford emphasized its new car's comfort and convenience, letting shoppers discover its sportiness during the test drive. It worked, with the Thunderbird outselling the Corvette some 20 to 1 in 1955. Above: 1965 Ford Thunderbird By F.G.Bendiks. Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0. Top: 1955 Ford Thunderbird by Nminow. Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0 Though the two-seater found continued success through 1957, engineers and designers at Ford thought they could sell far more than 23,000 of the cars in a year. Executive Robert McNamara called for a four-seater version, ...
September 2, 1959 – The Ford Falcon is introduced
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September 2, 1959 – The Ford Falcon is introduced

On this day in 1959, Henry Ford II introduced the compact, fuel efficient Falcon via closed-circuit TV to viewers in 21 cities. The little car with a big bird name became an instant success. Dealers across the country snapped up every one of the 97,000 offered in the first production run by the next day. Official sales began on October 8 for the 1960 model year. Within two years, more than one million Falcons sold. Top: 1960 Ford Falcon sedan by Rex Gray CC BY-SA 2.0. Above: 1962 Falcon wagon - By Stephen Foskett The Falcon, marketed as “The small car with the big feel,” was one of many compacts being produced by American automakers following decades of decades of land yacht manufacturing. To compete with fuel efficient European imports, like the VW Beetle, American automakers...