The Versatile Model A is a Success for Ford
This 1928 Model A Roadster Pickup has a style all its own – functional like a work truck but with the open-air feel of a roadster. It was also part of a major turnaround in Ford Motor Company’s fortunes. Ford’s Model T had enjoyed a great run, but rival automakers were beginning to beat Ford at its own game. Sales were slipping. Henry Ford’s son Edsel talked his dad into discontinuing the Model T — also known as the “Tin Lizzie” — for something new.
The Model A was more complex than the model it replaced but easier to use. Thanks to a new inline four-cylinder engine, it offered twice the horsepower of the Model T. The exterior design borrowed from the Lincoln for a more modern style. Other upgrades included four-wheel, cable-operated, mechanical brakes, welded steel wire wheels, and Houdaille-type, double-acting shock absorbers.
Ford’s Famous Friends
The introduction of the Model A was met with much fanfare. Henry Ford promoted it heavily in pre-launch interviews and advertising, and no less than Franklin D. Roosevelt and Mary Pickford had Model As. In fact, several Hollywood luminaries posed for pictures with their new Model As.
A Hot Seller
One million Model As had been sold by February 4, 1929, two million by July 24 of that year, and three million by March 1930.
Almost two dozen body styles were available over the Model A’s run, including the phaeton, roadster, Tudor and Fordor sedans, sport and business coupes, station wagon, Victoria, and, of course, the pickup truck.
Production of the Model A ended in March 1932 after 4,858,644 vehicles had been manufactured in all body styles. It was followed by the Model B, which included an updated, inline four-cylinder engine, and also the Model 18, which ushered in Ford’s new flathead V8 engine.
1928 Model A Roadster Pickup Specs:
- 200.5 cubic inch, L-head, inline four-cylinder engine
- 40 hp
- Unsynchronized three-speed sliding-gear manual transmission with single-speed reverse
- Single two-barrel carburetor
- Solid front axle with transverse semi-elliptic leaf spring
- Three-quarter floating rear axle with transverse leaf spring
- Four-wheel mechanical drum brakes
- 103.5-inch wheelbase
- 21-inch wheels