1933 Ford: V-8 Sedan was popular with the public

Staff reports
Farm Forum

Just a year after the American motoring public enthusiastically greeted Ford’s new V-8 engine in 1932, the automaker redesigned its entire line of cars.

The most popular model of the available 1933 Fords was the standard two-door sedan with a base price of $450. A total of 106,387 such cars were manufactured. The fresh new design, coupled with the new V-8 engine, proved irresistible to many prospective buyers.

Somewhere along the line, an unknown party bought one of those 1933 standard two-door sedans and had it professionally restored before selling it to a Rockport, Texas, man.

Soon thereafter, the Texan reportedly found another vehicle — the car of his dreams — and relegated the 1933 Ford to the back of his garage. Years later, he put the Ford up for sale.

Scott Leaf answered the ad, and in October 2015, after a few months of negotiating, he became its new owner. He purchased the 82-year-old dark blue car with black fenders sight unseen but all went well, and he shipped the Ford to his Virginia home in November 2015.

The 2,418-pound car rolled off the transport truck on its 112-inch wheelbase supported by 5.25×17-inch tires. The 42-spoke wheels have been cleaned, stripped, and powder-coated with red paint, to match the twin accent pinstripes that run the length of the car.

Both sides of the engine hood are ventilated by 23 louvers to help cool the 221-cubic-inch, 75-horsepower V-8 engine. Leaf points out that the original 21-stud engine remains in place. A floor-mounted shift lever controls the three-speed transmission, and the speedometer can register speeds up to 90 miles per hour.

To keep the occupants of the car comfortable in warm weather, a cowl ventilator can be opened to admit fresh air. Even more air can be directed inside by pushing open the bottom of the windshield. Because the windshield is hinged at the top, the wiper is mounted above the windshield. (Deluxe models of the 1933 Ford had two wipers while standard models had only one for the driver.) In cold weather, the passengers are kept warm by an optional heater beneath the dashboard.

At the center of the dashboard are two controls: one for the choke, the other for the throttle. The cozy five-passenger interior is equipped with bucket-type seats in the front and a bench seat in the rear. The rear window has a window shade that can be pulled down for privacy.

There is no space for luggage, and because the spare tire is attached to the rear of the car, no space is available for a luggage rack. Nevertheless, motorists of the era had no complaints.

Ford, like most competitors, was still a few years away from an all-steel roof but the fabric insert panel seems to function just fine. It especially works well for Leaf, who says he always enjoys taking his 1933 Ford two-door sedan out for some road therapy.

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