1929 Ford Model A Roadster - SOLD
  • Overview & History
  • Specifications
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It’s now completely safe to say that this car was never rusty or wrecked and with virgin steel underneath, the finish looks fantastic.

If you’re a car collector and there isn’t a Model A Ford in your collection, you’re doing it wrong. The Model A is not only an ideal starter collectable, but it’s a staple that ensures reliable old car fun at a moment’s notice. Parts and knowledge are plentiful, they’re as reliable as hammers, and they’re a joy to drive. For the first-time hobbyist, they teach you everything you need to know about old cars, including how to double-clutch, how to drive an old car with ancient brakes and suspension, how to service carburetors and ignition points, and basic troubleshooting and problem-solving, all things that will serve you well no matter where you go with your collection. And for the experienced hobbyist, sometimes you just want to get in, turn the key, and have some easy, low-stress fun, and the Model A is ideally suited to just that. In short, it’s a great hobby car with a reasonable buy-in that delivers on everything I’ve just promised and more.

This 1929 Model A roadster is from long-term ownership—in fact, the owner and his father restored it years ago and their ownership dates back to the 1960s. We’ll be up front with you here: this roadster was originally a phaeton and it says as much on the title, but during the restoration, the phaeton body was just too far gone to be saved. Instead, they purchased an all-new 100% steel roadster body, you know, the same ones built on Henry Ford’s dies and presses down in southern Ohio. So it’s completely authentic and nobody will be able to tell the difference, including you. If I hadn’t just told you that this body was stamped closer to the 21st century than the 19th, well, you’d never know.

Regardless, the workmanship is quite good and as you’d expect from using brand new steel, it’s in excellent condition. It’s now completely safe to say that this car was never rusty or wrecked and with virgin steel underneath, the finish looks fantastic. The two-tone green paint is period-correct and looks very much like the factory’s Balsam Green with Valley Green moldings, and it’s all set off with a slightly lighter green pinstripe that looks very sophisticated. With black fenders and wheels, this is one handsome little roadster and it has been receiving more than its fair share of complements as it sits in the Harwood Motors showroom. It’s quite pretty from any angle. The doors fit well and close with that familiar Model A metallic whap, the rumble seat opens easily, and there are dual taillights out back for safety. The grille is chrome instead of the original nickel, which offers a crisper look and lower maintenance and the rest of the brightwork is in excellent shape with no major issues to be found. There’s a little flaking paint on the bumper “guards” but that’s an easy fix that doesn’t detract from the overall look. You’ll note that the rear end was set up for a rear-mounted spare, and I think if I were going to keep this car for myself, I’d simply install a trunk rack because I love the single sidemount.

The interior is all-new Lebaron-Bonney equipment, which means accurate materials and factory-correct patterns. The brown leatherette looks great against the green paint and simplicity is the name of the Model A game, so the door panels are plain and the seats are unpleated. The only concession to an upscale look are the etched wind wings, which are a wonderful contrast to the otherwise basic roadster bodywork. Of note, the restorer was a tall fellow and adjusted the Model A’s steering column and wheel to be more comfortable for larger drivers and it makes a noticeable difference. The shifter is also slightly modified to offer a bit more leg room without affecting operation or appearance. Nicely done! The pedals are familiar, the instrument panel is bright chrome (although the speedometer and fuel gauge are not currently functioning) and the choke is over there on the passenger’s side. Once you get the hang of driving it, everything becomes instinctive and the controls are light so it’s always a pleasure to drive. Overhead there’s a correct black long-grain vinyl top that stows neatly and offers a tan boot to give it a clean look with the top down. And perhaps the most notable feature—the rumble seat—is in almost new condition, offering cozy accommodations for two.

The Model A’s 200 cubic inch inline-four really needs no introduction. From it’s surprisingly robust torque curve to its distinctive exhaust note, few early engines this side of an air-cooled VW Beetle are so beloved. This one is fully rebuilt and probably has less than 5000 miles on it since. Retard the spark a bit, give it some throttle, and pull the choke and it spins to life easily and quickly settles into an easy idle without any fussiness. On the road, it’s got plenty of punch and pulls the lightweight roadster around without ever seeming to work very hard and it cruises easily at 45 MPH or so. It’s quite correct, from the original 2-blade cooling fan to the flat copper electrodes for the spark plugs to the Zenith updraft carburetor and aside from the usual evidence of being driven, it’s in nice shape. Ford Green paint is on the block, the exhaust manifold was left raw cast iron so there’s some flash rust on it but nothing substantive, and recent maintenance includes new plugs, fluids, and fan belt. The original generator still makes six volts, the starter kicks it over without straining, and the clutch is light and easy to modulate.

You’ll need to brush up on your double-clutching skills to manage the 3-speed manual transmission, but once you’ve had some practice you’ll be clicking through the gears without thinking about it and the lightweight roadster gets 3.54 gears out back, so it never gets too busy-sounding on the open road. As you’d expect, the underside is excellent, with body-colored floors and a satin black frame, and again, it’s all pretty stock, including the mechanical brakes. Yes, you’ll need to plan your stops a little more carefully, but there’s not much car here to manage so they’re more than adequate for a smart driver. The exhaust system is a correct reproduction unit that gives it exactly the right sound and the black welded wire wheels look awesome inside a set of 21-inch Denman blackwall tires. Model As wearing whitewall always look over-dressed, don’t you think?

The Model A’s bright personality is easy to love and the roadster is perhaps the best style for overall enjoyment. It feels agile on the road but sturdy over the rough patches and you’ll always have someone waiting for a ride in the rumble seat. Like I said, if you don’t have a Model A in your garage, you’re really missing out on an important motoring experience. Call today!

Vehicle: 1929 Ford Model A Roadster
Price: SOLD
Stock Number: 112072
Odometer Reading: 370
VIN: A3650766
Engine: 200 cubic inch inline-4
Transmission: 3-speed manual
Gear Ratio: 3.54
Wheelbase: 103.5 inches
Wheels: 21-inch wire wheels
Tires: 4.40/4.50-21 Denman blackwall
Exterior Color: Green
Interior Color: Brown leatherette
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