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October 26, 2012

Spontaneous car show pops up at West Gate

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412th Test Wing Public Affairs
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Air Force photographs by Kenji Thuloweit Paradise Valley Model A Club visited Edwards AFB Oct. 18 for a tour of the base. These Model A's are parked in front of the former Edwards Tower control room at Century Circle.

Those who drove by Century Circle Oct. 18 might have seen more than just the legendary planes on display outside the West Gate.

They may have seen some automobiles parked in front that date back even before some of those jets.

The old Ford Model A’s parked in a row belonged to the Paradise Valley Model A Club out of Riverside, Calif. The group was being given a tour that day of the base; parking their vintage cars and trucks outside the gate for about five hours.

Ford had two sets of cars made named the Model A. One series were made from 1903 to 1904 and the next were in production from 1927 to 1931. All these models were from the second series.

According to different historical websites, the Ford Model A of 1928 to1931 was the second huge success for Ford Motor Company, after its predecessor, the Model T. First produced on Oct. 20, 1927, but not sold until Dec. 2, it replaced the venerable Model T, which had been produced for 18 years. This new Model A was designated as a 1928 model and was available in four standard colors, but not black.

By Feb. 1929, one million Model As had been sold, and by July 24, two million. The range of body styles ran from the Tudor at $500 (in grey, green, or black) to the Town Car with a dual cowl at $1200. In March 1930, Model A sales hit three million, and there were nine body styles available.

The Model A was produced through 1931. When production ended in March 1932, there were 4,849,340 Model As made in all styles. Its successor was the Model B, which featured an updated 4-cylinder engine, followed by the Model 18 which introduced Ford’s new flathead (sidevalve) V8 engine.



Air Force photographs by Kenji Thuloweit




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