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Ford Model T, USA (Henry Ford, 1908)

Hazell, Paul (2014) Ford Model T, USA (Henry Ford, 1908). In: Iconic Designs: 50 Stories About 50 Things. Bloomsbury Visual Arts . Bloomsbury Publishing, London, pp. 30-33. ISBN 9780857853523

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In many ways the Ford Model T was quite an ordinary car. It was not the fastest of its day, nor the most luxurious, and its layout broadly followed newly-forged conventions. However soon after its introduction in 1908 it began to carry far more than just people and goods: it also carried with it revolutionary ideas. It was these ideas and associated value complexes that led to, and informed, the Model T’s iconic status and, like any icon, the Model T has come to stand for things that transcend the artefact itself.At the beginning of the 20th century private motoring was reserved for the wealthy elite. As an invention, the automobile was less than twenty years old. Early cars were often complex, unreliable and hugely expensive machines intended for the rich enthusiast or the mechanically adept chauffer. Henry Ford was determined to change this and to create ’a motor car for the great multitude’ through innovation in production methods and constant cost reduction. In the 2010 BBC television series ‘The Genius of Design’, Ford’s Chief Creative Officer, J Mays, declared ‘Henry Ford didn’t invent the automobile but he invented a way of getting it to the most possible people at the most affordable price.’ From Ford’s determination to create a car for the average American worker emerged not only the Model T, but also the moving assembly line. These twin innovations revolutionized American society (again) through the democratization of personal transport and the birth of the modern consumer society.

Item Type: Book Section
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Staff and students at the University of Worcester can access this book via Library Services (ebook and print copy - shelfmark 745.4 LEE). External users should check availability with their local library or Interlibrary Requests Service.

Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: Ford Model T, USA, Henry Ford
Subjects: T Technology > T Technology (General)
T Technology > TL Motor vehicles. Aeronautics. Astronautics
Divisions: College of Arts, Humanities and Education > School of Arts
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Depositing User: Paul Hazell
Date Deposited: 06 Nov 2020 14:48
Last Modified: 07 Dec 2020 17:14

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