Go Further Moments in Ford History

By Ford Social Member

The Go Further spirit has been with us from the beginning. And over the past 109 years, there’s been a lot. But as we think about the new year and what’s in the future, we thought it’d be fun to look back at a few of our favorites.

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Let’s start from the beginning. Even before there was a Ford Motor Company, Henry Ford was building cars. The 999, built in 1904, was one of Ford’s first. (We’ve even got a badge to honor it ). He kicked things off with quite a bang: breaking the land speed record at 91.37 miles per hour. Talk about thinking to the future!

When Henry Ford introduced the Model T in 1908, it was about more than the latest horseless carriage. It was about making a new means of transportation affordable for the everyday family—and giving them an opportunity to see the world.

The original method of assembling cars—having a team put together one car at a time— was OK, but it took about 12.5 hours. When Ford implemented the moving assembly line in 1913, that time dropped to 1.5 hours. In fact, only one type of black paint dried fast enough to keep up, so that’s what color cars were painted for the next 12 years.

Manufacturing can be tedious work, and employee turnover reflected that. So Henry decided to offer many of his employees a $5 per day wage – unheard of in 1914. Not only did turnover drop, but so did training and hiring costs, which led to a decrease in the cost per vehicle even with the higher wages.

It was the first few years after World War II. Henry Ford II was looking for the best and the brightest leaders to bring Ford Motor Company into the next generation. In 1946, he hired 10 veterans of the U.S. Army Air Forces, who became known as the “Whiz Kids,” to take a look at production and make it more efficient—for then and for the future.

Maybe you can’t drive to the moon, but Ford still had a hand in getting people there. Beginning in 1965, Ford Aerospace engineers and technicians provided design, construction and operational services for NASA’s Mission Control Center. Yes—Ford really did help get people to space and back.

But let’s get back on the road. After Ferrari won at the 24 Hours of Le Mans sports car race six times in a row, Henry Ford II wanted to get in on the action. In 1966 the MkII GT40 gave Ford its first overall victory at Le Mans and the first overall LeMans victory for an American manufacturer. The GT made another appearance four decades later as a road vehicle.

After vehicles like the Mustang and the GT40, who would have thought the Ford Escort would become the next big thing? After it debuted in 1981, it became the first successful world’s car —in Asia, Australia, Europe and North America. It remained popular until it was phased out in 2003 for the Focus.

But the trend for aerodynamic, fuel-efficient vehicles all began with the Ford Taurus, which came out in 1985. Dubbed the “jellybean” car, it replaced the boxy look of the time.

But let’s get back to space. It’s more than science fiction: In 1998, Ford teamed up with NASA again to bring artificial intelligence into its vehicles. In this case, it’s designed to improve fuel economy by monitoring fuel combustion rates—meaning that little bit of intelligence saves you a lot at the gas pump.

What do you do when you need a powerful engine, but also want good fuel efficiency? Ford engineers were addressing that exact question before the EcoBoost™ engine debuted in 2009. And better fuel economy means you can take “go further” literally with more miles from one tank of gas.

And after long testing new ways to keep passengers safe in the event of a crash, we took a novel approach in 2011: inflatable seat belts. They act as normal belts for everyday driving, and inflate to distribute crash force and keep you in place.

That brings us to 2012, when we made the promise that’s moved us all along official: Go Further found its home below the blue oval. For us, it’s a little reminder of where we’ve been, and where we’ve got to keep going.

So what do you think? Did we miss any important Go Further moments? Tell us in the comments below! And if you’ve got an idea about where we can go further in 2013, we want to hear it !
Ernest A 03/06/2013
Ernie owns and drive FORD Cars 65 Mustang, 85 F150 XLT 4x4, 93 Mustang Conv., 98 Sable. You might say "I like Blue Ovals"
Mike R 01/11/2013
Great article;Homerun for Ford and Lincoln
Randy N 01/08/2013
These are some of the reasons I am a Fordman and WE drive a FORD!
Debbie 01/08/2013
This was a great idea. Ihave been in a roll-over crash. Wish we had them. Hope they are standard equipment
Eugene C 01/08/2013
Keep up the good work.
zid z 01/08/2013
Hello. My idea - in a longitudinal direction which has slanting pushers and at movement in a longitudinal direction, a cam-shaft will open a moving cam-shaft of the valve on the greater size at increase in loading at the engine. At usual work of the engine, the cam-shaft works as usual. It we can combine systems-vvt-i toyota and i-vtec honda without greater expenses. It simply and reliably! Thanks.
01/07/2013
THAT'S WHY I LIKED FOR CARS.
John I 01/07/2013
Focus is the best selling vehicle worldwide for 2012, unseating the Toyota Corolla.
Richard F 01/07/2013
This car has the carictoristics of the batmobil.
Trevor N 01/07/2013
Its Such A pity that you decided to pull out of England
We the Customers Realy miss you and the Blue Oval At DAGENHAM and LIVERPOOL
Trevor N 01/07/2013
Seems like that we all must look back in order too know where we have come from too know where we are going in future, Trev Nightingale
UNITED KINGDON G.B.
Bill N 01/07/2013
Reminds me of the the thunderbolt. My friend Jim Cochrane took delivery of the only one in this area to my knowledge. We took it to the drag strip and boy would it fly.
phil 01/07/2013
lets not forget the time when ford did not build cars, ww ii when ford build airplanes, jeeps and military equipment, . i am thankfull to ford each and every day, as my dad was in wwii. i own many fords and will never buy from a forign owned auto mfg, "where ever they build them" i think it is sacreligious to own a honda or toyocar. i proudly own a 2002 s v t focus, 99 town car, 66 mustang , 60 thunderbird convirtable. and a 1969 mustang gt with only 384 origional miles on it.
john s 01/07/2013
Maybe a change back to the full size spare tire. That would be a first for american cars and it would be nice when you have a flat tire to see the same rim - tire on your car. There must be a way to fit it back in the trunk. Thanks John Sledge
Beach Betty L 01/07/2013
I love my 1999 GT Ford Mustang
Mortimer D 01/07/2013
Another reason why Ford was and forever will be the kind of cultural icon its competitors simply cannot.
bernard walker 01/07/2013
now you can run at racing speeds almost 2x THIS and burn less fuel than it did. can't wait until my hybrid mustangs beat that 222 smile!
Eddie S 01/07/2013
They've come a long way! Now please put the hybrid back in the Escape. I have two Escape hybrids and want a new one. I have a Fusion Hybrid on order, but also want the utility of the Escape, while keeping my almost flawless hybrids. Both are 05s, one with 90,000 miles, one with 132,000 miles, and are still going strong. I just want the new features like Sync, navigation, etc.
Richard F 01/03/2013
Reminds me of the Batmonil
Go Further Moments in Ford History
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