1906 Ford Model K

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It may come as a surprise to some, but this Ford automobile was superior in power and luxury to the Cadillac. The 1906 Ford Model K was powered by a six-cylinder engine. While the Cadillac Model 30, which began production in 1909, had a four-cylinder engine, and the power of the early versions was much lower.
With all the advantages and manufacturability of this model was not mass-produced. So for 1906th year 350 such cars were produced, and by 1908th – 900 cars. For comparison, the above-mentioned Cadillac Model 30 was sold in the amount of 5,900 copies only in 1909. Today it sounds strange, but Ford Model K could cost twice as much as Cadillac Model 30. At the same time, the Model K type was twice the size of the previous Model B.
It was the company’s fifth production model and the first six-cylinder car from Ford. After the Model K was discontinued, Ford would not introduce a new six-cylinder car until ’41. Even though in ’32 they’d be launching the legendary V8. Despite the fact that this car did not bring a huge profit for Ford, but it accounted for 85% of the company’s income. It is believed that it was this money that allowed Henry Ford to buy the shares from Alexander Malcomson and become the main shareholder of the company.

The price and value of the 1906 Ford Model K.

In 1906, this Ford cost between $2,500 and $3,000 dollars. This car cost four times as much as the mass-produced Ford Model N. A Cadillac Model 30 could be bought for $1,500.
After the Model K was taken out of production, Ford focused on producing affordable not expensive cars. As we know today – this strategy allowed the company to become one of the major automakers in the United States. The mass production of cheap cars made a lot of money. But those cars no longer had the sophistication of the Model K.

Let’s have a look at the pictures.

With a wheelbase of 2896mm, the curb weight is 635kg. Correct me if I’m wrong, but from the data I’ve found, the curb weight is only 635kg. And this is a frame car with a big, six-cylinder engine! Most of the Ford Model Ks had an open body, called a Ford touring car. 850 of these cars were produced. In 1907, the Roadster was produced, – 50 copies. Roadsters cost more – 2,800 dollars.
Like most large cars of the time, the rims had wooden spokes.

On the left side you can see not a large round mirror. In the area of the partition of the engine compartment and the cabin could be installed additional, lighting devices with handles. Such a light could be removed from the car and walk with it to the door of your house on the unlit street.
On a racing roadster, the fuel tank was mounted just behind the seat backs. From the photo you can see a curved starter, – it was necessary for starting the engine, because the time of the electric starter had not yet come. On the wide footrests could be installed duffel boxes, – this is normal for large cars of that time. The tires were pneumatic.


The steering wheel is right-hand drive and this was normal for American cars of the very early 20th century. The rim of the steering wheel has wood trim. None of the bodies on offer were fully enclosed. The tilt roof could be lowered quickly, which provided good visibility. The gearbox lever and klaxon pear are outside the cabin. Pedals stick out from the floorboards – which was the norm for the time.

Specifications and engine of the 1906 Ford Model K.

The engine in the 1906 Ford Model K was mounted in the front, rather than under the seat, as was the case in previous models of the brand. The long, six-cylinder engine has a split block where each cylinder is cast separately. From the photo you can notice that each cylinder has two spark plugs.
With an engine displacement of 6.64 liters, the maximum power is 40 horsepower. The maximum speed is 50 miles (80km). The gearbox is a two-speed. For those years, these were very decent figures. So Cadillac didn’t get 40 horsepower on the Model 30 until 1911.

Suspension – leaf springs. The brakes are drum brakes and only at the back, which was the norm at the time. Power is transmitted to the rear wheels via a driveshaft.

This is a quality, expensive and comfortable car. It was a time when Ford hadn’t quite decided whether to make expensive or cheap cars. Now we know how the company will develop in the future. Undoubtedly, mass-market cars brought Ford a huge success, but these cars were no longer the luxury attribute that the Model K certainly was.
Maybe Ford could have gone the way of Packard – producing expensive and luxurious cars that presidents drove. But Packard and Peerles and Pearce and Arrow and many other luxury car makers disappeared one by one. And Ford produces cars to this day, having produced not a few iconic cars all over the world.

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