The automotive industry is constantly changing and adapting, and with the production abilities made capable by assembly lines and new tech, we see new cars year after year. So, it’s is to forget that not that long ago in history, vehicles like the Ford Model T, which would be considered borderline ancient by modern-day standards, were still in production. But, 94 years ago today, the last Ford Model T rolled off of the production line, marking the end of an era.
Production of the Ford Model T
The Ford Model T was one of the company’s most popular selling cars of the time and was designed by Henry Ford himself. It was in production for several years, starting in 1908 and making its way through to 1927 before being pulled from the production line. It was noted for its affordable price and even received an award for being the Car of the Century.
The final production day for the Model T
The final production model of the Model T was no small end to the era. According to History.com, the last vehicle’s final production was a moment in time that was marked by Henry Ford himself, alongside his son Edsel. Together, they drove the 15 millionth Model T made from the factory, marking the occasion in a car that would be later sought after as a collector’s item.
Production wasn’t technically over until the next day when the factory was set to close, and while that may have been a momentous occasion for the automotive industry, it was less than fortunate for the some 60,000 workers who were laid off.
A dramatic drop in popularity before an inevitable demise
It was never Mr. Ford’s intention to lay off workers, but with a dramatic drop in demand for the Model T, it was no longer reasonable to continue production. Instead, the factory closed to make way for the next generation Model A, which would require retooling of equipment and slight changes for the factory. Regardless of the sudden drop-off in interest due to the increasing popularity of other affordable vehicles, the Ford Model T quite literally paved the way for less local travel, encouraging new roadways as more families could afford vehicles for the first time.
While it hasn’t quite hit the 100-year mark since the Ford Model T was pulled from production, it sure feels as though it has been as long. As one of the most influential cars in the automotive world in the US, the Model T will always be a special piece of history.