A year or two ago when Mr. Henry Ford, head of the Ford Motor Company, visited England the London Automobile Club gave a dinner in his honor. It was a swell dinner, and Ford was given a warm welcome, the chairman extolling his organising genius and his industrial methods and his mechanical ability in a particularly neat speech. "But," he concluded, with a twinkle in his eye, "there's one thing I think Mr. Ford ought to explain. How is it that he drove here to-night in a Rolls-Royce car?" When the noise, which the reporters describe as loud laughter, had died down, Mr. Ford arose with a whimsical smile he acknowledged the applause, thanked the chairman for all the nice things he had said, and the assemblage for its welcome. Then he added:
"Your chairman asked me to explain one incident connected with my visit here. and I must admit he is justified. Well, gentlemen, it was this way :
When I received your invitation I said to my secretary, "This is a great compliment a very great compliment, and we must acknowledge it in style. There must be no half-measures about the manner of accepting an invitation from such a great club as this. Just you get a move on our London agents, and tell them to send round the best car in stock.'
'Impossible, Mr. Ford,' he replied. 'The Ford works turn out one and three-quarter cars a minute, and the public demand now amounts to two and a third cars a minute.'
'Don't worry about that.' I said. 'order the car'. 'But.' he protested. 'to send you a car means breaking faith with a consumer, and the Ford Company has never yet been known to do that.' 'You are right' I said. 'Well, if you can't raise a Ford car in this little burg, let me have the next best.
And that, gentlemen, is how I came here in a Rolls- Royce.
Original can be seen here- http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/90588942
Rolling on floor, Laughing!
Well fellows, not as funny as you might think. Take a look at these two accounts. Did you ever expect to see a Ford and Rolls Royce compared favorably to each other in the same sentence?
From "Automobile Topics", 1906
I see many similarities between the Ford and the RR of the T era. Both manufacturers had a goal and made a series of models before reaching the car that they saw as their ideal. Both used the best available materials for their cars, but one aimed for low-priced mass produced, the other for the opposite market. Both operated a 'single model' policy. Both the T and the Silver Ghost spanned a similar period and length of production- 1908 to 1927, and 1907 to 1926. The products of both companies saw extensive use during the 1914/18 war and each was well suited to the tasks given them.
I am sure I could find more comparisons given a bit of time to think about it, perhaps others here have some thoughts?
Another. It's interesting to see our Ford name mentioned in the company of some of the premier builders in the world. While they were evidently both thought of as pioneers in the six cylinder arena, Ford and RR each stuck to their principles. The Ford six was the least expensive, lightweight six on the market, while RR was the top of the line six cylinder of the time.