Acquired in 1955 by João de Lacerda, it quickly became one of Museu do Caramulo’s most loved attractions. It remains one of the cornerstones of the museum’s renowned automobile collection today.
The Ford, bearing engine number 12 430 572, was originally registered in the city of Viseu, on January 26, 1926, by António Lopes Ferreira Lda. The company was one of the very first in Portugal to sell the blue oval’s cars. Nearly 100 years later that tradition continues, making them the oldest Ford dealership in Portugal.
The old Model T was spotted by João de Lacerda abandoned on a road next to a small workshop— while he was driving to Spain in March 1955. Upon inquiring about the vehicle, Lacerda ended up buying it for two thousand Escudos. Little did he know that this would be the start of an illustrious automobile collection in the Museu do Caramulo.
Still in good working condition, the 1925 Ford was dispatched to Porto for a mechanical overhaul by Manuel Alves de Freitas Lda, a prestigious Ford garage whose manager Manuel Menéres was more than happy to oblige.
Owing to the competence and dedication of Menéres, the 1925 Ford T was fully restored and took up its prominent place in Portugal’s first automobile museum, opened in 1959.
The Model T Ford was first introduced to the world on October 1, 1908, and it remained in production for 19 years, virtually unchanged. By 1937 Ford had sold a record-breaking 16 million-plus units.
The car quickly gained popularity among the general public with its simplicity, reliability and above all else, low price-tag. By the end of its life, the model T had gradually fallen behind its competitors, who launched newer low-cost cars filled to the brim with technological innovations.
The Ford’s 2898cc inline four-cylinder engine had a cast-iron crankshaft supported by three bearings, and two side valves per cylinder which developed only 20hp — but the Ford was always very reliable and could be counted on as a daily utility vehicle.
The car’s 750 kg weight and two-speed gearbox allowed it to reach a maximum speed of 70 km/h, which was more than enough at a time when tarmac roads were not so common.